2 December 2011

We have a Soul Too

This is a blog coming from the person on the other side of the phone.

In my line of work I deal with the general public on a daily basis, both on the phone and face to face.  I deal with people from all walks of life, from the rich to the poor, from the criminal to your average law abiding citizen.

What all of these people have in common is the inability to be polite on the phone.  Anyone who deals with the general public know the type.  The person who thinks that shouting, nastiness and general rudeness will magically make things happen faster, rectify problems and generally will get them what they want.  Let me give you a very large tip here, it doesn't.

Over the years I have been shouted at, verbally abused, sworn at, threatened and reduced to tears.  None of these things make me do my job better and they will not make me want to help you.

I know it is tempting when you have a problem and have to ring a company to chase a response or complain to shout at the person on the other end to get a more immediate response.  You may be angry about an issue, but believe me, shouting at the person answering your call is helping no one, except perhaps making you feel better.

When a person calls or comes into my office if they don't shout and say please and thank you like an ordinary human being then I will always go that extra mile to help them.  Obviously the nasty people are helped too, but I'm not going to bend over backwards to help someone who is shouting/verbally abusing me.

It is more often the case that the main result of an abusive call is that the caller themselves gets more angry, gets confused in what they are saying, goes round in circles and nothing is resolved anything.  Everyone loses.

What also irritates me is the amount of times that I will be shouted and/or sworn at by a client, and then once they are transferred to the person dealing with their matter, they suddenly turn into polite, well mannered people.  The monkeys deserve respect too, not just the organ grinders.

So next time you make a call to a company, customer services or whatever, please remember that it is actually a person on the other end of the line.  Because we have a soul too.  Take a breath before you call, don't swear, and we will get along fine.


  1. I do love to hate the general public.....

    For a start, there is the general abruptness/downright rudeness, as you have experienced, there is the utter stupidity (when working in the exciting world of pizza delivery, I once had a complaint a pizza was "covered in fish".... "well, you ordered anchovies, you did it yourself, online" - "yes, that's right, but I've got these fish things" (they wanted artichokes!)) and the amazing assumption that, because you are helping them/are paid less than them, you must be stupid.

    I think though that this is often exacerbated by the number of dimwits, who are incapable of sorting an issue out if it isn't a standard enquiry, that you often get on the end of the phone when you call a large company..... some people should not be allowed to answer the phone, as it lowers expectations of the general public when they call you: before you've even answered your phone!

  2. The general public, as a breed, usually rude.


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