Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Power of Persistence

About a month ago, I found my "perfect" black shoes. They were perfect until they started to jam my left knee each time I wore them. So I stopped wearing them.

Then I called the store I bought them at, explained my problem, and they said they wouldn't take them back. The guy said they'd only take them back in perfect, unworn (wearing around the house was ok) condition. "We're not Nordstrom's," he said. I said, "Well, you're a store that advertises itself as selling comfortable walking shoes, and these clearly aren't. So, I've paid $130 for a pair of useless shoes, and you won't take them back?" Him: "That is correct." In the end, he was a jerk and nothing happened.

Then, I called corporate customer service. The guy I talked to there said I could mail them in and I would get a check by mail (I originally paid cash for the shoes).

This all happened a couple weeks ago. I've spent an inordinate amount of time in my primary client's office, and I haven't been able to get to a post office. Since nearly a month has passed, I decided to try and call corporate customer service again, to make sure I wasn't going over any time limits they had for returns.

Corporate customer service is closed for the weekend.

So I called the original location of the store I went to, with the intent of asking them if there was a time limit for returns by mail. I briefly explained how I needed to mail the shoes since the other store wouldn't take them, and...the guy started laughing.

Him: "Of COURSE you can return them!"
Me: "To the store?"
Him: "Of course."
Me: "But the guy at the location I bought them at said I could only return them if they were unworn."
Him: "That's nonsense. The shoes don't work for you, you can return them."
Me: "Can I return them to your location, instead?"
Him: "Yes. Just ask for me. I'm L**."

I explained that the shoes did have some normal wear (even though I wore them maybe five times), and he said that was still ok.

In the end, a little persistence, mixed with a little delay in getting to the post office, is saving me postage and hassle. It also goes to show that just accepting what one person tells you isn't the wisest course of action. I had been quite surprised that the first guy said I couldn't return the shoes (there isn't anything about returns printed on the receipt). Then, instead of calling another store, I called the corporate customer service number I found online.

Sadly, this is why I don't like talking to most customer service reps in the first place -- they just don't know basic things and correct procedures, and it also takes far longer to get any/correct information from them. So often, recently, whenever I call a customer service number, I end up talking to someone who doesn't know what they're talking about, and it takes upwards of five minutes to re-explain and have them still not understand. Then, once I get to talk to a supervisor or manager, everything is resolved in under a minute. Which just goes to show the people on the front lines are often mis-informed or just don't know -- and this is why I don't trust them when I'm told something against what I expect.

So now, I get to go to a group yard sale a friend is participating in (since I don't have to go out of my way to find a post office open on Saturdays), AND I will be getting a refund on the shoes.

Persistence and not accepting what just one person tells you pays.

1 comment:

Jerry said...

Amen, sister. Persistence always leads to results. This has happened with me time and time again. If I don't like a particular answer, I'll call back and ask for someone else. There's no insurance you'll get everything you want but it doesn't hurt to keep trying. You usually get want you want.