C+ For Canadian Customer Service

23 Feb

After spending a couple days in Boston, and from past trips across the border, I’ve noticed a distinct difference in customer service, and this bothers me.

Of course there are some retail outlets in Canada that have exceptional service but not many. In the U.S. it seems to be a norm.

In a study by the Manton Group, Canadian companies were rated in terms of customer service, and scored on average around 40%. Not so great. For a people stereotypically known for being friendly and polite, this doesn’t reflect well on our image.

If we’re speaking anecdotally, I went to a retail store in Boston, and tried on a pair of pants. I happened to say that they were a tad bit wrinkly and hence could not see if they fit well. As soon as this was said, a sales associate jumps up and offers to steam them for me. Keep in mind too that this pair of pants was on the sale rack so commission was not too high on the item. And what if I didn’t buy them? They risked no sales to steam my pants. Even if they were obligated by the rules and regulations of said clothing store, it’s still more than I’ve experienced in Toronto.

Shopping in Toronto, I’ve been in and out of stores without a simple greeting from store staff. Most are too busy trying to make their daily quota in sales that they don’t bother to go above and beyond to retain customers. Though not beneficial initially, customer retention is what increases sales in the long run. What should be awarded is sales associates who foster repeat customers.

I’m important, damnit!

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