We’re Sorry for Your Inconvenience

Somedays I hate dealing with this world where online transactions just don’t seem to exist. The left hand just doesn’t seem to be linked at all with the right.

This week I was stressed that I was late to make one of my payments. So I rushed to the office and made the payment. You’d think that making the payment directly at the office would ensure that it was notated to your account. Well, no in this world where I live it wasn’t.

Today, I just before 6pm the utility that I had rushed to make sure was paid (albeit late), stopped working. First, I thought maybe the weather (it was pouring rain at the time)had caused it. Yes, in my world the rain interferes with many services. So, I make “The Call”. The Rep tells me my account is locked for payment. I start to see red, visibly.

Shouting with these people really doesn’t help any situation. I tell her, my account is fully paid as of yesterday and after she asks where and how much was paid I am told she will speak with billing and “will try to follow up” with me. At this point, I’m annoyed. So, I tell her “you will not try, you will follow up” pointless I know, but taking responsibility is not in their make up here. The call of follow-up never comes, so 30 minutes later I am calling the billing department and that after I have emailed proof of payment (a step I never had to do in the U.S., but is a part of my regular routine here). I am then told my service will be restored in 30 minutes.

Throughout this time not one person apologized for their error. Even the email I had sent telling them how upset I was due to this interruption was met with a cursory reply that only said the service was being restored. No apology for my inconvenience.

I am reminded of an episode of Grey’s Anatomy where Baily advises Derek that the Chief often apologizes to patients threatening lawsuits or before that even. An apology is sometimes all they need. Derek then acts on her advice with a patient and it works. Imagine that, an apology is all it takes.

Why are people so fearful of saying those two little words? “I’m sorry or We’re sorry” are words that do not hurt, but they go a long way at healing.