Telling a customer ‘no’…….priceless

So part of my job is handling customer relations for a company- I run the website, I process the orders, I take calls and try to help people figure out what they need and how to get it. It’s a glamorous world.

Last week, I had a customer call and leave a message that went like this:


Hi my name is __________ and I placed an order with you last week. Someone please call me back and give me a status update on my order. I haven’t seen it yet and I’d like to know when it will arrive.


I check her order. It’s done been delivered, as they say. So I call her back. She insists it has not been delivered. Over the course of the conversation, it comes out that she entered her old shipping address into our system, so we had shipped it there.

Old address- Alabama.

New address- California.


Upon learning that it had been shipped to the old address (she apparently thought she had done something in Paypal to enter her new address. She hadn’t. Paypal has no address listed for her at all, new or old.), she fairly ordered me to call UPS and see about getting it picked up and sent out to her.

Implication- I was supposed to handle it.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, and yes, it would be the good business thing to do. But here’s something about our business that most don’t know. We’re the middlepeople. We organize orders between the company that makes the parts, and we run the website whereby these parts are sold. Someone buys a part from us, and we buy the part from our distributor, and they send the part to the person who bought from us. So we don’t do returns (because we’ve bought the part and can’t just absorb the cost back if someone changes their mind) and once a part is delivered, our responsibility is done.

This is getting long-winded. I’ll wrap it up.

Her attitude is that I should just fix it, and that our company should eat the cost for getting the package picked up and resent. Her mistake, but we should pay for it (literally and figuratively). She’s being a bitch about it, and I’m not willing to help her while she’s being a bitch. This is why I put up with the pay and the hours- I’m my own boss, and I don’t necessarily have to tolerate abuse anymore.

So I told her to suck it.

… not really. That would be quite un-Buddhist-like of me, and I do try to honor all living beings, even when they are acting like asshats. But if you’d been on the phone call I was on, you’d have been tempted to tell her to suck it too.

What I really did was politely told her that there was nothing we could do (true enough) and that we had completed our obligation as per the order. If she could reach someone in the old neighborhood, she could arrange to have the package shipped to herself at the new location….ah, but she wasn’t interested in that at all. She was just going to call her credit card and have it reversed.

Good luck.

I got to put my foot down and stick to my principles, which are that I will not tolerate abuse from an asshat just because they feel like the customer should always be right (even when they are wrong). I don’t have to tolerate it right now.

Suck it, and have a nice day.

Damn, sometimes I love my job.


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