Our thanks this month to guest blogger, Kathy Blumenstock. Kathy currently writes Animal Planet’s “The Mole” blog http://blogs.discovery.com/the_mole. A career journalist, she has been a reporter and writer for The Washington Post, Sports Illustrated, USA Today, NBC News and Entertainment Tonight. Kathy also contributes feature stories to Knitchmagazine.com and Knit ‘N Style magazine.
When a computer is involved, most of us non-tech types cringe. I’m no different: replacing my long-serving ibook, I braced for the worst, fully expecting to fumble through new programs and finding the shortcuts and pathways to get me back on track. I was pleasantly surprised—okay, speechlessly shocked—when my worst fears were cushioned by understanding, helpful customer service professionals.
They talked me through setting up the laptop, even when I couldn’t figure out which purple cord belonged with which yellow port. With their guidance, the laptop morphed into an autopilot dream. Of course, all was going too smoothly. That’s why the new modem decided to rebel. State-of-the-art, speedy and sleek, it’s designed to plug into multiple computers and phone lines. The compact black box blinked on, grew hot to the touch, then quit. “Shouldn’t happen,” said the cheerful rep on the line. “I’m shipping you a replacement overnight.”
Okay, the new modem appeared a day later. And didn’t respond at all. Another replacement was sent out, while I wondered if I’d be the modem junkyard for the free world. When Modem #4 balked, the service rep on the phone gave me her direct line, home and cell phone numbers. “From now on, I’m on this personally, if there is a problem, don’t go through the main number,” she said. “I’ll come out there in person if I have to.”
She didn’t: Modem #5 was the magic number, linking me to the cyberworld with green lights blinking. I was so glad it worked, and my personal service rep still emails me once a month to make sure I’m still happy with the modem; she has offered to send a backup just to keep on hand. “We want this to be a customer success story,” she says. For me, it’s been one all along.
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