Now That’s Customer Service

For a lot of people, fountain pens are a thing of the past, old fashioned and out of date. For many more, they are the preferred writing utensil. And, then there are those who just don’t know because they’ve never had the privilege of writing with a really nice fountain pen.

A few years ago my best friend bought me my first fountain pen as a gift. It was beautiful and love at the first instance of putting pen to paper. There was just one problem . . . if the pen wasn’t used for more than a few hours, the ink would dry up and unless it was put through a complete cleaning process it was not useable. That quickly became more hassle than it was worth.

After checking online and with several regular users of fountain pens, and investing in other fountain pens, it became obvious that the first fountain pen had something wrong with it, because none of the other pens were a problem. Instead, they were a joy to write with, and pretty soon, a fountain pen was just about the only pen that could be found on my desk.

The first fountain pen had very special meaning since it was the first and more importantly a gift from someone very special. I simply put the pen up and sort of forgot about it until one day I opened my pen case and saw it there.

Some 18 months had passed by now, but I decided to call the company and explain the situation to see what would happen.

Surprise, surprise, the customer service person on the other end of the phone was clearly listening to the challenge and offered a brand new pen. Well, being not only shocked and surprised, but now the sentimental side kicked in and I questioned whether or not to take her up on the generous offer.

Finally, after deciding it was silly to keep a nice fountain pen I couldn’t use laying around due to sentimental reasons, I agreed to let them send me a new pen.

No sending the old one back before they would send the new one, no hassle, no fuss, no muss, no nothing. Just a nice, apologetic lady on the other end of the phone who wanted to replace the pen with a new one, totally at the company’s expense. All I had to do was get the new pen, put the old one in the box, attach the label they were sending and call to have the box picked up or drop it off at the local shipping store.

Thrilled doesn’t even begin to describe the feeling of elation!

Unfortunately, the new pen ended up doing the same thing as the original one. So, it’s now sitting on the shelf, looking pretty, but not really functional.

Still shocked at the great customer service I got when I called the first time, I just don’t have the heart to tell them I’m having the same problem with this one. Since the customer service is so good, I do buy other things from this company – just not their fountain pens.

Can you do things so well in your company that your clients will forgive you just because you do other things so well and they love you for those? My bet is you can, and should – after all we all make mistakes at one time or another and somebody is going to get upset with us. Hopefully, we can all have great customer service . . . and outstanding products to match.

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