Sunday, January 18, 2009

In Which I Almost Abandon My Calm Demeanor in a Verbal Conflict With a Florist in Gallup

Gentle Reader,

Today is a lesson in customer service. You would think that in today's economy, businesses would be glad for paying customers. They would be wise to treat their customers politely--even kindly. This would be especially important for those who have any association with the funeral industry. People who have lost a loved one are already distraught--they don't need to be abused by a salesclerk or other employee.

I simply wanted to order a nice arrangement of plants or flowers for my beloved cousins and aunt who are mourning the loss of their brother and son. I wish I could go to the funeral but I can't. I want them to know I am thinking of them and love them.

This is the conversation I had on the phone with a florist in Gallup:

Florist: Did you order a plant today electronically?

Me: Yes, I did

Florist: We are out of that plant.

Me: (Waiting for her to suggest a substitute--as the website says they will do)

------crickets chirping------

Me: Could you suggest an alternative?

Florist: We don't have any plants. None at all.

Me: Do you have any flowers? Flowers would be fine.

Florist: We've had a big rush on flowers because of a lot of funerals. We don't have much to work with here. This is a small town.

Me: I know, I used to live there.

Florist: A very small town.

Me: I know, I used to live there.

Me: Well, what do you have...I'm sure anything would be fine, this is a beloved family member and it's really important to me that I let his family know that I am thinking of them.

Florist: You know, the funeral home you wanted them delivered to is going to close and they plan to take the body over early and we probably can't get the arrangement to them in time.

Me Thinking: (THE BODY? THAT'S MY COUSIN! NOT A BODY!!)

Me: Do you deliver to Ramah?

Florist: Yes, but that's an extra $25 charge.

Me: That's fine. I would like to do that.

Florist: You really should have called sooner. It's too late now. If you hadn't waited so long to place your order we might be able to do something.

Me: I'm sorry. I didn't know my family member was going to die. If I had any idea that my family member was going to be in a terrible accident, I would have called you ahead of time to make the appropriate arrangements in a way that is convenient for you.

Florist: Uhhh

Me: I'll make other arrangements. Thank you so much for your time.

Florist: Uhhh

Me: Buh bye

You will notice that there was no concern for the loss of a loved one. No apology or any expression of regret that they couldn't help. Just rude remarks about my tardiness in ordering. Even though I placed the order THREE DAYS before the funeral!

I'm going to be writing a letter to Aztec Floral Design to kindly suggest that they might need to do some training in customer service--or just plain good manners.

1 comment:

Melanie said...

JoAnna, my mouth is hanging open. I can't believe that actually happened. I hope you hear from someone who knows what they're doing, and fast.