Monday, March 12, 2012

Did you look with your hands?

When i was growing up, i was taught the proper way to look for something that i was trying to find. If i didn't search thoroughly enough, and went to my mother for help she would simply reply "Did you look with your hands?". The question implying that i went into my room, glanced around at the walls, and then went to her satisfied that i had given it my all in my search...rather than moving stuff around, looking in drawers, leaving no rock unturned. 


The concept of actually putting effort into something you attempt to do wasn't unique to just trying to find an object. My father also would tell me "Anything worth doing, is worth doing right." along with "Putting the extra work to get something done right now, will save you a lot of time in the long run"


 So fast forward to now, where i have to interact with coworkers, and contacts from 3rd party companies we do business with. I get frustrated enough when i don't feel like my co-workers are using their brain, pulling their weight in a project, or if i feel they're doing just enough to check something off their list. But when i have to deal with that kind of stuff from people in other companies, where i can't speak my mind about it, i just...well...i write a blog about it! 


I work for a recent start-up that just got through it's first year of business with all sails still catching wind, my main responsibility is programming. A company that we work with, i won't say which one (but if you work for that company, please take what i say to heart...and fix it.), is constantly pushing my buttons. Since i was their first contact, when i programmed our system to work with their API, word got around that i was the man to contact for any an ALL questions even if it has nothing to do with making sure the system is working, or programming. 


I constantly get emails from people in one of their departments claiming that they have been unsuccessful in getting in contact with a customer of ours, and have exhausted all their resources. When we first started doing business together, i was more than happy to oblige them and see what i could do to help (my intent was to cement a good rapport in our business relationship). However, as time went on, i began to notice that rarely did they ever fit what i would consider "exhausting their resources". I could see that our system sent them a contract just a few hours before i would get an email from them pleading for my help. So after a few hours of trying (my assumption is a single attempt was made on all available phone numbers supplied), they had resolved that their resources were exhausted


Imagine any programmer you know (we, in general, are very impatient with the general public), and please imagine a vein bulging out of his\her forehead. 
 I started ignoring these emails until i would get a second one from the same person for the same person, at which point i'd forward it on to our customer service team, and reply back stating that we were going to attempt to reach out to the customer on their behalf. Today, however, i decided to be nice. I had already accomplished a lot today and was feeling extremely generous, so within a few minutes of receiving their email, on good faith (assuming sufficient time had elapsed to justify their "exhausted" claim), i stopped the work i was doing and forwarded it to our customer service team, then replied back stating we were going to help. A few minutes later, i get a reply back stating that they were able to get in contact with the customer, and everything is good to go! 


 ...so i look at the order and see they received just under an hour ago. At what point, during that hour, did they decide that they had "exhausted" all their resources? Do they have lead handsets on their phone? Are their keypads backed by 10 pound springs making it incredibly hard to push down the buttons to dial someone's number? Maybe they're forced to do push-ups while their manager sits on their back whenever they make an outbound call...who knows? 


What i DO know, however, is that in the future...i'm far less likely to be generous with those individuals, no matter how chipper my mood is.

2 comments :

Adiel Cloud said...

That has got to be the best picture of you ever taken. ;)

Adam Cloud said...

Thank you! I took 5 pictures before i was able to get a shot where i looked annoyed enough for the post :)