I was hired as a marketing contractor to work for a hot tub and pool company. I was a bit wary about it since the retail store seemed cluttered and outdated, and the people working there frequently look pissed.
Part of my job included some admin duties, such as answering the phones at the main desk, to connect the callers with the appropriate department.
The phone rang.
Me: How can I help you today?
Customer: I need to speak with someone about a part that’s not working in my hot tub that I bought from your store a year ago.
Me: Ok, just a moment, I’ll connect you with the Parts Department.
I redirected the call, and a few moments later my phone rang again. The call was returned to me.
Customer: The Parts Department said they don’t answer those kinds of mechanical questions, they just order the parts.
Me: Oh… sorry about that. Let me try the Service Department.
I send the call over to the Service Department.
A few minutes after, the phone call is returned to my desk once again.
Customer: Now this is getting really annoying. The Service Department said they only answer Pool Service questions, not hot tub service questions.
Me: Wow, my apologies. Sorry for the hassle, let me send you to the voicemail of the Manager. He’s busy at the moment, but can return your call soon. We’ll get back to you about this as soon as possible.
Later that afternoon, the Manager of the store comes over to my desk, looking very angry.
Client: I need you to work on your phone skills. The customer I just talked to on the phone was extremely annoyed that he had to talk to various departments about his hot tub part issue. I still need to find someone who can answer his question.
Me: Well, where was I supposed to send the phone call?
Manager: Just send it to the Sales Desk next time.
A Sales Associate who is standing nearby chimes in.
Sales Associate: Yeah, we’re supposed to know the answers to those questions, some of us know more than others about how those hot tubs work. I don’t know if I know the answer to that particular issue though.
I am starting to get a sinking feeling about this gig…