BL: My All Time #1 Pet Peeve… Plus…

Mumbai Call Center
BobLee
January22/ 2018

My All Time #1 Pet Peeve is… Plus…N&O cullings

“They say” that you can gauge a person by the level of stuff that upsets him/her.  Rational mature adults don’t get sidetracked by stoopid little stuff. If one allows Life’s mundane frustrations to “get to you” how can you possibly deal with Real Problems. That said…

Am I the ONLY ONE who is perplexed by customer service / tech support on-the-phone whose accents are too thick to be decipherable?

This usually involves individuals from a “dreaded Mumbai call center”.   Whatever collective noun covers India / Pakistan or various Middle Asian countries. My primary (sole) communicating language is English / American… with a touch of “Mayberry”.

I am not Indian/Pakistan-ophobic. I do NOT blame “Hello, my name is Robert” on the other end of the phone connection.  “Robert” has the solution to my problem and is sincerely trying to convey that solution… but cannot do so.

Our only communicating medium is the spoken word and it ain’t happening. There is nothing either of us can do to resolve THAT problem in order to resolve the original problem.

WHY would any company concerned with effective customer service assign individuals to a customer service phone center that “might” have too thick of an accent to communicate with their customer?  WHY?

WHY are calls from Raleigh NC directed to employees unable to communicate with individuals unaccustomed to their thick accents? WHY?

If I was calling to arrange a cruise down The Ganges, I would expect some “issues”.  But I just want to change my Apple ID…

If a Bollywood zillionaire calls for tech-support does he get “Hello, my name is Gomer” in a call center in Muleshoe Arkansas”?  I sure hope so.

I understand that there are huge “call centers” in Mumbai, India that receive 100,000s customer service calls from everywhere in the world 24/7. I’m sure their 10,000s of employees have “all the answers” to customer concerns at their keyboard fingertips.

Would those phone centers hire ME to answers calls from customers in Helsinki or Uzbekistan? I sure hope not.

For the record… every Mumbai-based call center employee is named “Robert”… as in “Hello, my name is Robert. How may I help you?”   No Charlie or Zeke gets hired at a Mumbai call center.

Whenever I get “Robert” I know this is NOT going to end well. We are both playing solitaire with decks of 51.

Mumbai Call Center

One way around this universal issue is using “e-chat” which is texting back/forth without dealing with accents on either end. I’ve gotten where I can guess nationalities by sentence structure. That makes for stilted communication but I do get an answer to my problem. Which is all I ever wanted.

…. “Thank you for calling Mr. BobLee. Please hit Control – Alt- Delete Mr BobLee. …. I am so sorry Mr BobLee that that did not work … Mr BobLee have you tried rebooting your computer Mr BobLee? …. Very good Mr BobLee. I am so glad we could help you today Mr BobLee. Is there anything else, Mr BobLee, that we can do to help you today? Have a nice day, Mr BobLee…”

Resolving ANY issue requires using the customer’s name a minimum of twelve times. “Robert” get bonus points every time after twelve?

I’m not angry with “Robert”. Some middle manager in Silicon Valley with an MBA from Cal Tech calculated that 10,000 “Roberts” with accents so thick Ghandi could not understand them will save his/her company $.03/call.

The next time I call one of these things I’m going to say “my name is Robert” and see what their “Robert” says.

#

Duke just signed another “Greatest Since LeBron” semi-literate 17 y/o.  Roy really wanted this guy too until Duke got him at which point UNC board monkeys all declared “Roy really did NOT want him after all…”. How many Duke “one/dones” is that that “Roy really didn’t want”. I stopped counting at 28.

Don’t even bother to learn this one’s name. ANOTHER “one semester and adios” who “chose Duke because of The Brotherhood”… whatever the Hell that means. Somewhere Hack Tyson and Steve Vacendak are weeping.

##

More “culling the herd” down at The N&O. My longtime buddy John Drescher, Executive EditorDrescher for the past 10-12 years, has been reassigned as some “gobblygook something or other”… I BETCHA they couldn’t “cull” John because of his contract so they “reassigned” him, hoping he will just go away.  Just a guess….

John Drescher and Bubba Cunningham are both “a lot better” than the scummy, no-count organizations that employ them.  A WHOLE LOT better…

McClatchy hired “some woman” to replace John at, guessing again, a LOT less than they were paying John. With “shes” as both Publisher and Executive Editor, McClatchy is saving about $500,000 in executive payroll. So much for “gender equity” hypocrisy at The N&O.

Has anyone checked how many AfAms are employed at The N&O these days since they “culled” Sportin’ Life Barry a few months ago? You can count’em on one hand… or less. So much for “racial equity” at The N&O.

Milton

Further “culling” has Jim Jenkins finally retiring (wink, wink) from the N&O after 35 years of writing the same snarky editorial each week for ever how many weeks there are in 35 years. Jenkins always reminded me of “Milton” in Office Space. That schlub with “the stapler” who they couldn’t fire because he kept hiding from the firing guy.

Will Rob “RielleWho” Christensen survive another six months?

The N&O will eventually cull down to two “cheap white women” and thirteen interns.

My only other N&O friend, besides John Drescher – Dan Kane – just did an OMG expose of Wendell Murphy’s “upscale golf community” near Wallace NC. Per Dan, there are political shenanigans involving $800,000 in state taxpayer funds helping Wendell fix a sewage issue.

I reminded Dan that he might score a few points with TruBlues since Wendell is NC State’s #1 Fat Cat. … but probably not.

