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Friday, August 30, 2013

Customer Service FAIL: TLC Pet Food edition

Nikki Wills
cancelled our account with @tlcpetfood CSR Lindsay was really rude and out to prove me wrong. Unfortunate since we like the product.
Refused to take any ownership of my issue. This was my first ever complaint. I thought she might try to keep our business but didn't seem bothered that we cancelled. That is bad practice. If that keeps up you will end up with no clients.
TLC Pet Food
Hi Nikki. We are very sorry to hear about your issues and would love to have you stay on with TLC. We pride ourselves on our customer service and Lindsay has received nothing but positive feedback from customers. We understand that it wasn't really a complaint and you ordered more food than you needed. As always, we are more than happy to refund your order once you return it. TLC wants your business and we appreciate all of our customers. You can't have the type of success and growth that we have enjoyed since 1994 without the best products and the best service. We are sorry you are upset and will have a manager contact you to discuss further. Thank you Nikki for your business and we hope that we can work things out

Nikki Wills
The problem was it wasn't supposed to come for 30 weeks. I found the process of changing the date confusing. I had asked if this one time you would absorb the shipping cost since it was clearly a case of misunderstanding. Lindsay refused, didn't make me feel like my business is valued and was quite abrupt. If this was a running thing with me then no, I could see her saying no sorry it's a valid fee/policy but as this was my first complaint and I was clearly confused, good customer service would have explained the process and as a one time courtesy, credit my account the cost of shipping. I worked for the biggest bank in Canada for 8 years until recently starting my own business. Never would I blame my clients for anything. Always take ownership and educate my clients. Without clients I would not be in bisiness.

Nikki Wills
Thanks Nikki. I understand your dilemma and want to be fair. Having worked at the bank and owning your own business you understand that there are costs. The bank has made it an art form to charge customers for everything and good luck getting those fees back from customers. You can imagine what would happen if we allowed people to order the food and we had to pay for all of the returns. We would be bankrupt. We have incredible customer service and receive compliments daily. We are a customer service driven company where you can reach a human. Good customer service is not just giving in. It is not a matter of blaming clients. We give customers their own management tools that are very intuitive, however, that also comes with some responsibility on the customers part. You will learn this as your company grows. If you would like to return the product, we will split the cost of the return with you. Please let us know prior to sending it back and we will issue you a Return Authorization Number. Thanks Nikki.

Actually, TLC Pet Food, when I worked for the bank (who turned a 2.3 billion dollar profit in their 3rd quarter alone), CSR's at the "lowest level" authorization, were given the discretion of up to a certain amount (pretty high amount) to refund client fees without needing a manager override. We were trained not to fight clients who were upset about fees. If a client was polite and was in good standing we could reverse almost any fee up to 90 days backdated. If a client wasn't chronic in incurring fees and then complaining/asking to have them reversed, we would reverse them and apologize for inconvenience. So don't tell me that giving in to clients makes a company lose money.

Again, if I called every month and asked for fees to be reversed, then no, I shouldn't get what I want just because I am a client. However, since I am a good client who never missed a payment and has referred friends and family to the program (I even had a link to the website in my email signature and on my blog page and shared it frequently with my 323 twitter followers) it would have been a better business choice to absorb the shipping cost, with the understanding that it was a one time courtesy only.

Then, you go on to say,  you have "incredible customer service" but contradict that statement by saying you can't afford to "give in" to your customers. We know that the customer is NOT always right, in reality, BUT if you look at BIG businesses like the one I worked for you will see that they teach their staff that sometimes you have to give a little to receive a lot. THIS is the model I use in my own business and I have tripled my cliental in one year.


1 comment:

  1. That is ridiculous. I saw your link to the site on here before and had thought about making the switch. If this is how they value their customers then forget it. I will stick with Science Diet.


No my name ain't baby

No my name ain't baby