Plan to take over the world: Honest customer service day

Working in customer service, there are days when you hate customers. Not just a mild dislike “bad day” kind of feeling, more like a “OH MY GOD YOU MAKE MY BRAIN HURT WITH THE SHEER LEVEL OF STUPIDITY THAT YOU ARE DISPLAYING, I AM MORE DUMB FOR HAVING SPENT TIME ON THE PHONE WITH YOU” rampage kind of feeling. When curse words just spew forth from your mouth, so much so that your mother tries to grab for the soap to wash your mouth out but there's not enough soap in the world.

You just curse, and curse and curse.

Websites exist to share such moments of pure experiences, a repository of face-palm moments. My particular favourite, notalwaysright.com, used to be funny. Then I got involved in eCommerce, and suddenly the stories told were so like my own experiences that I found myself in hysterical fits of laughter. I finally truly felt the story-teller's pain.

Then today, whilst discussing one such moment with my boss, an idea hit.

We should create a day where customer service representatives are allowed to be honest with customers. Where if someone is being stupid, we can say “you didn't really think about that did you”, or “you think you have skills for this job, but you don't”, or “no, your son is NOT good enough to create a website for you”.

One day where you can tell that customer how much of an asshole they really are.

The other side of it is that the customers have to cop it on the chin. No formal complaints, no sooking about the company on twitter, nothing. Just let the rep vent, thank them for their time, tell them they're doing a good job and hang up.

Of course, there is no chance this will ever happen. No one will be able to just accept it, or appreciate the fact they're idiots. Heck, I would get defensive if I was told I was stupid (on the other hand, I might also think “oh, maybe I should pay attention to what they're telling me since I can be pretty thick”).

But you have to admit, it would be nice, wouldn't it?

Footnote – it's very clear from the tone of this post that it is a Friday afternoon after a very long and trying work week.