I just had a horrible user experience.
I feel just a little ashamed of myself, but only a little, and only towards the young lady I just spoke to on the phone. It was not her fault that she received lousy training. But she caught the brunt of making me a very unhappy camper. I hope I did not hurt her feelings, but I sort of let her have it with both barrels. No yelling or cursing, mind you. I have not done that since I was a kid. But she knew I was not happy.
It was a bait-and-switch call. It used to be only by mail or internet spam. Now it is by phone and it gets around my “do not call” status. Allow me to set it up a bit.
My wife and I have investment accounts with one of the large banks in the area. Both of us are on all accounts or have been given explicit permission to share information, so anyone authorized to ask, could speak to either of us. As I was writing an article on user experience for a major national publication on the subject, the phone rang. I saw the name, so I answered. The young lady asked to speak to my wife about “her account”. I said she was not in, but could I take a message. She said no, but she was just calling about “her account”. So I asked if it was the investment group and called them by name. She said that it was not those accounts, just about “her account”. That’s when it hit me.
I asked her if she was in a local bank branch. She said “Yes”. I asked her if this was a solicitation call. She said no, this was just a courtesy call about my wife’s account. That is when I went off just a bit. This was a bait-and-switch solicitation call. My wife has no accounts with this bank, but this young lady was trying to sell her one. It was a sales call. Have you recently received any mail “about your account” only to find out that it is an offer to open a new account with someone. Well, it has not gone from envelopes and email to phone calls. Perhaps this is old news to you, but this is the first one I have gotten.
What this bank has done, instead of creating a new customer, has created an angry person. I would never open an account with them. There are too many competitors who do not engage in this foolishness.
How could she have done better? All it would have taken was the truth. Ever heard of it? Apparently it is a novel approach to some people. All she had to do was tell me she was with “Whatever Bank” and that she would like to talk to me about the possibility of opening an account with them. I would likely have said “no thank you” and she could have gone on to the next person on her list. Or I might have been someone who was contemplating a change. But that is not what she did.
Now, not only will I not open an account with “Whatever Bank” but I will make sure some of my friends know what happened to me.
User experience is a big deal. Take time to get it right the first time.