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I’m often surprised by how many companies seem to have policies and procedures in place that pretty much chase customers away. This month I’m sharing one of my own stories of this nature, in the hopes that it will serve as a reminder to you that “customer service” isn’t just about how you treat your customers. It’s about how you treat your prospective customers, too.


Two months after getting married, my husband and I found our dream home. Aside from the fact that the interior hadn’t been updated in over 30 years, the house had everything we were looking for. So we bought it, and the renovation work began as soon as escrow closed.

One of the things that we needed was new window coverings throughout the house. I called two window blind companies to come in and give me estimates.

For one bid, I called a local company that I had never heard that had sent a “welcome to the neighborhood” postcard. For the other I called 3 Day Blinds, a national chain that had done a great job at my husband’s house the year before.

Although I was predisposed to use 3 Day Blinds, I ended up hiring the local company. Why? Let me count the reasons…

  • The schedulers were not truthful. I was told I had an appointment at 5:30 pm on the 5th.
    Shortly after scheduling I received an email saying that the salesperson would arrive somewhere between 4:30 and 6:30. Which is not the same as a 5:30 appointment.

  • The scheduling system went beserk. After emailing back and forth regarding the fact that I would not be available until 5:30, I received a few more automated emails, all saying that the appointment started at 5:30 on the 5th.

  • The sales person didn’t show. When I made the appointment I was told that in case of a last-minute issue I should call the 800 number, and the people there would be able to contact the salesperson. This was another lie, as they had no way to reach this person. However, they were able to inform me that the appointment had inexplicably been moved to the 12th. Needless to say, I said “no thanks.”

What Others Are Saying

"Holy mother of God...this first draft is perfect! Like perfect! It's everything I wanted to say but just couldn't! Thank you thank you thank you Linda!"

Mark McManus
President, DisasterFree