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What About This…? 10.10.2013

By Wayne William Cipriano

Have you ever wondered who asks F.A.Q.s?

None, that’s who. Not frequently, not even occasionally, possibly, not ever. Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.) seem to be a way for companies to save money in at least two ways: 1) they can fire all those who used to answer their telephones and who could at times answer customer questions; 2) they can avoid answering questions that might negatively impact their business without resorting to moderate deception or outright lies.

I suppose a website or an automatic telephone system could be a good idea when simple answers are provided to simple question: How much? Guarantee? How fast? Business address? You know the frequently asked questions that companies hear from customers.

Unfortunately, the robot responses are to questions like: “Is your company the best company of all time?”   “Are your customers completely satisfied by your products?” and “How can I send your company money?”   And, my favorite, “Can you list every product and service you supply and every application of the product and service?”

Nobody likes long hold-times waiting for a human being in real time. And nobody likes finally speaking with a company representative who then confesses they have no idea how to answer our question. But of what use is an immediate connection to a plethora of information that is useless to us?

Many who are as old as I or older remember a quaint business concept of the past known as Customer Attention. How can a business possibly suggest that customers come first when they haven’t communicated directly with one in years?

And, where do all those replaced company representatives, who used to speak with us, go for a job when answering the phone is no longer a human occupation?

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