How to bring back great customer service

April 3 2011 by Ellen Roseman

I kicked off my blog four years ago with Bell Blues. In my Star column, I recently moaned that Bell’s customer service is still inept, judging by the complaints I get from readers.

Even Bell’s attempt to send out $67.41 rebates, ordered by the regulator to customers who’d been overcharged, led to a new round of criticism.

How can a corporate culture be turned around? How can a company change its focus from cost cutting to investing in customer service?

Some people think social media can transform the way customers are treated. Check out a new book, The Thank You Economy , which says we’re back in a community where the individual voice matters a lot and the business owner needs to care.

Author Gary Vaynerchuk is a U.S. entrepreneur who built a big wine business with effective use of social media. You can download his first chapter for free here.

Word of mouth is back, he says. Any businessperson who can’t see the repercussions has his or her eyes closed.

When faced with bad service or unfair policies or plain old indifference, there’s something people can do. Now, if customers have a complaint that they can’t get resolved via traditional channels, they can post a frustrated status update or tweet that could get passed along forever.

Suddenly, everyone who’s ever had a problem with a company can compare notes, work himself or herself up into a righteous frenzy and build enough animosity via word of mouth to create a real PR nightmare.

The example he uses is AT&T, the U.S. phone company that mishandled a customer’s request and saw the complaint go viral. Suddenly, AT&T had a massive headache.

Everything is in reverse. Before, it made some financial sense for big business to simply ignore people they considered whiners and complainers. Now, dissatisfied, disappointed consumers have the power to make companies feel the pinch.

What a shame that’s what it’s going to take to make some executives take social media seriously.

This blog is part of the social media landscape in Canada, one of the few that takes consumer issues seriously. In my work, I try to advocate for people who feel stymied and hopeless in their dealings with large companies.

“When society cut the close personal ties that existed in older, smaller communities, people became like like ants scattered around a picnic table — really busy, really strong, but too far apart from one another to get much accomplished as a unit,” Vaynerchuk says.

“Now, the Internet has matured so that the power of social media can allow all the ants to collectively gather under the table, and they’re strong enough to haul it away if they so choose.”

So, let’s keep talking to each other and sharing our customer service stories in a forum that can’t be ignored. I’m posting some of the latest feedback on Bell’s bungling below.

My University of Toronto continuing education course, The Facts of Life about Your Finances, starts Thursday, April 7, and runs for six weeks. Here’s a link.

24 comments

  1. LW

    Apr 3 2011

    We have been Bell customers for many years, but in the past few years I have been dissatisfied with the service provided.

    My issues are mainly with incompetency by Bell first-line personnel, i.e. those who take your calls.

    We put our cottage phone on seasonal suspension for six months during the winter. There hasn’t been a year that I’ve not had some problem of one type of another.

    For example, last year I found that I was being charged for every long distance call. When I checked, the Bell long distance package that I’ve had for over 10 years was not put on.

    It should have just been a matter of reconnecting the package that had been in place for years.

    Last year, I decided to put the home phone on seasonal suspension since we now spend about four months at the cottage. I had problems with that, being charged for services that should have been on suspension.

    I finally got it resolved in late August. This time, I asked to speak to a supervisor, who then gave me the contact information for Customer Service at Head Office.

    I wrote a letter delineating my issues over the past 10 years with seasonal suspension. I did not get a response.

    I sent a fax including the original letter in January 2011. I still have not had an acknowledgment of either the letter or fax or a response.

    This is inexcusable customer service!

  2. EL

    Apr 3 2011

    Have you seen the Bell ad on TV featuring a cabin attendant asking customers to switch off their cell phones?

    She approaches one passenger and asks him to shut off his phone.

    Then she goes to the next one, who says he’s downloading something with a new feature Bell has. She stops by and watches him do his download. Allows him to continue.

    She approaches the next passenger and also asks him whether he is doing the Bell download. When he says no, she tells him to put his phone off.

    The first thought that came to mind when I saw it was the ad encapsulates Bell’s attitude: ARROGANT and DISHONEST.

  3. JDH

    Apr 3 2011

    It’s my turn to share another story regarding the Bell rebate cheques.

    Two weeks ago, my friends and neighbours received their rebate cheques. Mine never arrived, so I inquired and was assured it had been processed and was in the mail.

    This morning, I followed up again and was reassured the “cheque is in the mail”.

    I asked the CSR to confirm my mailing address. It was incorrect! There was no box number included in my address.

