Bad Customer Service Is a Mental Health Threat

by Bill Brenner on July 17, 2014

There’s a reason the recorded call with a belligerent Comcast employee went viral. It wasn’t for sheer entertainment value, though some will undoubtedly find it amusing.

It’s because practically every Comcast customer has suffered one of those dreadful service calls. For Erin and me, the last such experience was a couple weeks ago, when we called for repairs to our Internet service.

Mood music:

In the case making news, a customer service rep gave one couple hell because they wanted to drop their cable service. The rep belligerently asks the same questions over and over again, trying to wear down the couple in hopes that they’ll give up and stick with their service.

In our case, we called for the simple reason that our Internet was down (it turned out to be a fried modem). During the course of the conversation, the rep tried getting us to repurchase the cable we dropped a couple years ago. Erin had to say no more than once. We’re already a customer for Internet service, and the rep’s job is to help us with our existing service. She shouldn’t have been trying to sell us something on a tech support call.

We have thick skin and can repel the pressure well enough. But it’s still a stressful experience.

Picture someone who suffers from anxiety, depression and other mental maladies. A call like that isn’t merely stressful and annoying, it’s traumatic.

I know because it was hell for me in the years before I got my fear and anxiety under control.

Back then, I would be terrified every time I had to call a customer service rep for anything. The prospect of being put on hold for 20 minutes or more was a killer. When the service rep who eventually answered would start pushing the importance of buying additional services, my mind would melt. When you can’t control your emotions, you can’t tell when someone’s urgency is truly warranted. Sometimes I caved into purchases we didn’t need, just to shut the person up.

I know a lot of people who are customer service reps for a variety of companies. They care deeply about the customers and do everything to serve them well.

But without a doubt, some reps are predators. They prey on the weak and are a threat to the mental well-being of some of their customers.

I’m glad this particular rep from Comcast aimed at the wrong couple and got exposed.

Van with Comcast Sux on it

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: