Customer service – heads down, not up…..

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This topic contains 17 replies, has 15 voices, and was last updated by  Stephbaker 31 Dec 2018
at 09:34
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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)

  • MartynSinclair
    Participant

    Is it a case that employers are powerless to act.

    I am constantly surprised to see so many customer service facing people, heads down, checking social media. From check in to airport security, to boarding an aircraft to reaching an hotel and being served in the hotel restaurant – everyone is checking their mobiles, rather than concentrating on the Customer experience. Added to this are the number of phones being charged at the employers expense.

    Is it a case that phone checking is now an acceptable hourly function or are employers powerless to act? Or of course am I just being a grumpy old man???

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    stevescoots
    Participant

    Is it a case that employers are powerless to act.

    I am constantly surprised to see so many customer service facing people, heads down, checking social media. From check in to airport security, to boarding an aircraft to reaching an hotel and being served in the hotel restaurant – everyone is checking their mobiles, rather than concentrating on the Customer experience. Added to this are the number of phones being charged at the employers expense.

    Is it a case that phone checking is now an acceptable hourly function or are employers powerless to act? Or of course am I just being a grumpy old man???

    It is unfortunately the world we live in, people see being able to communicate/chat/update social media as a given right now up there with going to the toilet and access to water, that is across all age groups! In my factories I had to phase it in, starting with a ban on all employees apart from managers. (I had to provide secure storage for employees to leave phones) As things such as Wechat have now become everyday life in China for business that policy is evolving next year to managers being issued with company phones that only have receive function on calls and dial out to other registered numbers. It will also have a ban on all IM functions except we-chat and skype where all contacts can only be company/supplier/customer related. Sounds crazy I know but chat and social media are like drugs. We had to have a similar policy in the days of QQ
    I also have a rule that if I see or hear a single phone during a meeting the employee loses part of their productivity bonus and their chair for the rest of the meeting. After a few instances of people forgetting to put them in silent mode it soon stopped.
    Before I sold my Pub in china it was a constant battle getting staff off the phones, too tough a line and they would just quit., no matter how hard we tried the moment any management back was turned, the phones came out.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    Henryp1
    Participant

    Is it a case that employers are powerless to act.

    I am constantly surprised to see so many customer service facing people, heads down, checking social media. From check in to airport security, to boarding an aircraft to reaching an hotel and being served in the hotel restaurant – everyone is checking their mobiles, rather than concentrating on the Customer experience. Added to this are the number of phones being charged at the employers expense.

    Is it a case that phone checking is now an acceptable hourly function or are employers powerless to act? Or of course am I just being a grumpy old man???

    I agree with you and it’s annoying. But equally are the customers who are being serviced at whatever function and undertaking the same behaviour, prolonging the transaction and causing delays to those behind them. Or the customer who is making a telephone call at the sametime as the transaction, barely acknowledging the member of staff.

    I think it’s just part of the poor behaviour which is in society generally at all ages. So many people feel so busy all the time and accept this behaviour as the normal.


    Henryp1
    Participant

    Is it a case that employers are powerless to act.

    I am constantly surprised to see so many customer service facing people, heads down, checking social media. From check in to airport security, to boarding an aircraft to reaching an hotel and being served in the hotel restaurant – everyone is checking their mobiles, rather than concentrating on the Customer experience. Added to this are the number of phones being charged at the employers expense.

    Is it a case that phone checking is now an acceptable hourly function or are employers powerless to act? Or of course am I just being a grumpy old man???

    I agree it’s annoying and can delay a transaction. But it’s also the same behaviour that some customers of all ages exhibit which then causes delays to the customers behind them without any consideration. As is the customer who is having a telephone conversation at the same time as the transaction, barely acknowledging or ignoring the server.

    It just seems to be accepted as a normal day to day behaviour along with others displays of poor or bad behaviour across all parts of society.

    (1st posting disappeared)

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    AircraftLover
    Participant

    I agree with you

    Nowadays, the frequent use of the phone is everywhere, all the time

    That habit reduces the capacity of concentration at work, which has a direct impact in the customer’s service

    And when that interfere with safety, it is a very important issue


    canucklad
    Participant

    What I hear all the time is a sense of entitlement …….

    Even in my workplace where phones are forbidden due to customer data, it’s still a constant battle with all the generations. I had a tough conversation once with one of our outsource partners , resulting in me being the most loathed person since a certain painter from Vienna made a name for himself.

    And, IMO it’s an addiction that is ultimately going to manifest itself horribly in the not to distant future.
    It seems to me, that a deterioration of self -esteem will eventually creep into self-loathing and lead to a generation of neurotic schizophrenics , but then again I’m not a mental wellness expert.

    However, in my local, 3 young lassies are in the process of mutating themselves from naturally good looking women into Botox hags . It turns out they’ve all shared posts on “proper pouting lips” and rather than looking like Audrey Hepburn are closer to a cartoon Hippopotamus .
    Tragic – But what’s more tragic is how long it takes to get served now. It’s almost as if we’re interrupting their right to gaze endlessly at their handsets.


    fqtvgla
    Participant

    Totally agree with this comment from Henryp1. I see it with people arriving at checkin, barely acknowledging the person serving them as they arrive chatting on their phone and don’t hang up. I see it too boarding flights when same type of individuals arrive at the door and hold everyone up as the phone they are chatting on has their boarding card on it and they are loathe to hang up. I see phones being switched on and texts sent and received before aircraft touch down. So many people are damn rude and have a huge sense of entitlement.

