Lee Valley Customer Service

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Hello All,
Recently, I ordered a few items from Lee Valley, and when I received the order, I found they had sent me the wrong clamps for the dust collection hose I ordered. I e-mailed their customer service that night and here is the reply I received the next morning:
<"We are sorry to hear about the problem that you have encountered with the clamps and the hose being in opposite directions in your order. I have the hose (03J6506) and the Clamp (03J6606) at my desk and have confirmed the problem. I am sending you two Clockwise Clamps (CW), 03J6706 which I have confirmed work with the Hose 03J6506. They will leave our warehouse Monday and you should receive them within 2 to 3 business days. We are also sending this information to our Quality Assurance Department to look into."
Regards,
Dennis Stimson
Internet Customer Services Representative>
I received the replacement clamps today (Wed) as promised. Now thats what I call great customer service!
Ronnie
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No big deal - that's their NORMAL customer service - every now and then they do something REALLY exceptional!
Great company - great products - great service.
Boy! if THAT doesn't get me a freebie from Robin, nothing will. :)
Vic
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On 12 Apr 2006 15:06:41 -0700, "shooter"

Yeah, aren't they great? I think they ought to teach classes for other companies on how customer service is done.
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Won't do any good, too many people don't care how they spend, where they spend. Just that they can spend. Too much work to use your money as a weapon to get better service/choice/quality/price. Consumer dept rising faster then income.
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Well I am totally a LeeValley fan but that is what I would call Good "Recover from a Fumble" Service. Great customer service would not have let that happen in the first place.
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Yeah, because you've never made a mistake at work, right? GMAFB. Mistakes happen, even to companies with "great customer service". Now, if they didn't go back to QA to make sure it doesn't happen again, then I'd ding them.
todd
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I agree, shit happens, it is how you recover from it that separates the good from the bad. I bought a Delta table saw from the "real", local, tool crib, (not Amazon!), a few years back. It was missing the blade wrench. I told the gent at the counter at 5:00 PM. It was in my mailbox when I got home the next day! Most companies will not ship anything out the same day ordered after 3:00. How they got it mailed 300 miles overnight, regular mail, messed up my mind! Greg
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Where did you read that? With your response I take it that you are conditioned to think that a company that makes mistakes should be given the recognition of having Great customer service because they are fix the mistake. Again that is simply a Good recovery from a Fumble. Don't get me wrong, I think they do a good job compared to most but I don't consider a mistake getting out great customer service. Its simply the right thing to do to bend over backwards to correct a mistake as they "should" do. IF you have read other posts concerning this company you will find that not every one feels that LV has a wonderful record. I have never had a reason to complain but will not doubt that others have. Like you inferred, people make mistakes. Great customer service does not include shipping wrong parts to a customer. The fewer the mistakes, like LV enjoys, the better.
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I agree. What the OP experienced was customer *satisfaction* as opposed to customer *service*.
Lee Valley excels at both, in my experience.
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By your definition, there are no companies with "great customer service", since undoubtedly all of them have made mistakes on shipments. You confuse "great customer service" with perfection. The latter doesn't exist in this world.
todd
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No, I am simply saying that when a customer has to be involved in correcting a mistake in his order he is not receiving Great Customer service. There certainly may and will be times when all goes well and he receives his order as expected. In that instance he has received great customer service. Me helping a company correct their mistake is NOT what I call Great Customer service. And yes, I do view Great Customer service with Perfection. No company is incapable of perfection at least some of the time. With respect to a company making less mistakes and delivering what a customer expects the company is that much closer to perfection. Working in the right direction towards perfection is both good for the company and the customer.
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Leon wrote:

I think you have that backwards. If there's no mix up, there's no customer service. There's great order taking, great shipping, etc. Only when there's a problem does the service enter the picture.
I'm fond of saying that everyone makes mistakes, it's how quickly they pick up the pieces that makes the difference.
R
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No, that is not correct. Customer service is getting the order to the customer as he expects. It's the whole transaction from the first phone call to the delivery of the order. If the customer gets what he expects in all respects, "That IS good customer service." Before retiring I worked as the GM of an AC/Delco distributer that sold only to GM dealers. We were not perfect however I can honestly say that out of the millions of parts that we delivered to our customers we made 4 or 5 mistakes a year on average. We literally tripple checked every order by 3 seperate people before packaging and shipping. We had a big incentive to not make mistakes. If we delivered, our driver counted the pieces as he unloaded. That attention to detail was a small part of what we considered good customer service.

