"I've been on hold for 45 minutes! Don't you think that's ridiculous! 45 minutes! How can that be? How could I be on hold for 45 minutes! Why was I on hold for 45 minutes?", barked the livid customer into my ear. If I did not know any better I could have sworn there was a white froth coming out of the earpiece.
But I had had enough. I had been sitting doing nothing for the last 30 minutes, I had a snack, drank some diet coke, and talked with my coworkers about nothing in particular. The phone had rang off and on, but we would have seen a call hanging out there for that long. The phone system has a bug in it where people get lost in a different kind of call center purgatory if they ring in a certain way.
It was the last hour of the day, and I could not deal with this kind of crap anymore. Finally I said to him, "What, do you think we are sitting around here saying, 'Look, that guy has been on hold for 45 minutes. It's funny when people hold. Hey everybody, let's leave him there another 45 minutes'? I'm sorry you were on hold for so long, but we are having some problems with the phone system. Now would like me to help you now or not?" He settled down, and I took care of his request and he hung up.
This same guy had called earlier in the day and had complained to one of our supervisors that one of the people here talked down to him, when they just asked him questions he did not know the answer to.
Some people just seem to be the perfect genetic combination of ignorance, arrogance, and impatience. Then with that foundation firmly in place in their genetic make up, their mother drops them a couple of times on their head, then assures them that everyone else was placed here to serve them, and yes, all of the planets and all of the solar system, and comets and other heavenly bodies revolve around them and them alone. Thus completing the process of creating and nurturing a perfectly formed, razor sharp, craftsman quality, well designed asshole.
OK.....I feel better now....
Some of you are thinking that I have lost my love of people and am unable to care about people like I used to, that I am becoming a snotty jerk. No, I don't think I'm to that point yet. It's not that I don't care he was on hold for 45 minutes. I just don't like being abused for something I can't fix, by someone who is not smart enough to call back later when he can't get through.
What this kind of customer wants to hear is this: "I'm sorry sir, I didn't realize that it was you on hold and not an ordinary schmuck like all the others. We will call out the elite call center operators that we keep stationed just for emergencies with special clients such as yourself. I promise that you will never hold again for more than 30 seconds, and if it does happen I will personally disembowel myself on the call center floor for the dishonor I have brought to my noble profession."
Abuse will never get you what you want with anyone, and if it does, it is at the pain and expense of the person you forced to help you. Besides that, now and then you're going to have someone tell you exactly how they feel about you, and your mom won't be there to disagree with them.
OK...I know I went a little overboard....I'm going to go lie down for a while now....