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  1. #1
    Energizer Bunny Resonance's Avatar
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    Default People who seem to demand conflict

    How do you deal with people who simply refuse to get along?

    This is brought to you by a visitor I had at work today.

    "Hello, you have a package here for me from Monique."
    "Okay. What's your name? *checks packages* Nope, I don't have anything with your name on it."
    "Yes you do."
    "... well, according to the logs, all of Monique's packages have been picked up already."
    "Look again."
    "*pretends to look for a few seconds*... I can call Monique and ask her what's up?"
    "Okay."
    *calls monique, gets no answer, calls her assistant, gets vacation message, calls monique again, still no answer and mailbox is full* "Well, she's not at her desk at the moment. If you'd like, we can try again later or I'll take down your info and let you know."
    "Can't you get up and go find her?"

    "...um, no. First of all, I don't know where she is, we're spread across 3 floors, and I'm not supposed to leave reception unattended anyway. Besides, she's not at her desk or she would have answered."
    *rolls eyes, looks at me like I'm retarded, tries the door which is locked* "Can't you go look for her?"
    "...no. I don't know where she might be."
    *phones Monique who picks up right away* Hello, the receptionist says you're not at your desk. No, no problem. Hehe. Bye. *click* *glares* She was at her desk."
    "...okay. "*nods awkwardly and smiles*
    Then she stands in front of the washroom (where I wanted to go) and chats with Monique for 15 minutes, occasionally glancing at me triumphantly.
    I have a feeling this could have been handled better but all of my ideas involve weapons and scarring.

    Similar stories? How do you handle it?
    The beauty of a living thing is not the atoms that go into it, but the way those atoms are put together. ~ rCoxI ~ INfj ~ 5w6 so/sp

  2. #2
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    She really wanted something and you were in her way.

    There's no way to deal with it other than finding a job that's not in customer service.

  3. #3
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    Default

    By the way, I can empathize with both sides, I'm going to be perfectly honest with you.

  4. #4
    Freaking Ratchet Rail Tracer's Avatar
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    Customer service/receptionist. Ughhhhhhh. I do my best to stay away from customer service.

    The real problem is that that visitor should be mad at Monique, not you. That person's attitude is also not in line. Her way of talking is not in line either. And @Marmie Dearest, whether she really wanted something or not, it does not give a person the excuse to act that way, especially if the receptionist was doing what she can do to get that person her damn package.

    Either way, what comes with the job, comes with the job.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burning Rave View Post
    Customer service/receptionist. Ughhhhhhh. I do my best to stay away from customer service.

    The real problem is that that visitor should be mad at Monique, not you. That person's attitude is also not in line. Her way of talking is not in line either.
    But she was assertive and did in fact get what she came for. It was probably something very important to her.

    I'm not saying that this is Resonance's fault, because it's not, on the other hand "pretending to look" doesn't really sit well me frankly...but from the perspective of the visitor, Resonance was flaking out on her job, and she was ultimately able to get what she wanted, which just confirmed to herself that she was right to insist.

    I can see both sides. I really can. People shouldn't always passively slink away or be agreeable, but on the other hand in this case it really isn't Resonance's fault what went on, apparently it was Monique's...and Resonance had to take the blame like receptionists and customer service reps and waiters the world over who take shit for their higher ups.

    Which is why my suggestion is to get out of customer service if you find it unduly upsetting.

  6. #6
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    I've got to say that I agree with Marm. Maybe the visitor was slightly abrasive, but I can totally see myself being like that in that situation, with minor variations. (ie. I probably wouldn't have said "the receptionist says you're not at your desk" and then glared for 15 minutes).

    I've worked in customer service, including call centres, where you're considered the lowest of the low. I quite routinely got told that I'd been incredibly helpful and courteous. Frankly, I don't think I was incredibly helpful and courteous most of the time, just doing my job and being routinely polite and professional. But I realised that people reacted to me that way because compared to the abysmal level of average service out there, I WAS being incredibly helpful.

    Sorry Resonance, I know this probably sounds rude, but my reaction to you would have been that you were being unhelfpul and slightly obstructive. I live in the UK and the level of customer service is so bad here, on the whole, that sometimes I've felt I had no choice but to yell. I mean, most people would probably start to yell if they'd spoken with the eleventh person at their bank, all of whom had given them conflicting info, all of it proving to be wrong. And you know what? By the time I've yelled, they've usually actually done something helpful for me, because they've realised that I'm mad and I'm going to make a big complaint or whatever. Sometimes it's the only way to get decent service. Which is pretty sad, but still a fact. I have no doubt that the people I dealt with then called me a big fat bitch when I hung up the phone, but at that stage I don't even care.

    I do know what it's like to be on the receiving end. I have worked both in reservations for an airline in a call centre, and for another airline in customer relations, the department where people actually are legitimately allowed to complain and yell at you. I was always extremely professional, I think, though sometimes I'd scream in frustration when I hung the phone up. I know it's hard to be in customer service and dealing with difficult or irritable people, but one thing I refuse to put up with is bad customer service. And believe me, I have encountered people working in customer service who think they can get away with being rude, obstructive, accusing me of being rude or causing conflict when I was doing none of the above, etc. If there is one thing I will not put up with it's that.

    Rant over...sorry, I think you pushed a button as customer service is a pet peeve thing for me
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  7. #7
    Energizer Bunny Resonance's Avatar
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    Yes. I understand that my perspective was skewed because I was rubbed the wrong way off the bat by her treating me like a retard.

    I was less polite than I wish I could have been but I didn't really know how I could react without being obstructive. If she got too pushy I probably would have started pushing back. I thought I was being helpful by suggesting and doing everything in my authority to get her her package. But at the same time, we get a lot of impatient people asking for packages that aren't ready yet, and we're supposed to do our best to politely get them to buzz off. People normally get a phone call from the mail room minutes before the package is passed to my desk, and I wasn't sure if she'd even gotten such a call... but I didn't want to ask because I (stupidly) was afraid that would set her off.
    The beauty of a living thing is not the atoms that go into it, but the way those atoms are put together. ~ rCoxI ~ INfj ~ 5w6 so/sp

  8. #8
    Emerging Tallulah's Avatar
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    I think you handled it the best way you could--if you already went through the records thoroughly the first time, you're really only humoring the insistent person, anyway. You called Monique and her assistant, and you can't leave your desk. The visitor sounds like a jerk. I would have been tempted to throw a polite but pointed, "She was NOT at her desk the two times I tried her, nor was her assistant. But I'm glad you found her." Then I probably would have found Monique later and explained that I was definitely not trying to obstruct the flow of things in any way.
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  9. #9

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    ^Agreed.

    If you're not supposed to leave your desk and you did what you could and the visitor still isn't satisfied--what the hell else can you do apart from just placating their insistence? I sure as hell wouldn't leave my desk and risk disciplinary action or worse for a jerk-off I don't even know.
    "The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things." - Rainer Maria Rilke

  10. #10

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    You were on the right track with the weapons and scarring.
    Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight.

    Johari
    /Nohari

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