Customer Bullying: The Anti-Customer Service

You know, when it comes to customer service do’s and don’ts, I thought I had seen it all. But life always hides an ace up her sleeve as a poor comrade of mine found out when he went to buy a new truck.

He’s had his current vehicle—a Ford Escort—for roughly ten years. It’s been a good vehicle, survived the abuse that comes with a college student’s lifestyle as well as the stop-and-go traffic of a young professional’s commute route, and so on; but my friend due for an upgrade. He really wants a truck instead of a sedan and has been doing research for quite a while and finally decided that it was time to go take a visual inspection of what is currently on the market.

He went to a dealership and he found a truck that he liked. He worked a deal out with the salesman and said that he would like a few days to check his numbers one last time to make sure he could afford the payments. The salesman agreed and gave my friend four days.

Well, the economy has not been kind to any of us and it isn’t getting better in a hurry, so my friend chose to be cautious and didn’t get the truck. The salesman was disappointed, but understood and made sure that my friend had his card for whenever my friend decided to get a new vehicle.

My friend was pleased with the service he had gotten and planned on going back whenever he could take on the extra burden of a car payment…..until the phone calls started coming.

The salesman’s manager wasn’t at all pleased that the deal had fallen through and took it upon himself to start phone bullying my friend in hopes of pushing my friend into a deal that he couldn’t afford. This went on for two weeks but finally stopped when my friend made some business threats of his own.

My question in all of this is: how stupid can a manager be to think that bullying a customer into a deal will work? Apparently, that manager was absent the day that the lesson on bullying was taught in kindergarten. You know, how it’s wrong to do it? Obviously, that dealership lost not just my friend’s business, but the business of every person he told.

Moral of the story:

Be nice to your customers and treat them like gold because bullying them into something they can’t afford is bad for everybody.

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