Charles Howden

December 23, 2006

This one took me off the island…

Filed under: Customer Service — Charles @ 10:14 pm

December has been a great month for me having spent the second half of it lounging around in Barbados being spoiled rotten. As I move around the Island enjoying myself, meeting friend and family (to be) I can’t avoid observing the levels customer service we experience on the island. I am a visitor; everyone I meet is kind, friendly and helpful, and I don’t want to behave like a critical guest, so I don’t want to sound picky when I trip over service which doesn’t measure up to my expectations.

This one though, took me off the island.

The other day I visited the official Rolex website. I wanted to find out where the official outlets were on the islands. We had been out shopping in Bridgetown, and I watched as a rude and poorly trained sales assistant lost a sale for a new watch. For sure, not her fault. She clearly hadn’t been trained how to sell, or how not to be rude to customers on the verge of buying (when you are selling a top brand, you can generally get away with murder). Later, I surfed the Rolex site because I wanted to connect the potential buyer with a more qualified store on the island and was surprised that there was no facility to find a list of retailers. Especially surprised because Rolex so tightly control their retail outlets and definitely know where they are. Never mind, I thought I’d email them to let them send me a list, except that their website, which is very pretty, lots corporate colours and flash images, has no facility to contact anyone at Rolex by email. Not for any reason. What does that communicate about a brand and it’s capabilities? And in this case a top “aspirational” brand. Not impressed.

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