Today Was Not A Good Day

Today was not a good day. I had to fire someone today.

A customer called this afternoon about a shipment that they were expecting last week. It had not yet arrived at their location. Turns out it was a pretty simple problem. The customer specified the wrong address for the shipment and UPS dutifully delivered the package to that address as directed and on time. We explained the problem and promised to contact UPS about the shipment and then call the customer with a resolution.

We’ve all had situations where customers were unhappy for reasons beyond our control. It isn’t something that anyone enjoys, but it happens sometimes. As we always do at EXAIR, we took responsibility for finding a solution even though we didn’t create the problem.

Unfortunately, the customer was rude, obnoxious and profane to both our front line customer service agent and our Customer Service Manager. As luck would have it, both our CFO and I were close by when the call came in and we overheard the entire exchange from our side. Our people were calm and professional even when the customer was not.

After the call, we were able to sort out the details for a replacement shipment that we are sending at no charge. I personally called the customer to let him know that we would ship a replacement order overnight at no charge.

And then I fired the customer.

He refused to apologize for his unprofessional conduct and I had no other choice.

Our people are professionals and they handled the situation correctly.

And they deserved better.

Today was not a good day.

Bryan Peters

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