Well maybe that is what you have learned to accept. I will totally agree however, EVERYONE makes mistakes but good service is seeing that the customer never has to call back except to spend more money and good service is instrumental in the customer not having to see the mistakes. Fixing the mistake is the very minimum level of customer service a company has to offer.
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Leon wrote:

Au contraire, mon ferret! You seem to have lumped together internal order picking procedures with external customer interaction. Different fleas on the same animal.
Using your definition and logic, anything that improved the company is "customer service", and that's simply not true. Customer service is the interaction between the company rep and the customer. This from Answers.com:
Factors which contribute to Good Customer Service
* Friendly and helpful staff * Staff with ability to listen * Appropriate tone of voice * Approachable staff * Staff displaying appropriate body language * Staff with good product knowledge * How staff greet the customer * Understanding the customers needs * Staff with good soft skills * Wide product range * Good quality products/services provided * Long opening hours * Delivery service (if possible)
Notice the preponderance of people skill and convenience factors? Those are what customer service is all about.
Filling an order correctly is no more about customer service than is a company's accounting practices. If the company overcharged your credit card, is that poor customer service? If they undercharged your card, is that _good_ customer service? ;)
R
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RicodJour wrote:
[snip of happy smiley]

Definitely a marketers spin on service...
er
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snipped for brevity

No need to call the guy vermin, (but I'm sure that was meant in the cute,cuddly furry sort of way); I'm kind of with Ric on this.
I work for a small phone company, we have 4 people who make up a department called "Customer Service". They do the things you might expect: take payments, respond to customer inquiries, complaints and take requests for new or discontinued service.
We also have linemen and installers who bring phone lines to residences and business. Although they play a huge role in bringing our product to our customers, which incedentally happens to be called a "service", I do not consider their role to be "customer service".
At least from a business perspective, "customer service" refers to a very specific set company functions.
-Steve
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NewsGuy.Com 30Gb $9.95 Carry Forward and On Demand Bandwidth

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Really, every one doing his part and doing it well contributes to customer service. If the linemen and installers worked slowly and or does shotty work in a customers house the customer would certainly be receiving poor customer service.

Customer service is every thing that a company does to fulfill its obligations to its customers. Whether or not the company does this so elegantly that the customer never notices does not diminish this as an important offering of good customer service. Every thing that the company does to catch and prevent the customer from having a problem with his order before the customer knows about the problem is a part of customer service. If the customer has to become involved in the correction of a mix up, the company has let the customer down in this aspect. The very minimum that a customer can expect a company to do is to Quickly correct the problem and take measures to see that this does not become a reoccurring event. Every thing that very every one does to insure that a customer gets what he expects is all a part of working towards delivering good customer service.
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I spent 7 years as a Service Representative in what you call a "Customer Service" department, so I am quite familiar with the functions of such a department.

For the past 19 years I've performed these functions, also. Installation and repair, residential, small and large business, data circuits, and cable repair. Each job involves a phone call to the customer to verify the need for the visit and confirm access, a knock on the door, an explanation or discussion of the work needed and completed, and often a follow up call to verify customer satisfaction. I and my coworkers are probably the only company "faces" our customers will ever see.

Apparently, by restricting "customer service" to your office workers, your company is missing out on providing service to your customers. Ask Robin Lee if the guy in the shipping department is any less responsible for providing good "customer service" than the guy who takes the order. The order taker simply promises the service. It is the shipping clerk that delivers the service. Both are necessary to satisfy the customer.
Fortunately my company recognizes this. So much so that I am not called an installer, a repairman, or a lineman. My title is "Customer Services Specialist", because my job is not primarily to repair, or install phone lines to provide dial tone, but to provide service to the customer.
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You missed my point. I'm saying that one common definition of "customer service" is a specific job description. Sure, we all contribute directy or indirectly to customer's satisfaction.
-Steve
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The direction this thread has taken reminds me of a line I heard recently from a stand-up comic:
'A friend and I got into an argument over the meaning of "semantics." '
Mike
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