The complaints lady
Advice from Mom
By Rita Lessard
“Hello, Complaints Department. Rita speaking. How may I help you?” This is my new line, and I feel justified in saying this because anytime there’s a complaint, it is inevitably addressed to me. Some people have an ear for music; I have an ear for complaints. I can live with this role, but sometimes the complaints are a bit much.
For instance, take the beautiful warm weather we’ve had in the last few days. Would you believe people are complaining it’s too hot? I swore in May, June and July that I would slap the first person who complained about the sunny weather. However, I’m not generally a violent person, so I had to restrain myself a few times. Enjoy this weather people because I’m sure it won’t last that long.
Working with the public I have people complaining all the time. I have one customer who gets a large coffee with four milks and three sugars, and then complains that the coffee is cold. For a few weeks this was an ongoing complaint, so I created a science experiment – there a science to making coffee – to solve this problem. The next time this order came in, I put four small milks in the coffee, nuked it and then give the customer a couple of take out milks on the side. Problem solved. One happy customer.
After many years of marriage, my friend Bev complained that her husband Ted was no longer as romantic as he once was. For instance, the other day she and Ted were walking through the park and noticed a young man and a woman sitting on a bench passionately kissing. Inspired by the way the man was kissing his partner, Bev turned to Ted and asked him why he didn’t do that. Ted replied, “Dear, I don’t even know that young woman.”
Some complaints can be fixed and others can’t. You have to pick your battles. Customers think I’m a soft touch because they always come to me or they’ll call and ask for me. This is fine because I lead them to think that the customer is always right whether they are or not. It’s much easier to make them happy by apologizing for the wrongs done to them than it is to argue and waste time. Replace their order and offer them a free donut and let them be on their ways. Easy night!
Some helpful hints on some common complaints:
- Keep counters cat-free – If your kitty loves to jump onto your counter, try this trick. Put a few aluminum baking pans on the top of the counter – the noise will stop your cat doing it again.
- My friend Sharon’s dog encountered the wrath of a nasty skunk. Her mother suggested she get a small bottle of peroxide, mix it with half a box of baking soda and a tablespoon of dish detergent. Brush this mixture on the dog and rinse with warm water. I hope this works. I just got this problem solver about and hour ago, so I hope it worked for Sharon.
- With the nice weather come the mosquitoes, and other insects. Pin a used fabric softener sheet to your skirt or clip some to the bottom of chairs and tables. The bugs will fly elsewhere.
Happy birthday to my daughter-in-law Christine – August 15th.
P.S. The next issue will have the results of Sharon’s dog’s dilemma.