2007 Setting Expectations
Last week my wife and I left Best Buy in Emeryville, California a little shell shocked we dropped a considerable amount of money on a Plasma screen and a BOSE surround sound system. Sure we got the $150 gift card for the TV and the $50 gift card for the BOSE system.
But we also bought the really expensive cables and a 4 year warranty which the two person sales team who deftly worked on us said we would be insane not to buy. “Your regular warranty ends in a year! What will you do then?” The large sales guy said to us with a smirk? My wife and I looked at each other and shrugged. “OK.” I said mentally watching our checking account shrink.
“And who is going to set this up for you?” He asked. “My wife looked at me quizzically. As my manhood shrank away to nothing I said. “How much?” The salesman said” Only $200 more but you can put your two new gift cards towards it!” Hmm that was easy.
Then I asked.”Will they hook up the Tivo and make sure it works? He smiled and said.”Oh yeah everything will work and they will calibrate your TV so it is perfect. Plus show you how to use everything so you are completely comfortable.”
So we slid our credit card, signed and walked to the car not speaking much. We both agreed that we felt abused, but we knew it was was our own fault. We both work really hard so we deserve a new System. Our old TV we bought 8 years ago, our surround sound system was a hand me down from an old office mate really don’t work very well anymore.
Last night the Best Buy service guys came by, its Super Bowl season and its been a crazy day for them they told me right away. They were exhasuted and overworked today. I had taken the afternoon off work because they were coming 12-5pm. I looked at my watch 7pm. Hmm, ok well they are here.
They said sorry they were late and sorry they didn’t call. They had no lunch break all day. My wife asked if they wanted something to eat. They said they couldnt accept anything. They plugged in the expensive cables. I asked why doesn’t the plasma TV come with cables that work with it. They laughed and said. “Best Buy makes all its money from selling these cables” Nice, real nice.
After 1o minutes they said.”The Tivo would not work I needed a splitter to make it work with the TV.” “Don’t you don’t have one in one of the two vans you guys drove up in. “That’s not our deal he said.” He showed me what to buy at Radio Shack and where to put it. They then showed us the 3 remotes to use the system. ‘”If you had the splitter he said you could eliminate the one remote.”
They then did a 5 minute tutorial on turning on the TV and the BOSE together. They then said they really needed to go and get something to eat. I asked if they would be calibrating the system. “Oh you don’t need that.”
They left. I then felt like I had been gang raped by Best Buy. And paid a ton for the experience.
We had a vacation to beautiful Sayulita, Mexico last month. In preparation I called Cingular or ATT or which name they are going by this month about my cell phone. I do own a business and I wanted to be able to check the office phones. I asked them if I could buy an add on service to my cell phone so I would not be ass raped on my bill. (sorry starting to get angry) They then said sure and signed me up for an additional $5 month so it would be affordable enough to use while in Mexico. Cool I thought.
As we arrived in Mexico my phone did not work. I could not call anyone or receive any calls. The whole vacation. I have unlimited use of my web and email with my package with Cingular/ATT here in the states. Yesterday right before the BEST BUY guys came over I opened my mail. $1195 dollars for my Cingular bill. Data charges. When I woke up from the floor with a gash in my head I went upstairs to change my shorts and call Cingular. I was on hold for 15 minutes then somehow disconnected. Then I called back and was on hold for 25 minutes. The most offensive thing was the on-hold ads which blurted all these great options for Cingular, get this, get that. The looping happy lady told me for 25 minutes how wonderful all these new options could be for me. My call waiting came suddenly on my phone. It was the Best Buy technician guys. I couldn’t take a chance answering it. So I let it go to voice mail. A real Cingular person finally came on and I explained to her my problem. She said she couldn’t help me that her supervisor could not help me. She said she would fill out a form and send it straight to cingular.(who was I talking to?) Someone should call me in 3-4 weeks. I told her I have direct payment so they would need to credit my account. She said she was sure it wouldn’t be a problem. ” She then said. Thank you for using Cingular may I provide you with anymore excellent service?” “Nope” I said as I kept my true feelings inside so I would not scream obscenities at this nice impressionable lady from a call center in Utah. I am sure I would be calling back in a few weeks.
Nice my first ass rape of the day. I am all ready for the Best Buy guys.
We are getting this new plasma screen delivered so my wife wants to surprise me with HBO so she calls Comcast and the sales guy who answers says. “You can buy the package with the phone service and the HBO upgrade for this great new special they are running. “My wife says. “We don’t want a phone we use our cell phones.” He says. “I don’t think we can do that.” Then silence. My wife says. “So you are saying I am wanting to buy more cable from you as my cable company but you cant do it unless I get a phone service also? “Yes” the operator said followed by silence. “OK well I guess I will call back later.” Then the operator says his canned closing. “Thank you for using Comcast Cable and can I provide you with anymore excellent service?” She called back later and got HBO for us. Tony Soprano wouldn’t take this sort of crap.
Got a call out of the blue from the sales guy at Toyota today wanted to know how our Prius was doing. I wont go into the experience of buying the car because that happened a while back. He of course did not know our car was in the service area of where he was calling us from. This post is about Robins post on Seth Godins blog today. We experienced the same thing. Our service light popped on and we took it in to the Toyota dealer. Toyota needed to do the 25-30 whatever point inspection. Basically we got the oil changed. It cost $300 dollars for the service. 78 dollars for parts $200 for labor. They had the car all day. we also asked them to fix the cracked windshield. They did not do it. But the topper was what Robin also noticed is the car had not been vacuumed or washed. They had the car all day and of all that $200 of labor they didn’t even bother to wash the car, or wipe the dashboard. Petty huh, but for $300? You make the call on that one. I say BS.
As Robin said: To raise someones expectations then not fulfill them is worse than mediocrity.
We are getting a lot of that lately and my ass hurts.