    The CSR has reissued the cheque. I should expect the replacement in 6-8 weeks. Their cheque cycle is that long!

    This is unacceptable! I have been a Bell customer at this address for 21 years. Each month, the bill for my Bell services finds me without fail.

    Last month, the bill was $225.81. I received it, no problem.

    Why would they not send a simple rebate cheque to the same address as the bill?

    I will receive two more monthly statements for services before I receive my rebate cheque. This is just plain lousy service on Bell’s part.

    The good news for Bell is both CSRs I spoke with were helpful and knowledgeable. They were very apologetic. This is not usually the norm. Things are looking up.

    I am so disappointed. There is no logical explanation for this error.

  4. JB

    Apr 3 2011

    Not only did I get the Bell rebate cheque in the mail, but I got someone else’s in the same envelope two streets over.

    I cashed mine and delivered theirs.

  5. AB

    Apr 3 2011

    I have a complaint with Bell’s dial-up service. As yet, no Satellite or Wireless provider can promise me any kind of Internet service for my business.

    I live just 3 blocks north of Oshawa, Ont. Bell can’t even guarantee service with their Turbo hub or portable stick Internet. So I rely on Bell’s dial-up service.

    I contacted Bell’s technical department to ask about what kind of speed I should be expecting. They said anything up to 56kbps with my monthly pay of $30.95.

    I asked to be put through to their billing department, as I only get half of the speed this technician said I should be receiving.

    “Why am I paying the full rate for dial-up and only receiving half the service?” I asked Rebecca in billing. She said she understood my issue and would credit my account for a 2 month period.

    When I asked her the same question again, her reply was that Bell was aware of the problem. She gets many calls of this nature and Bell is looking into it.

    I’ve had dial up since 1997, with no change to my service, except for an increase in my rate.

    I have emailed Bell Canada, completed their satisfaction surveys and asked if they were upgrading their lines or letting rural areas deteriorate.

    Please advise if there is any other avenue I can explore in getting this “Goliath” company to listen to “David”.

  6. RC

    Apr 3 2011

    Ellen: I applaud you for the article in today’s Toronto Star about the issues Mr. Brooker faced with Bell. You said, “I could have chosen dozens of such stories to illustrate my point.”

    I am one of the Brooker-type customers who managed to get out relatively unscathed recently. However, I spent almost 16 hours on the phone with dozens of people to finally gain a complete end to the Bell service.

    The personnel disconnect internally in Bell is beyond belief.

    What upset me more was that I was tricked into dropping Cogeco in favour of Bell on the strength of receiving a call from a Bell employee, who promised me exactly the same services that I had with Cogeco for a remarkable price of $80.79 per month without a 6 month or one-year limit.

    I was paying $193 with Cogeco, so it seemed like a no brainer. What is important to note is that the person who called me was NOT from Bell, but from a company contracted by Bell called Global GNS.

    The Bell people I spoke to during my ordeal knew nothing of this company and had no idea how this company could promise me what it did.

    I constantly said, “Let’s go back to my initial call where, on record, I repeated that you will give me exactly what I have with Cogeco for over $100 less per month and they agreed.”

    In the end, not one Bell employee could find the caller (I was told by one of the “supervisors” that he’d given me a false Bell employee name/number, John Anderson 53Q60JA) or the recorded call.

    I was left to battle Bell on my own. And, as Mr. Brooker found out, there are no contact numbers or people associated with these numbers to speak with at Bell.

    I want to thank you for doing the article. I only wish more could be done and a wider call for those people who have been burned by Bell could be communicated to the CRTC.

  7. LH

    Apr 3 2011

    Bell – I love your article about their incompetence. But sometimes, though not always, their incompetence can come quite handy.

    Back in January, I called to cancel my high speed Internet service with my promotional discount expiring in February.

    Generally, when you call Bell or Rogers to cancel your service, they automatically send you to their loyalty department in a last ditch effort to keep your business.

    This time, Bell didn’t transfer me to loyalty and agreed to cancel my service right away. Hmmmm…. strange. But as you’ll see in a few moments, it was a mistake that would cost them big.

    I figured that since I was moving my TV services to Rogers, I could benefit from additional discounts by moving the Internet there as well.

    I contacted Rogers shortly afterward to see what promotional Internet packages they had and, boy, was I disappointed.

    All they offered was two months free and afterward it’s the regular price if I agree to a one-year commitment. I said no thanks, too expensive.

