I cleaned my house! I have a roommate!
What I don’t have is a dishwasher. Not through lack of trying, though… Come now, take my hand, grab a seat and prepare yourself for a True Tale of Horror, featuring my adventures with Sears and the Most Amazing Customer Service Department OF ALL TIME.
Our story begins on a breezy spring day. I have decided that in order to succeed in Operation Stop Being A Failure At Adult I need to do something about the broken dishwasher in my kitchen. Surely having a working dishwasher is something that adults do?
So I go to Sears on my lunch break, because it is close and it sells dishwashers. This plan has everything, it cannot fail!
I thought it would be a quick, painless transaction. I’d go in, buy a dishwasher and then grab a Starbucks or something on my way back to work.
I WAS SO NAIVE.
I browsed the household appliance department, checking out what the options were. My only real criteria was that it had to be able to wash dishes. Really, that’s it. I found one quickly! It was on sale and capable of washing dishes. Everything I needed it to be.
I moved to the next phase of my plan and found a salesperson and said that I’d like to buy this dishwasher. This was my first mistake.
Close talkers irritate me. Pushy salespeople irritate me. At Sears, I was lucky enough to experience both of these things at the same time!
Like most North Americans, I am used to a fairly large amount of personal space. I take it a couple of steps further with my antisocial nature/social anxiety Power Combo, and as soon as force field technology that will prevent people that I don’t know from touching me exists, I will be all over that.
(It’d be kind of neat to be able to adjust the settings to allow you to blast invasive people away from you. It’d be a handy superpower to have and I would totally only ever use it for good. Really.)
(heh heh heh)
Anyway, this guy. This salesdude at Sears was not only a close talker, but also spectacularly incapable of reading body language and social cues. He kept leaning into me. I kept backing away. He’d lean in again. I’d shuffle back. It was this weird and irritating awkward dance that he was too stupid to catch onto. I’m not subtle about this shit. I was literally backing away every time he stepped forward. At one point we’d managed to traverse the entire aisle and I was worried about running out of room to run away.
Then he started his sales pitch. On the dishwasher I had already decided I was buying. While chasing me around his department because he kept encroaching on my bubble and I kept backing away.
I interrupted him mid-sermon.
“Does it wash dishes?”
“That’s really all I care about.”
“But it’s got fan drying, stainless steel, blahblahblah-“
“But does it wash dishes?”
“Seriously, that is ALL THAT I CARE ABOUT.”
I had my wallet out and I kept gesturing to the checkout, practically begging him to take my money and let me leave.
He had trouble ringing me through and had to phone a friend and I was suddenly lucky enough to be dodging not one, but two!, pushy sales people. Both of whom seemed determined to convince me to buy the dishwasher that I was already buying. In a shocking twist of excellence, after PSP1 slowly, painfully, and with much contemplation added me to the system, he discovered he’d added me to the wrong system and we had to start all over again. AWESOME.
I was eventually able to pay and schedule delivery for the first week of June (which seemed kind of long? IDK) and I left to go about my day, textually venting at my future roomie about my Irritating Dishwasher Experience.
Flash forward to May 30. My phone starts buzzing at me in the middle of a meeting. I ignore it because I try not to be that asshole that checks their phone while in a meeting. My phone buzzes again. When my meeting concludes I check my voicemail. It’s the Sears delivery dude, he wants to deliver my dishwasher. Only he doesn’t because he’s pissy at me for not answering my phone and is insinuating that he is “going to turn his truck around right now, young lady, I really mean it” because I didn’t call him back immediately. I got a hold of him, told him to proceed with the operation ahead of schedule and let the roomie know dishwasher job was showing up early.
Only when he goes to unload the dishwasher at my house there’s a honking huge dent in the back. Someone at the warehouse had dropped the box and decided to load it anyway. Good times. (Amusingly enough, there’s a new job posting on Workopolis for a ‘home delivery quality assurance associate’. HOW INTERESTING.) My roommate refuses to sign for the delivery and gets the driver to take the damaged dishwasher back to the warehouse.
Sears is now 0/2 for Customer Service.
My roommate takes the opportunity to voice her discontent over twitter and is contacted by their social media watchdog offering to help. She forwards me the information. Meanwhile, I’m on the phone in what is my third attempt to get someone who can help me on the line (the store I bought the dishwasher from went to voicemail. The number the salesdude gave me didn’t even go to voicemail, it just kept ringing. This time I was calling the Sears Customer Service 800 number). And lo! Somebody answered the phone. Only they couldn’t find me in the system, the insinuation being that I had somehow gotten my own name wrong or something. Turns out they were just looking at the wrong screen all along, but then they looked at the right screen and everything was diamonds (diamonds!). (0/3)
I was then told they couldn’t do anything for me immediately, but they were taking my case Very Seriously and someone that actually could help me would be in contact within 24 hours. (0/4)
Right about this time the twitter Sears people realized I was in Canada and they actually couldn’t help me. They gave me the contact information for their Canadian counterparts and I DM’d them as instructed.
