Not a fan of “templates”…nor GLOBE.

Templates… I realize now that I never really use templates for word processing and text messaging. There’s tons of templates for resumes, business letters, envelopes, and such. Almost anything we do now has a “short cut” option. It does make sense in a world that is moving too fast. We just don’t have time to think about the most basic of things. I get it that it’s for convenience. It’s so that we can devote our time to other more challenging matters.

Even bloggers can be victims to the convenience of re-blogging. There’s a button on my browser that I can click to quickly post the link to an article I find worthy of sharing with my readers. I only use it to save the links though, so I can add them to my articles later.

On the 7th of January, more than ever, I really grasped the consequence of over-dependency and abuse of templates. Apparently, it can freeze brain cells.

Hubby and I went to our phone carrier’s business center that day to upgrade our phones to iPhone 4s. The woman behind the counter had her hands gripped on a bunch of papers the whole time she talked to us and she kept looking down at it while talking to us. I think she was holding the “script” or “template”. There’s nothing wrong with having a set of written guidelines but it can go so wrong when the person that’s being guided doesn’t have the ability to multi-task or follow a these simple steps.

1. LISTEN TO THE INQUIRY

2. PROCESS INFORMATION

3. CHECK AGAINST GUIDELINES/SCRIPT/TEMPLATE

4. RESPOND TO THE INQUIRY only after doing 2 & 3.

I am no expert in this matter but it’s just plain COMMON SENSE. Nobody has to be an expert to know that one should listen first, use some brain matter to understand what was heard, and then respond. This should never be complicated into a 25-step task. In fact, it should be just 3 steps: listen, process, respond. Today, though, I witnessed just 2 steps! Listen and respond.

When we approached the counter, the first words out of my mouth included “iPhone 4S”. Someone with the simplest mind would get it that we were there for that specific phone right?

WRONG.

Please, tell me how I could have avoided storming out of the GLOBE HUB at The Podium after this conversation:

Me:   Does the existing postpaid plan have any rebates or rewards we can apply to the purchase of two units of iPhone 4s?
Globe Customer Service Agent: yes. You can avail of Blackberry___ at cash out of ___ or get the Nokia___ free.
Me:   You didn’t understand my question. My question was (repeated above question).
Globe Customer Service Agent:  (repeated irrelevant Blackberry and Nokia offer)
Me:   Again, my question was (repeated question with emphasis on iPhone 4s)
Globe Customer Service Agent:  You may avail of the iPhone 4S 16GB P1799 plan with cash out of P4800.
Me:   THAT’S NOT A REWARD. THAT’S THE ADVERTISED PROMO FOR EVERYONE.
Globe Customer Service Agent:  We are out of stock of iPhone 4s 16GB. We only have 64GB.
Me:   (no words… glaring, dagger eyes)… rolled my eyes, whipped my hair, stomped my way out, leaving hubby to deal with the inept.

She was obviously just hearing key words from my question, completely ignoring what was most important! And then, without any thought process, just reads out loud what’s printed on those sheets of paper in front of her.

I am betting that the iPhone 4S’s SIRI can do a better job. Maybe they should replace those human robots with real robots who actually process information. While I’m at it, let me just rant about how a total waste of time it is to call GLOBE’s hotline, 730-1000.

A friendly tip to those who will still insist on calling the hotline:

1. Make sure your phone is fully charged, or plugged in before making the call. A huge chunk of time will be wasted just trying to listen every option being enumerated.

2. Have a refreshing drink beside you, and whatever helps calm you down.

3. Be prepared to punch over a dozen numbers just to find your way through a maze of options.

4. Don’t expect to actually get to talk to an agent. If there is one, you’ll never get to that point. Well, if you can spare 15-30 minutes with the speaker phone on… try.

It’s not just me. I know some of you will be thinking… she must be that kind of customer.. Difficult. Well, maybe I’m just not as patient and diplomatic as my hubby who usually gets left behind at those counters after I walk out from exasperation. He somehow uses those moments as opportunities to educate people. I, on the other hand, am idealistic. Customer service means customer service. I don’t have any responsibility to educate these people. They should educate themselves. How else will they get promoted?! Their employer, the company, should carry that burden! Not me. I will pay for the phone service. I don’t see them ever paying me for training idiots.

UPDATE after 9 days:

Having been informed by a friend that there are iPhone 4S units available in another Globe Business Center, I endured a call to Globe’s hotline. After waiting for maybe 20 minutes, a living, breathing being finally picked up my call. My call was transferred to another department as the first agent couldn’t help me. With every ounce of patience I could muster, I relayed my concerns to the sales agent. Out of that conversation, I got a reference number. It’s supposed to mean something when another person from Globe calls me within 48 hours.

PROBLEM STILL NOT SOLVED. This last agent at least sounded like she was actually thinking and trying to offer solutions. However, the recommendation is still absurd by my standards.

What does Globe want me to do? Go to the Podium, cancel my existing application and then go to the other business center and start a new application. The solution is to put the burden on me, the paying customer, to go branch-hopping and keep on waiting like a sitting duck for that phone call within 48 hours that I seriously doubt will ever come! And if it does, I no longer have any optimism left that my problem will be resolved.

Congratulations, Globe! You have successfully killed all my enthusiasm for the iPhone 4S.

Hello, Apple! Why do you let companies like this represent you?

Globe killed the iPhone 4S experience for me. Wondering if it will be any different with SMART. I should perhaps look into that.

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