Monday, February 25, 2013

And The Beat Goes On...

I dislike battling out service issues with large corporations.  While whatever grievance I have may get addressed, at the end of the day nothing will be solved.  Large companies, especially those that sell appliances or any other 'big ticket' item rarely own the entire customer experience.  You buy from the Big Box store, but the delivery team and warehouse will more than likely be contract players that aren't officially tied back to the Big Box.  They have no skin in the game, so to speak, therefore they have no real incentive to not beat the living piss out of your floors when making a delivery.  It's not as if the Big Box store is going to fire them.  Yes, they will issue forth sincere apologies for the inconvenience and cut a check or gift card for damages, but nothing will be changed for the better. 

Online shopping has definitely taken a big bite out of the retail pie, but brick and mortar retail do themselves no favors by not owning the customer experience from start to finish.  Contracting out delivery may save a couple of nickels, but the dollars going up in flames when consumers decide to shop elsewhere next time add up.  Big Box retailers, should they wish to remain in business, would be wise to adapt the following:

1.  Own the transaction from start to finish.  No more farming out the work to low-bid shops.  Nothing good comes from that.

2.  Hire and train your staff to know your products.  Tape measures are not detonators.  If your sales staff can't answer simple measurement questions then they shouldn't be selling appliances.

3.  Retain and promote individuals that actually care about the job they are doing.  The floor manager at the last Big Box store we were at was a one man wrecking crew.  Whatever he is being paid isn't enough.

4.  Follow up when you say you will follow up.  A simple phone call solves many, many problems and alleviates negative perceptions if person calling is sincere in wanting to help...even when they can't.

And that's all I have to say about that!
So, the Oscars were on last night.  I didn't watch most of it as I cannot stand the self-importance of the entire affair.  Actors are dullards, for the most part.  They read other people's words aloud, and they can't even get that right...otherwise there wouldn't be directors.  The work of an actor is neither brave nor harrowing, it's role playing.  Why they behave as if their job is the single hardest job in the world is beyond me...and why we have a night set aside each year to kiss their asses as they contort to congratulate themselves is a mystery as well. 

Seth McFarlane wasn't a bad host, but he held back.  Why he didn't tear the entire premise of the Oscars apart limb from limb is beyond me.  His restraint was obvious, which is why so many jokes and gags fell flat.  If there ever was an awards show that needed to be skinned, flayed, and tossed into the flames it would be the Oscars.  That's what makes Jennifer Lawrence awesome.  Yeah, she's happy she won, but she's sees award season for the overwrought dipsh*ttery it is.  Here's hoping she stays grounded and doesn't fall into the same trap that seems to have swallowed Lindsay Lohan whole....

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