Back in January our Dyson vacuum cleaner packed up and we were more than happy to replace it with another one. It’s a brand I really believe in, so much so that I wrote a blog about it called ‘Hoovering and Storytelling‘.
Three weeks ago we had a problem with our relatively new Dyson so we rang the customer service number and after a very straight forward, quibble free process the offending part would be replaced and delivered to us. The promise was that we would have it within ‘10 working days‘.
To be honest I thought 10 working days was quite a long time for a part they said was in stock but at least they were going to replace it and in the meantime we would manage.
Three weeks passed and there was no sign of our part so we called the Dyson customer service number. They had a record of our transaction and confirmed that due to a system glitch the part had not been dispatched. The operative was very polite, very apologetic but explained that unfortunately we were back at the beginning of the process again and a replacement part would take up to 10 working days to get to us.
It was time to take a stand and explain that this really wasn’t good enough.
Without getting argumentative we asked the operative if there was some way of expediting the delivery of our part. He told us he needed to check with his supervisor so he put us on hold briefly. After about two minutes he came back to us and confirmed that while the circumstances were unfortunate there was “nothing they could do“.
I detest those words because quite simply there is always something that can be done. ‘There is nothing I can do‘ is a choice about what you are prepared to do, a choice about what is acceptable.
This was the system.
We left him know that we weren’t happy and that surely there is ‘always something that can be done‘? Nope ..
We had exhausted the ‘official channel‘ so we reluctantly reverted to twitter to vocalise our disappointment with the Dyson brand.
Immediately the Dyson social media team reacted and wanted to know what happened. Without too much fuss they confirmed that what happened wasn’t good enough, that it wasn’t consistent with the Dyson culture so they would investigate our situation immediately and check with the customer service team.
They thanked us for highlighting a ‘flaw‘ in their customer service procedures, which they would take on board as a learning. Instead of waiting 10 days for a replacement part a new, better machine would be delivered to us in three working days.
With all of our businesses we have to make decisions on a regular basis about how we handle complaints. What do we do, how quick do we respond, what is fair – what do we decide is acceptable?
Things will inevitably go wrong from time to time and while we all hate complaints we need to make a decision about how we deal with them. A complaint is a great way to show the real ethos of your business and instead of saying ‘there is nothing I can do‘ we need to embrace the issue, do our very best and learn from it.
If you were cynical you might decide that Dyson reacted because the issue was highlighted on a public social media platform but I do believe they were genuine and they rose to the Customer Service Challenge. Instead of being a negative for the brand it is a positive. My faith is restored!
Well done Dyson ..