Nobody Called Me Back

Is Customer Service Dead?

Nobody Called Me Back

Nobody called me back. I am not exaggerating. Not the car “service” people. Not the doctor’s office. And not even our contractor. Is customer service dead?

I called the local car dealership three times last week. Our fancy Ford Mustang Mach-E electric car frightening stopped running on a major roadway and had to be towed there four weeks ago and we’re still waiting for it to be repaired.

I called, wanting to know when we might get it back. How unreasonable, right? Actually, the dealership has had two tries at fixing the car. We got it back after about two and a half weeks — for all of 16 hours. I drove it 3 ½ a block out onto the same busy intersection and it immediately shut down again. The EXACT same problem.

Nobody Called Me Back

On Tuesday, I called the “service” manager (an inappropriately titled fellow if ever there was). Tim said he had no idea the status of the repair, but that he’d get back to me “tomorrow.” Well, I’m not sure of his definition of “tomorrow,” but by mid-day, I got tired of waiting and called again, attempting to reach the general manager.

Well, the GM apparently is in the FBI’s Witness Protection Program because a sales representative refused to connect me to him or even give me his name. Instead the sales rep “offered” to help me and personally investigate the matter. Blake “promised” he’d get back to me “soon.” That was Wednesday. As of the writing of this blog, a week later, I haven’t heard from Blake either. Maybe he’s now in Witness Protection too?

I’ve tried leaving a message on the dealership’s general voice mailbox, asking the GM to “Please, please, PLEASE call me.” I used my sweetest voice and tried my best to suppress the desperation in my tone, but I doubt I succeeded.

So, now I’m left wondering:

  1. Does Corwin Ford Reno understand that they are in possession of our property?
  2. Does the dealership have any concept of the phrase “customer service?”
  3. Does the staff understand the idea of common courtesy?
  4. Is the Ford Mustang Mach-E a lemon or is the car dealership one?

The No Call Parade Continues

And my pain isn’t just vehicular!

I’m also stalled trying to set up medical appointments. This task is not easy to do in Reno. There’s a crush of people who have moved here (many like myself from California) and getting appointments with medical providers is a pain.

Wait lists are long even if you have a somewhat pressing need to be seen. Yet, ask to be put on a cancelation list and receptionists respond with incredulity, acting as if you have insulted them. “We DON’T maintain cancelation lists. But you can call as often as you’d like to see if we have any last-minute openings.” What is an in-pain impatient would-be patient supposed to do?  Act like a stalker? Call every morning?

As for leaving a message to ask a question of your medical provider? Expect an answer? Well, forget about that!

Next in the Queue

Next on the “Thou Shall Not Return My Phone Calls” list” is our contractor. Now, this is a man we have paid mucho mula to over the course of our yearlong Reno renovation. You would think he of all people would call me back! Alas, no.

I left a message, asking if our new garage door had arrived — the one we’ve been waiting for since last July and when we might expect to have it installed, because “Geez, whiz, golly, won’t it be swell to actually pull our car into our garage!”

No reply.

So six days later, HH left a message. Within minutes, he got a return call. Of course!

The Silent Treatment

Now, you’d think that since I’m a writer, I’d be used to the silent treatment from people I contact. Writers (unless they are big-time hotshot writers) constantly send out query letters and never hear back from editors. They never even get back from form replies offering the basics of “Yeah, we’ve received your submission. Now go away. If we care, we’ll let you know. Otherwise, go to Hell and bake bagels!”

But this rudeness from a customer service perspective is driving me absolutely crazy. I cannot tell you how furious I am. It has put an absolute damper on my entire week. I feel powerless and for some odd reason, old.

When I was a reporter, people almost always called me back — and promptly too! Even if it was to say, “No Comment.”

When I worked in the executive branch of state and federal government, people always called me back because they thought I was powerful and might help them. I wasn’t powerful, but if I could help them and it was appropriate, I tried.

And when I worked in the non-profit sector … Well, that was good training for today, because the shoe was on the proverbial other foot. I was the one in need. I was calling for help on behalf of my clients, seeking grant support or in-kind donations, or policy support. Yes, then, I was the one who didn’t get return calls.

So, I Sit, and Stew

While I have no big conclusion to this blog, it is interesting how a week’s worth of “no return calls” has generated this sense of helplessness and old age as if those two words were somehow synonymous.

Still, enough! Time to get moving. Time to get another Uber, so I can go to the market. Hopefully, they’ll respond to the app!

Apologies for the not-so-light lament. Sometimes a middle-aged muddler’s just got to vent!

4 replies
  1. Barbara
    Barbara says:

    I am waiting over 14 months for a replacement of a kitchen ceiling fixture. Runaround after runaround. Have to flick my wall switch on and off up to 15 times to get the fluorescent light in the kitchen to go on. They are “working on it.”

    • Karen Galatz
      Karen Galatz says:

      So much fun!
      And the update on our car? After calls to the national Ford customer service assistance line, someone has been “assigned” to look at what’s wrong with our car – meaning our vehicle has simply sat in the dealership repair shop with no one doing anything for the past two weeks!

  2. Karen
    Karen says:

    You are not alone. I have taken to visiting the local urgent care office that has the best reviews for a fall and sore backside.
    It is almost impossible to get a response back in a timely matter on most things


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