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    nevereconomy
    Participant

    I love a grumpy old man forum as it is one of the things I do best. Like everyone here I am sick of me and everyone else being ignored in favor of piece of technology.
    Last time in T5 the number of people who walked into me staring at a screen was in the dozens. I see kids in pushchairs nearly pushed into the road because Mum is chatting or playing bingo or whatever they do. People on bikes turning blindly in front of cars, dogs ignored by their owners on their walks, not even mentioning all the front-line people in service jobs shown incredible rudeness by the jabbering morons they are serving. I personally have managed to avoid the smartphone and continue to do so as a protest. I ran a very profitable export business both pre and post smartphone with just a phone that made and received calls (with excellent international roaming) and I don’t think my business suffered in any way from not having something beeping on the bedside table at all hours of the night.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    FaroFlyer
    Participant

    I am also a grumpy old man. In Martyn’s original post he comments about employees all charging their phones, which reminded me of a documentary about Ryanair. O’Leary was asked if it was true that employees were forbidden from charging phones at work? Yes, he replied, it is forbidden, but nobody takes any notice. He continued the walk through Ryanair offices adding: She’s charging her phone, so’s he, so’s she, so’s he… If MO’L has given in…

    I also remember when I was first running a company in HK, back in the early 90’s I told my PA that people were spending too much time chatting on the phone. One girl was spending about 2 hours a day, by my simple observation. Oh, my PA answered, it is different to the UK. Here calls within Hong Kong are free. OK, I answered, in that case it seems that Melody only needs to spend 6 hours a day working, so we’ll make her job part time, and reduce her salary by 25%. Miraculously the private phone calls stopped, at least while I was in the office.

    Like nevereconomy I don’t have a smartphone or, I actually do, but do not have data enabled as I have no need. If I am in my office I have internet, or in a hotel, or an airport lounge, or a motorway service station, I have WiFi and use my laptop. My only other concession to technology is to enable WiFi on my phone so that I can use Skype, and save money.

    Christmas next week. Bah, humbug!

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    One of my supremely satisfying moments was when waiting to turn right into a main road out of a minor road and I saw a young man walking along the pavement from my left with his head down in his phone, texting and he had headphones on and was clearly utterly oblivious to his surroundings.

    As he walked into the side of my car it was like watching a train crash in slow motion. It was, he told me, my fault for not watching where I was effing going, despite the fact that I was not only stationary but the engine wasn’t even running.

    I hope it taught him a lesson but I’ve no doubt that it didn’t.


    stevescoots
    Participant

    What I hear all the time is a sense of entitlement

    And, IMO it’s an addiction that is ultimately going to manifest itself horribly in the not to distant future.

    It seems to me, that a deterioration of self -esteem will eventually creep into self-loathing and lead to a generation of neurotic schizophrenics

    not eventually…its already here…..now where is my safe space?

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    PeterCoultas
    Participant

    I had heard the smoking among teenagers had reduced as their need too look ‘cool’ was now fulfilled by their mobile


    stevescoots
    Participant

    smoking for coolness is being replaced with Vaping, I sometimes when in the UK do the school run and pick up my Grandaughter from secondary school, the amount of vaping right outside the school from kids is shocking, at least i did my smoking at school out of sight!


    alainboy56
    Participant

    To all contributors here – yes you are all correct – THE WORLD HAS GONE MAD! When people ask me for my facebook ID, they look astonished when I tell them I am not there. I am also not on instagram, nor on twitter – although for ease of communication with a selected group, and at work, I am on whats app.
    I take the premise that my phone is there for MY benefit, I use it when I want to use it, not when anyone else wants to call me/whats app me/message me etc. And I answer or don’t answer as is my wish.

    When I started work some 45 years or so ago, there were NO mobiles, so when I went out of the office, messages were left on my desk to deal with on my return, half went directly into the bin, i.e. proving that 50% were of no real importance and a waste of time.

    The youth (and some elders) have lost the reality of life, to them living in this cyberspace of false ‘friendships’ is just following the fashion like sheep.
    And its all to do with requiring praise and boosts to one’s self esteem. My wife who is in her fifties has also succumbed partly to this necessity, and groans to me whenever she posts a pic/photo of something that ‘she thinks’ is useful on facebook and only gets 5 ‘likes’. ‘Oh dear, perhaps it will be discussed today by the an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council’ I proclaim in mock anguish. Her usual reply is to say as loving wives do ‘Oh shut up you don’t understand facebook’. Well, all I can say is, to use a common phrase where I live and work ‘al-hamdulillah’ meaning basically ‘praise be to Allah’ to those who don’t know.

    To demonstrate how the youth is growing up. My 14 yo granddaughter was ‘shopping in town’ with my daughter some months ago and they passed a similar couple ie mother and daughter doing the same thing. The two youngsters are school friends and in facebook extremely close exchanging messages/pics/whatever and telling each other ‘love ya babe’ and the like. When they passed one another, the girls hardly exchanged even a glance. My daughter then said ‘but isn’t that so and so’? ‘Yeah’ was the reply …………….. The outcome of this being that in reality the youth of today cannot communicate, they can only do so online in cyberspace.

    I also agree wholeheartedly with the rudeness of people when not hanging up whilst meeting/greeting/buying/talking with others – its absolute plain ignorance!
    Yes I am a grumpy old man, but I still have manners and etiquette taught by my parents and can actually engage people in conversation for hours and hours about any subject, without once checking or reaching for my mobile which stays firmly hidden away in my pocket, if not completely on silent, on a very reduced volume.

    I will now step down from my soapbox —- now where is my mobile??


    AircraftLover
    Participant

    A few weeks ago, I saw a teenager skating, on top of a longboard, crossing a bridge, while texting

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