    Two weeks go by and I get a phone call from Bell’s loyalty department, asking me why I canceled my Internet service.

    I simply told them Rogers agreed to match Bell’s promotional price (to within a few bucks) for an even better package than what I had with Bell and they also gave me two months free to try the service.

    If you’ve ever dealt with Bell’s marketing people, you know they always try to use the well-known stigmas concerning the technology of their competitors.

    For example, Bell tells people that its ADSL line is dedicated whereas Rogers’ cable Internet is shared among users. The truth is both cable and ADSL are shared, but just in a different way.

    I always get a laugh when I hear Bell’s agents rambling about having an advantage in this area.

    The rep agrees to not only extend my old promotion, but also give me a $50 credit on my account.

    I told him that’s not enough, as Rogers’ two free months added to over $80 in savings.

    He put me on hold and spoke to his supervisor. They agreed to increase the credit to $80. I said ok and they set up the new contract for one year.

    They applied the credits right away to it my balance in a credit position. This way, the savings would automatically migrate and I won’t pay the full price once my contract ends in two weeks.

    Fast forward one month. I get the bill and I see that my Internet package is $50.90 when it’s supposed to be $30.90.

    I logged onto Bell’s website and under the contract details, I saw that Bell never put the new contract into effect.

    But this time, I decided to play my hand again and pretend to be dumb. I called to *cancel* my services under the
    reason that my promotion pricing simply expired and I’m now taking my business to Rogers, especially since they’re offering me two free months.

    This time, they moved me to the loyalty department where once again I tell them about Rogers’ terrific offer in light of the fact that I just signed up for their TV services.

    Bell’s rep checked my account and confirmed that my promotional discount expired in February. I played
    dumb by asking him: “Don’t these plans renew automatically?”.

    He said no, but even if it expired, they’ll gladly match what Rogers offered me.

    The end result: My promotional discount will continue and I got *another* 2 months free.

    As much as I despise Bell, their offer is much more flexible.

    The truth is I called Rogers just before I called Bell and the best Rogers were prepared to do is 3 months of Internet service at half price with a *two* years commitment.

    The package with Rogers would be over $50 per month, tax included, whereas with Bell I’m paying $38 and this
    takes into account a $3 price increase coming in May. The package specs are almost the same.

    With Bell, I got my promotional discount plus two months free (it’s four months free actually) and the commitment is only for one year.

    So as you can see, sometimes Bell’s incompetence does pay dividends. Haha! Good riddance!

  8. JH

    Apr 3 2011

    I have Bell TV, Bell Internet, Bell wireless and Bell home phone without the long distance package. And as a result, I receive $15 per month in bundle discounts.

    Recently I was contacted by Bell and upgraded on my modem to one that was four times faster, which also doubled as a wireless router. Actually I pay $2 less per month now.

    I was having some connection issues and Bell contacted me stating they had noticed a problem and arranged to send a repair tech to my house on a Sunday between 0800-1200. He actually arrived at 0820 and fixed the issue to my satisfaction.

    When I called the following week to cancel a service (Setanta Sports), they did so and then looked at my account and gave me a $10 per month discount for a year.

    I know that, in the scheme of things, my recent good dealings with Bell are probably outweighed by negative issues reported by other customers. But I’d like to point out that I am reasonably happy with Bell at the moment.

  9. Long-time Bell employee

    Apr 3 2011

    Bell was once a good company. A good place to work, but also a good service provider.

    Now, there wasn’t much to compare us to of course, and yes, good service was what Bell said it was! LOL.

    But quality of work and delivering a good service reliably and on time was an imperative. I know, I was there, and took pride in this objective. But those times are over.

    A big question is why…

    Competition of course, which has pros and cons. Myself, I welcomed it, and believe that in the final analysis, this is the way things must be. (From a personal perspective, it provided an alternative employer, should that need have arisen.)

    As a business student, I understood, and agreed with, the basic tenets of the efficiency of competition. The results are obvious and extensive.

    But competition also changes the focus of a company and diverts resources. And worst of all, reduces what a company has to offer to a commodity.

    The broken and misleading promises alluded to in your column bear me out.

    But the REAL problem at Bell, and with this you may agree, is the culture. I can tell you it’s not good, and this is on so many levels. In fact, it’s more poisonous than you can imagine (think Canada Post).

    As is typical with many employees, I complain about the management/labour relationship, but I believe this is the core of the problem.

    Management is focused on numbers. And not quality numbers, but some ethereal productivity numbers which, in the highly confrontational management/union atmosphere at Bell, are easily maneuvered around and defeated.