##

It occurred to me that my BobLee Buddies list includes, among others…

Dan Kane… Bubba “The RealAD” Cunningham… Leo Hart… The Fabulous Comparato Twins… Don McCauley… John Drescher… THEBobKennel… “JudgeBob” Orr… “PrinceAlbert” Long… Jon “The Butcher’s Lawyer” Sasser… Art Chansky… Mary “The Whistleblower” Willingham… Holden Thorp and Wade Hargrove.

That is one VERY eclectic gaggle of fine, albeit infamous, folks. I proudly stand beside one and all.

#

More of BobLee -Link

AP LOGO– Link

Blondie  – LINK

BLONDIE REALLY has a MUST-READ …. Check It Out!

 

NCNV

BobLee

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DownEast RM
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DownEast RM

I reluctantly called Apple Support yesterday after all else failed and came away pleasantly surprised. The wait was only about 2 minutes and the very pleasant and helpful support lady had a familiar accent. During one of the times when I was waiting for the system to reboot I asked her where she was located and she was in Charlotte NC. Kudos to Apple.

NCSU68Grad
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NCSU68Grad

Had my GS call Apple about the dying battery on his iPhone 6, which was a hand me down from his mom. Great learning experience. My daughter had taken the phone to the Apple Store and wanted to get the $30 new battery. Lots of runaround. Must file case. Must run special diagnostics app. Tech support will do remote link to determine if the battery is weaker due to the IOS issue….blah blah Got tired of him grabbing a charger every few hours. Got him to googling. IOS now has a built in diagnostics. Message was….your battery sucks. Then found… Read more »

Former96Heel
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Former96Heel

I truly wish more call centers were in the US, but unfortunately, wherever in America you find the large density of lower-skill service workers one needs to man the massive call center model, you also have a serious amount of folks who are neither capable of being employed, have the basic English skills to set themselves apart from an ESL voice across the world, nor the basic customer service aptitude to handle such a job. It is impossible to help someone when your whole life revolves around anger that someone else should be helping you. . There’s a reason your… Read more »

PTH
Guest

They are the same guys that call me to inform me that a lawsuit is being filed against me for tax evasion and fraud, or they can help me with my student loans. (None ever ) or I have won a fabulous trip to timbuktoo. Since I am retired with time on my hands I occasionally play along until they realize I am pulling their chain. Sometimes I ask if they have Prince Albert in a can!

Doug
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Doug

True story. When I lived broad we became best friends with a career State Department employee who worked in the US Embassy where we lived.As he approached retirement age – 5 or 6 years ago – River Bend mailed information to a bunch of “Yankees” including my friend. He asked me about it and about Wallace. Long story short, I told him he was crazy to even consider that place or an investment there. I might have used the term S**thole to describe the area. The friend did retire last year and moved near Holden Beach. Crisis averted. K out-recruiting… Read more »

Doug
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Doug

Dadgummit, I too was in the midst of re-setting my Apple password (on-line, no call center) and messed up a sentence. To recruits K comes across as sophisticated. Although Roy is a fantastic MBB coach, he comes across as a Boss Hog type character.

E Deploribus Unum
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E Deploribus Unum

So does that just leave drunken driver Ned Barnett in the Oh-pinions Dept?

Of course, I mean the “Oh-fishel” “Oh-pinions” Dept, since the whole paper is opinions…

DM Carpenter
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DM Carpenter

Our local Thrice-weekly, Lincoln Times-News (not a bad paper for news in Lincoln County (right next door), decided to put up a paywall on the website. I am sure that they were making a dime or two from folks just looking at the paper online and triggering some ad revenue, but the paywall has people not even going there, so what little ad revenue is going away. On top of that, there is an online ‘newspaper’ (Lincoln Herald) which covers the same basic footprint, plus 1) No paywall on Herald 2) Herald updates/posts new stories regularly weekdays and weekends, as… Read more »

Terry Price
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Terry Price

Try this when you must call cust serv, tell Robert you want to speak to a representative located in the USA. It has worked everytime for me except with Dell.

NCSU68Grad
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NCSU68Grad

Mr. Terry
Thanks for that tip I usually can understand and communicate with the Amazon ESL reps. Not tonight. So I asked him….”Speak slower and more distinctly or transfer me to a US representative” Bingo, Kimberly in Florida.
Cool….

NCSU68Grad
Guest
NCSU68Grad

Call Centers and CSU Personnel I had used Dell Pro Tech Support since 2006 when I retired. Due to some idiotic electro idiosyncracies with my second Dell (usually get 5 years out of them), I switched to Lenovo. Also could not find a Dell laptop for under $4K that had two small, but required features. DID piggyback onto a buddy’s Retired IBM Friends and Family account and saved a bundle. Found out that Lenovo does have a Premium Support. You buy it. With Dell, the Pro Support gets a REAL USoA person in Nashville or Houston or WITHIN the USA…it… Read more »

Bob H
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Bob H

Those mega-companies like amazingBezos and Gatesoft-in-the-head and others save a great deal more than $.03 per call by shuffling the business off to Mumbai (Whatever happened to Calcutta, anyway?). Plus, they really don’t give a rat’s about you as a customer because they know that you have no alternative but to buy their products no matter how much those products might fail to do the job you want done. Remember when Al Capp – as one of Lil Abner’s pals – would say, “Whatever is good for General Bullmoose is good for the USA!” and keep right on producing shinola.… Read more »