I trekked into The Apple Store Monday morning to see if they would replace my adapter cord free of charge (as they did with my first one) after it frayed and stopped working.
Upon entering the store the greeter “Genius” noted my problem, said it wouldn’t be an issue to replace (for free) and sent me to the second line for my replacement part.
This was their first mistake! After waiting for about 20 minutes the problem solver “Genius” examined my cord and determined the damaged to be “accidental” so I would have to pay for the replacement part.
I was a bit irked, but understood, since technically it was my fault the cord was damaged (I’m pretty sure I ran over it with my desk chair or my pup Murphy nibbled on it).
When you’re in the Customer Service industry it’s better to under promise and OVER deliver than to disappoint customer.
During our exchange, I took the opportunity to tell him that although I understand they can’t be liable for all accidents, I found the quality and durability of the product to be particularly bad, given that the material frays very easily and that this was my third cord in two years.
I supported my statement, with the example that my older MacBook’s charger seemed to be much more durable and thicker – I’ve had it for 6 years with no problems (knock on wood) and have read similar comments from MacBook Pro owners in online forums.
He insisted that the cords were the same and was very argumentative with me. I literally had to end our conversation by saying, “I don’t want to argue with you anymore, I’m just trying to provide you with feedback.”
My problem solver “Genius” missed a critical step in Apple’s official steps of service – Listening!!
Apple Steps of Service
Approach customers with a personalized warm welcome;
Probe politely to understand all the customer’s needs;
Present a solution for the customer to take home today;
Listen for and resolve any issues or concerns;
End with a fond farewell and an invitation to return
In order to create an exceptional customer service experience that will keep them coming back, spending more and positively referring others (even in service recovery), listen to your customer, under promise and over deliver, show them empathy, and treat each individual as they want to be treated.