    This, of course, is what leads to the poor quality and bad customer service. If efficiency, however interpreted, is your focus, then it’s likely that all other imperatives fall away.

    It’s almost amusing to encounter the frustration of the lower level managers at not being able to reconcile the disparity between one set of numbers (productivity), and the other (quality).

    Earlier, I suggested you think Canada Post. There’s a premium placed upon confrontation with, and submission of, the unionized work force.

    THIS is the heart of Bell culture. Don’t underestimate management’s hatred of, and preoccupation with, their unionized workforce.

    The reason I write all this is that I DO care. From a personal perspective, providing a service that people want and appreciate, or solving a problem, provides me with a great deal of personal pride and satisfaction.

    It’s the only reason I can go on. My pride in a job well done is what drives me.

    But that’s not the focus of Bell. I’m not sure what it is, but my many many years of service tell me that pride in a job well done is not their mandate. Such a shame.

  10. PC

    Apr 3 2011

    I was a Bell customer for decades, but every year I had to spend about 2 or 3 hours and numerous phone calls, trying to help Bell charge me the correct amount for services.

    Several years ago, I wrote to Bell’s 2 senior VP’s stating my ongoing frustration with Bell and threatening to switch to Rogers, unless I received a response.

    I had always been rather anti-Rogers, because of my personal dislike for Ted and his wife. After no response from Bell, I switched to Rogers and couldn’t be happier.

    My internet speed went through the comparative roof. I can get quick & helpful support and the general staff attitude at Rogers seems much more friendly and helpful.

    In the several years since I’ve switched, I’ve received 29 separate mailings plus numerous phone calls from Bell.

    I stopped the constant calling by going on the “no-call” list and threatening the callers. The mailings continue.

    I’ve received pens and pads with my name on them and constant requests to sign up.

    Now, I’m no business genius, but if your business plan is to ignore your customers until they leave and then pour money and effort into trying to get them back, whoever wrote your business plan has his or her head firmly encased in their fundament.

    I would still be a compliant Bell customer receiving shoddy to no service and dreadful download speed if they hadn’t, in effect, driven me away. For that, I’m extremely thankful.

  11. MO

    Apr 5 2011

    In response to JDH, whose cheque is still in the mail.

    Last fall, when Bell sent out the intial letter explaining that the CRTC was forcing them to give us a rebate, (but hoping to entice us with a discount on some special feature in exchange for the funds that they owed us), we noticed that Bell had the correct address, but the wrong account-holder — the letter was for someone we had never heard of before.

    As we are only the second couple to occupy this house, and we’ve been here over 20 years, I was truly concerned that someone had succeeded in taking over our account, and possibly our identity as well.

    A quick trip to city hall to do a land title search (yes, I’m that paranoid) helped to allay my fears, as I realized that it was just another example of Bell’s incompetence.

  12. Vesna

    Apr 6 2011

    I’m not happy with Bell either. I had spoke to one of the CSRs there to let him know that their answering service isn’t working properly and he ignored me at first.

    I repeated what I said by telling him that he needed to know this. Generally his tone during that conversation was uncaring.

    Why is he working there?

  13. Dan Brown

    Apr 15 2011

    Vaynerchuk’s the man – all of us individuals can take a note out of his page on how to effectively utilize social media.

    I definitely agree the barriers are much lower these days in getting what you want as a consumer. That being said, many people are just content on sitting back and complaining to their friends about businesses rather than going straight to the source. Thanks for the insight!

  14. Dan Brown

    Apr 15 2011

    I like to use a term from the movie/TV business called “Pre-Pro” or pre-production. It’s all about planning and how to overcome challenges, and correcting yourself when things go wrong.

    A little bit of Pre-Pro goes a long way!

  15. Caelan

    Apr 15 2011

    Until this country allows more competition, consumers are going to be stuck with likes of wretched companies like Bell and Rogers.

    I just tried to pay my Rogers bill online. I have been with them for 13 months, and I have NEVER been able to pay my bill via their website. When you click “Pay Bill Now” and complete the little forum, the payment can never be processed due to technical difficulties. It is hugely annoying. Every month I complain, and I’m told that someone will contact me within 5 business days to discuss this issue, but I have never been called. Am I surprised? No.

    If you pay your bill online via your bank, Rogers will tell you it takes at about seven business days to receive the payment. That’s poppycock. Rogers receives the payment, they just don’t process it.

