Monday, October 22, 2007

Cooper to begin radio career

Today Cooper came home with this note in his backpack...

"Some second grade students have been selected to be recorded on the radio for the annual 'A Child's Holiday Outlook.', which will air on KRWC (AM 1360) from November 19-Christmas Day. Your child has been selected to participate this year. Please fill out the bottom of the sheet so they have your permission. I will give you a schedule of when your child will be on the radio station when the radio station provides us with one."

I hope they know what they have gotten themselves into giving Cooper access to a mic.

For family, once we have the schedule I will try to see if we can either get it recorded or get a copy from the station.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A Reasonable Response

I finally got a reasonable response from PCI. Here is what they did.

They explained how the mistake happened and apologized for it.

They apologized for the way I was treated.

They offered to send us the cable we needed.

They offered to send us a $50 gift card to a restaurant of our choice for our trouble.

If I had gotten this response first, even without the gift card (and there would have been not need to apologize for the way I was treated) I would have been very happy.

I asked them to donate the $50 to a food-shelf or homeless shelter. I do not need to personally benefit for this, that was not the point.

If I can be so bold I would like to offer PCI some customer service advice in case something like this happens again with another client.

1. Take time to look up information if you need to. I know I am not the only client you have. A very appropriate response to my first email would have been something like, "I am sorry you are having a problem. I will pull your file and review the cart we built to find out what happened. I will contact you next week when I have more information."

2. If you are not the appropriate person to address the issue, send me to the right person. I contacted the person at PCI who was our consultant. The only person at PCI I had every dealt with. But if you are not the person to handle my issue, then send me to the right person. Something like, "I am sorry you are having a problem. I will forward your email to _______ so they can help you resolve the issue." You do need to be careful this doesn't turn into a run around. But I, as a client, want to talk to the right person.

3. Don't blame the client. You are not only the cart builder but the consultant. My pastor is not the expert on building carts, you are. Take the time to find out what happened, but don't blame the customer.

4. Don't call people names. I know it's no always easy to be in customer service and I'm not saying that you have to put up with abuse. The customer is contacting you because they have a problem. The are likely frustrated or mad, but what they want is there problem solved. Make sure your responses don't upset them more, make sure you have all the information you need to answer their questions, but don't let it get to the point where you are calling people names.

Part of that is don't take this personally, the client is writing to the company. It may be addressed to you because you are the company representative, but they are writing to the company.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

PCI and Me

A while back our church hired PCI (Portable Church Industries) to consult on then design, build and deliver carts and other equipment for setting up and running our church on Sunday mornings from the Middle School.

One of the things they designed and built was a cart to hold a computer for running our projected image on a Sunday morning. At the time we didn't actually have a computer to use for that, but it was built in anticipation for where we would grow.

Recently we bought that computer and put it into the cart. In doing this we found out that the patch panel they had put in the cart was inaccessible from the inside, making the audio panel worthless. It couldn't be used.

I contacted PCI to tell them there was a problem and to ask how they planned to solve the problem.

They first insisted there wasn't a problem. Then they said it was our problem for not ordering the right cables that would have been there. It took a dozen emails back and forth for them to finally admit they made any kind of error.

Through all of this they blamed our pastor for deleting the necessary cables and personally insulted me, calling me "condescending and arrogant."

And after this run of emails and PCI finally admitting their was a mistake, what am I left with. No actual help from PCI to fix the mistake (they did tell me that RadioShack sells cables if you think that is helpful) and no apology or even acknowledgment of the way I was personally spoken about in the emails.

I said in several of my emails that mistakes happen. I can understand that. We are all human.

I did however want them to own up to and fix their mistake.

But what I really don't appreciate is the defensive nature of a company that is a one stop shop and the name calling as part of their customer service.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Yo Quiero Taco Bell

Finally, Mexicans will be able to make a run for the border without worrying about the border patrol.

Taco Bell has opened a store in Mexico.

Apparently crappy Mexican food is hard to find in Mexico.

Bless you Taco Bell for filling the gap.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

updates on Cooper

School is in full swing now, so here are some updates on Cooper.

So far this year Cooper hasn't had any discipline problems. The teacher had some concerns at the start of school about his attention and staying on task. We have been working on that and seems to be doing well now. I think part of it was just getting into the routine of school again.

Cooper has been doing very well academically. He has gotten perfects on all his spelling test. He got 100% on his timed math test (20 questions in a minute). He is in the advanced reading group and was tested at 84 wcpm (words correct per minute). 82wcpm is the 75th percentile.

In other words, he has his mother's smarts.

The other day Cooper asked if he could give some of the money from his bank to poorer kids. The other day we were going through his clothes and removing clothes that were too small and he said we could give them to charity.

It is nice to see those seeds that have been planted starting to bear fruit.

Wants vs Needs
I'm not sure exactly what they were doing in class, but it was obviously something distinguishing wants vs needs. Cooper came home with a large piece of paper folded in half. On half said "Wants" and the other said "Needs" The wants side was empty (he may have just run out of time, I don't know) but here is the needs side.