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article imageOregon business puts the customer first Special

By Carol Forsloff     Nov 11, 2009 in Business
Poor service has been found to be a significant reason for customer dissatisfaction.. Sears Auto Centers have been rated the worst for service recently, and the cell phone industry is rated poor. So where are the good guys?
Recently PR Log published a press release relating the issues about customer service and how Sears customers have been particularly concerned about the Auto Center. The press release discussed the negative response from consumers and how poor quality service has influenced the public perception of Sears as a dependable brand oriented specifically to the needs of the consumer.
In 2005, a research study pointed out that consumers switched cell phone companies chiefly because of poor customer service. The study cited consumer responses in both the United States and the United Kingdom.
Poor service at airports and in the airline industry has also been a consumer complaint. News this April from Reuters pointed out how people have become discouraged with Legacy Airlines and how complaints have led to concerns about what is not being called Jetiquette, or the lack of appropriate customer service in the airline indusry. Some copanies have responded to this by offering training in customer service.
But while people complain about the lack of customer service in some areas, others know how to treat a customer and do it beyond ordinary expectations at times.
Vira Chea at Pony Express, a mailbox service in Portland, Oregon, believes strongly in customer service.
In addition to providing mail service, including mail box and address forwarding services, Vi sells a program called Clear, which allows access to the Internet for a low price without a long-term contract.
I purchased the software for the service from him several days ago and was unable to load it on a new computer without a CD drive and with a new Windows program that I suspected might be interfering with installation from an external drive.
I went back to Pony Express where I bought the device as I had been told to do so if I had a problem.
Chea and his associate and life partner Raquel Figueroa tried to help me personally, and finding the problem remained nevertheless, they called the representative for Clear for the area of Portland where I happen to live. Less than half an hour later, the customer service representative from Clear was at the store, personally downloading a new software program designed for Windows 7. All of this was done without complaint or concern for any special effort.
On a follow-up visit, I interviewed Chea about his policy about service.
"[It was] a matter of providing good service in order to maintain good customer relationships," Chea said. "That's what we want for our customers, and that's what we will give them. Portland has lots of places that compete for customers so we have to give good service to be competitive. It is just the right thing for businesses to do." He went on to say, "I believe in treating people the way I want to be treated. I want people to feel as comfortable as they would be with family. In fact, some of my customers maintain they feel like that. We have been herre for ten years, and that's important.
Today as people shop at sales on Veterans Day and remember those who ultimately serve their country during war and peace, a small business in Portland, Oregon reminds us of good service and why some like Vi remain successful because they put the customer first.
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