    Anyway, I will be so glad the day this country moves away from crony capitalism and opens up competition to foreign companies, like Verizon, for example. Then, and only then, will we see an improvement in customer service.

  16. William Russell

    Jun 7 2011

    This is from perspective of a Bell Technical Support employee. I want to show how things are on our end so people can understand and not assume that we have more authority and abilities than we really do.

    At the same time that blame goes to the company and quite a bit of agents for their lack of patience and interest in the job , customers are also to be blamed for their lack of knowledge and research of their purchases and devices.

    At Bell Mobility, we are constantly pressured to perform and exceed stats required. Some of these stats are unrealistic and are not planned well.

    To make matters worse, management usually have no understanding of how customer service works and just want numbers. I mean how can you limit the amount of time to handle a customer’s call when you are supposed to help them?

    It gets really frustrating when people get so demanding and their issues take over 15 minutes to take care of (our handle time varies between 800-1100 seconds and if it goes around or over that hell is raised).

    If you ask for too much help from Tier 2 (on 50% or more of the calls), then its deemed that you have no knowledge and require training.

    Now, they don’t provide any additional training (the initial one is even lacking as they say we should learn from trial and error) and there is nobody else to ask.

    Half the time, the team manager(s) aren’t around and if you ask them a question they get angry and refer you to documentations that are outdated and offer no help.

    It is very frustrating working there with no help or support and yet expected to exceed expectations. Management walk by us looking at us like road kill laughing at us.

    Morale is so low and everything they offer to employees has a catch to it. E.g., eating and drinking at your desk, you can do it between calls, but there is no mute button, so in case a call comes in they don’t hear you eating or drinking , so you can’t really eat or drink at your desk except on breaks and lunches.

    Many meetings and surveys get cancelled because of “business needs” on the phone and it’s busy … well why is it busy? Because their forecasting is really horrible to say the least.

    To make matters worse, Bell Mobility introduced this new queue called specialty to deal with tablets and data devices. Here is the deal: they never informed us that it will have to do with the billing aspect as well until we were in the actual training class and it was too late to pull out.

    The “perks” that they offered us we got them about 8 weeks after they were promised.

    There is no management of the calls coming in to know the amount of agents needed, so you never know if it will be a busy day and you need additional people or if it will be light day and can let people go for the day to decrease cost.

    So now the technical support department is slashed into 3 sections with specialty being the least of them. When people were trained for specialty they were trained for only 2 days on everything including bill where they never dealt with billing before.

    People on calls didn’t know what they’re doing and the billing documentations were outdated and did not apply to them, so they put customers on hold for 10-30 mins sometimes or even disconnect the call.

    The supervisors are not trained on these information so you can’t ask them about anything.

    Bell has deceived its own employees too just like they did with their customers. No wonder morale is low and they constantly have to spend $ on PR and loyalty efforts.

    To make matters worse, the specialty agents don’t get any extra pay even though they deal with troubleshooting for cellular devices (technical), data devices (technical and billing) and tablets (technical and billing) while not receiving any extra pay.

    We get paid the same as the others in the Smart phone or voice Queue who deal with only cellular devices (technical) and maybe data devices (technical – most of them end up transferring the call to specialty anyways cold transfer).

    Now to our dear Bell customers. First, know what you’re getting into. Don’t just take the word of the agent or sales rep. Read about it on the internet as well on the Bell website and find out from multiple sources.

    Understand everything, including billing process and the technical information on the device you’re receiving. Learn about it, find out what others said about it before getting it.

    If you encounter a problem with your device, do basic troubleshooting from the user guide or from the internet by going to google. Don’t expect the agents to know all about your phone. We don’t have them in front of us and we look at the guide too (unless we dealt with the phone personally or have a simulator for it).

    Sometimes people call to ask such stupid questions like how to do something. Go look it up for goodness sake.

    I find that Canadian and North American customers are generally less knowledgeable, less aware, and less intelligent when it comes to their cellular services than the rest of the world. I traveled to many countries and so I seen and compared this.

    True that some agents may lie or not give proper information due to the lack of training they were provided in the first place, but at the same time you customers owe it to yourself to search and find out first before crying on the phone to the point we’re annoyed enough to route you elsewhere.

    At the end, we’re both very frustrated (employees and customers). The only employees that are not frustrated are usually pets of management and they get what they want and have good shifts that don’t change and have the weekend off.

