I have seen bad press/reviews about Fry's Electronics customer service all over the internet. People bad-mouth the attitudes of the floor associates on a rather frequent basis. Well, I am adding my two cents and agreement to such today.
I had called Verizon to find out what is wrong with this mobile broadband device. After some discussion, the lady stated that the simm card needs to be replaced. Great, how do I get that done? Go into any authorized Verizon outlet and they will replace it for free. Okay, can I take it back to Fry's Electronics, where I purchased the plan/device? Yes, that will work fine.
I put it off until today. I could not get on the internet with that thing at all. It showed that I was in 4g network and that it was pumping out information, but my laptop was showing "no internet service" under the Verizon connection.
So, on the way home from work, a stop at Fry's Electronics. I don't go there much because - yes - I don't much care for the attitudes of much of the sales associates that I encounter. I am not banning the place, especially considering it's less than 2 miles from my house, but isn't my first choice for a place to buy much of anything - or second choice for that matter.
So, I walk in an show the device to a guy standing at a podium near the entrance. No, you don't have to do anything (I asked if I need the thing tagged or something before going in there with it), just go ahead and take it in. Okay. I walk up to the cell phone display which is also where they have these devices. 3 Fry's associates standing there gabbing away, completely ignoring anyone. I patiently waited for a couple of minutes before finally, a black dude comes walking up. I tell him what Verizon told me on the phone.
Well we don't do that here. We are not an authorized dealer. ??? How can you sell Verizon wireless plans and phones if you are not an authorized dealer? was my reply. Well we just can't do that here, he says. I'm sorry, I replied, but and again, how do you sell Verizon phones and service plans/contracts without being an authorized dealer? Because, he replies and getting very short, curt and attempting to engage in what appeared to be a stare-down, we are not an authorized dealer. Well, this is going nowhere fast, especially his unbelievable attitude. How does this guy make any money attempting to sell products with THAT kind of crap going on?
Perhaps he is only paid by the hour. As he absolutely refused to help me, I asked to speak to management. He pointed me towards the door. I looked over at the little counter where they did the paperwork for the contract I signed and said, no, it's over there. No, management is over here and I would rather have them deal with you at this point. Stated in a way that I cannot fully express here, with facial and body movements/tones that most people would find nothing short of outrageous.
I said find, let's go. He THEN started to tell my why they are a not an authorized dealer, but I had heard enough of this guy. No, sir, you don't want to deal with me, remember? I don't even want to hear your voice anymore, I will just take this - and your attitude - up with your management. He started spouting off again, which is when I again informed him that I didn't want to hear the sound of his voice at this point. Well, we are at the apparent manager's location and he starts informing me that if I continue, he will have me escorted out of there. ???!!!
That's where he crossed the line. He should have just let it go, I would have just moved on with management and that would have been the end of it. I informed him yet again that I did not want to hear his voice, please discontinue your speech. He then asked me if I had heard what he said? I didn't CARE what he said at that point. I will have LT (whatever that means) escort you out of here right now. He had also stated that I had bared my teeth at him and that he wasn't a dog. Just unbelievable.
With unbelievable good fortune, however, his direct manager was standing RIGHT there when he was threatening to have me removed. I was not hostile or angry in any way, appalled, yes, but I was refraining myself from letting loose on this guy with how I really felt about him. So, completely unphased that a manager is standing there, another threat to have me removed. The manager steps in at this point. He says, this is the manager and I went on to tell her nothing about the reason I went in there but everything about how this guy was treating me. I asked for higher level management, please. She was just a floor supervisor, I wanted this escalated. She said sure and disappeared around a wall for several minutes.
I recognized the manager that came out and knew I had the right person. He went straight to the sales associate and escorted him back towards the cell phone display, his arm around the guy's back. The guy didn't want to leave is the point, apparently he wanted to just continue with his threats. They stopped and started a discussion of which I have no privy to what was being said, though I could imagine. The pudding was in the proof: the supervisor was balking at that dude while expressing her sincere apologies to me for the way that guy had been talking to me. She went on and on about how rude that guy was being and then another floor associate that had also heard it chimed in the same sentiments.
Finally, a situation such as this where the right people witnessed and heard enough of the event to give validity to it. The conversation over there went on for several minutes and then the manager came up, apologized for that man's attitude as well and then we started discussing the problem. Well, I told him the same thing about the simm card. Okay, well let's see what we can do. We headed straight for the counter that the black dude did not want me to go to when I had asked for a manager. I could get one, yes, I find out, but it's going to cost $5 - but then I was told it was actually $3. Well, I was already here, $3 isn't enough for me to want to leave and go find the thing for free at an "authorized" center - which never was explained to me, but is not a moot point.
Turns out they had a whole STACK of simm cards. I start looking over at the black guy who is, of course, completely ignoring me at this point. No, they don't do that here, right? They do it, they just charge you for the new card. Well the charge is so minimal that I didn't even give it a second thought, as I already stated, let's switch it out. Well the whole ordeal of calling Verizon, getting my account, me verifying who I am, authorizing the new card, etc etc etc. I pulled out $5 and the manager stated no, we'll just give it to you for your inconvenience. Okay. In my mind I was thinking: they should offer me 20% off my next purchase. But I said nothing but thank you and he left since I was being taken care of at that point, though he did offer a final apology for the trouble I had encountered.
If I have any consolation in this entire ordeal, it is that that dude got into trouble and with the witnesses? I am guessing he is going to have further problems with this incident. I hope so. How can you treat customers like that? Whatever.
I left the store, got into my car and got out the laptop. The internet came up and started working right away. Good sign, at least, but I was almost home already and had already been fooling with it all day long, had no desire to continue with it. I will fool with it later or even tomorrow as right now? Just chillin' on my desktop computer.
Friday, February 24, 2012
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