    A lot of agents’ hours changed constantly so you can’t plan your life and the days off are horrible (non-weekend) so it adds more to the frustration. Bell employees are not being treated well to the point they’re giving away their shifts to work less to get away. And Bell customers are frustrated because of the poor service they receive as a result of the low morale and corporate culture of the company.

    We both should blame the management for not understanding how things are really working for customer facing agents.

    If anyone wants more information or advice contact me at arabianknight4ever@yahoo.ca

  17. William Russell

    Jun 7 2011

    A blog has been created to complain about Bell Mobility services and learn how it works behind the scenes. Feel free to read and comment.

  18. William Russell

    Jun 8 2011

    By the way, according to internal sources, Bell is no longer hiring Technical Support or Client Care within Canada (not official), as it will all be overseas in the Philippines, India and other countries from now on.

    This will start decreasing the jobs in Canada, especially Atlantic region to start with, and eventually people may be given the option to become billing agents or be laid off.

    However, since there are many agents at the current time, there may be layoffs.

    For customers, this means you can expect more outsourcing, language barriers and communication with agents who don’t know Canadians or any place in Canada.

  19. Effie

    Jul 14 2011

    My BELL story starts approximately 4 years ago!

    We had satellite, landline and internet service with BELL.

    Landline and internet worked fine but satellite was buggy almost from the start – it wasn’t just a rainy night or a windy day; almost daily, it would take 2 HOURS to get any channels working, sometimes it would cut channels off while we were watching.

    We’d call almost weekly; someone would apologize and offer us free channels – which wouldn’t always work – we got refunds for part of our bills, we got technicians to come out at least 3 ti,es.

    One technician said we should leave the terminal on (the problem was we were shutting it off); the other said we need to turn the terminal off (the problem was we left it on); take out the card, put back the card, replace the card…month after month after month.

    We finally got fed up and switched the TV service to ROGERS in the summer of 2008! We were told we had a 2 year commitment, so we had to pay a cancellation fee!

    We wrote to the Executive team and told them our tale. After repeated calls and emails, they said the account was at $0.

    So, we think this is done with and we continue to have our landline and internet service with BELL that we’ve been paying dilligently.

    Fast forward to May 2011. We get a call from a collection agency. They won’t say what it’s for. We tell them we don’t have any outstanding debts. They must have the wrong person.

    This week, on Monday, we got a marketing letter from BELL offering us a deal on satellite service. As with many of these offers, we have received in the past, it went into the recycling.

    Tuesday of this week, we get a letter saying that if we don’t pay $187 by July 11th, our landline and internet service will be cut off!

    We call BELL. They transfer us to 4 different people and finally tell us this is the leftover amount from the satellite service in 2008.

    We finally get through to what I think the lady called the satellite executive team. We explain the story to her and say we got an email saying the balance is $0. She apologized and said she’d look into it.

    Today, our phone service has been cut off! I’m guessing internet will follow shortly.

    We tried calling BELL and all they’ll tell us now is this is with the agency and there’s nothing they can do!

    Three years later, after being told the issue was closed, and after being told 2 days ago someone would look into it, the services we have been paying for without issue are cut off.

    Great service, BELL!!!

    I guess all of the other services will now go to ROGERS to join the cable service.

  20. Effie

    Jul 14 2011

    Forgot to add…guess I’m still pretty upset over the whole thing.

    When we cancelled the satellite service, we were told we were 14 months into a 2 year commitment. Since we “didn’t honour our commitment,” we had to pay a $200 fee.

    We asked for proof of the 2-year contract. We never received any. We were told this would have been over the phone, so no written contract.

    We said, pull the recording. If we agreed to a 2-year term, then we’ll talk about paying the cancellation fee, even though BELL never honoured its commitment to providing a service.

    To date, we have never received anything to prove we had agreed to a 2-year term.

    I’m sure at some point in the future – maybe 3 years from now – we’ll get a letter out of the blue telling us we owe them $ for the internet and landline service they cut off cause we “didn’t honour our commitment”.

  21. Sarah

    Nov 9 2011

    It is true that businesses do not realize that an investment in customer service is way, way more important than cost cutting or maximizing profits. I agree with you that social media is slowly bringing this to businesses attention.

    I’ll give you an example that took place in Egypt. A leading international telecom company was broadcasting an advertisement that some found offensive to the local history and culture.

    The youtube comments people left on the advertisement on youtube were simply deleted, until a customer started a campaign on facebook of switching to the competitive telecom company and people started joining in. Only then did the company stop the advertisement and issue a formal apology.