This turned out to be my second mistake. (Perhaps my third if I count going to Sears in the first place as my first?) Because I’d given some social media watchdog my name and phone number, by some glory of twisted corporate logic in the Sears Executive Office, this meant that my previous lodged complaint was deleted because Sears Head office was on the Job! So we basically had to start from scratch. (0/5)
And I wasn’t in the system.
Except I was!
But Somebody would be in touch with me within 24hours! Because they were Taking My Case Very Seriously.
Monday rolls around, no one phones.
Tuesday dawns and I call the Executive Office. No answer.
Get a call from them later in the morning, I was in a meeting so they left a message to reassure me that I was in the system (FOR REAL THIS TIME) and that they were Taking My Case Very Seriously.
I called the Customer Care Center again, they told me to call the Executive Office.
Called the Executive Office. No answer. Left a grumpy voicemail.
The Executive Office called back within 20mins and told me they were — you guessed it! — Taking My Case Very Seriously. And that someone would get back to me within 24 hrs. (0/6)
When I woke up from giving myself an Epic Headdesk Related Concussion, I wondered if that had been their plan all along. Did they intend to frustrate me so badly that I would concuss myself and induce amnesia, forgetting this whole debacle and going on to proclaim Sears the Best Department Store Ever? Seems legit. I mean, can you really fuck up selling a product this badly when the selling of products is the lifeblood of your organization? Was this some Truman-esque farce that was being filmed and broadcast to their quality department as an object lesson in How To Avoid Pissing Off Your Customers? Who can say?
Later that afternoon, somebody from the store where I purchased the dishwasher originally (back in May. May 17, to be precise) finally contacted me. He spent 10 minutes telling me about how awesome their customer service usually is, which you know, doesn’t really speak to my experience, but good for him. Seriously, I was vibrating with excitement over the notion that Sears doesn’t normally fuck things up this consistently and maybe even feeling a little bit special they chose to drop the ball with me. Because I’m special? Whatever.
He apologized for not getting back to me sooner because the sticky note with my contact information and details got buried in a flood of paperwork on his desk (I can only assume it was all glowing reviews about their exceptional customer service from everybody that wasn’t me. Perhaps also some praise for his stellar organization skillz) and he only just saw it. He assured me that he was Taking My Case Very Seriously and I probably made my headache worse from grinding my teeth so hard. I think I may now have a very specific rage trigger related to that phrase. Will have to monitor.
He tried to go off on another spiel about how amazing they usually were and I cut him short by asking him to explain what they were actually doing, however awesomely, to get me the gd dishwasher I had ordered and paid for. He said it was on order and they could deliver it on the 20th. (*twitch*) And, because Sears always gets top marks in the planning and service ticky boxes on the Customer Satisfaction Surveys, I get to stare at the dishwasher in the middle of my kitchen (maybe to get it used to its new home gently? Like a rescue dog?) for an entire day because Sears changed their system so that their appliance delivery peeps no longer do double duty as installation techs. Because that makes a lot of sense. Really. (0/7)
He asked me if I was OK with this. Out of curiousity, I asked him what would happen if I said no, which I guess he wasn’t expecting? IDK. Anyway, because the dishwasher I bought was on sale (list price $800.00. sale price $500.00) he could help me find a $500.00 dishwasher that was maybe in stock that I could get sooner. I couldn’t get one of similar quality to the one I’d actually purchased because, you know, that sale was over now. (0/8) But it would be a dishwasher! That washes dishes! Exactly like I wanted in the first place.
However, I hate losing value. Something in my shrivelled consumer heart turns cold at the thought of having to downgrade due to someone else’s incompetence. I agreed to the 20/21 delivery/installation combo but mentioned that I thought their new policy was ridiculous and nonsensical and had this been in place when I actually went to purchase the dishwasher, I wouldn’t have bought it through Sears, and likely saved myself a migraine and several hours of time that would have been better spent doing anything other than playing clusterfuck phonetag with every service department level in their organization.
He, of course, assured me that he was taking my Case Very Seriously before we hung up.
Now we wait.
I am morbidly curious to see what they fuck up next.
In conclusion, fuck Sears. Seriously. NEVER AGAIN.
In other news, the Hawks made the conference finals and are leading the series against the Kings 2-1. They play again tonight~! :)
The new roommate seems to be working out quite nicely! She doesn’t feel the need to fill every silence with meaningless blather. She likes waffles! She can kill spiders! She makes delicious food! All good things.
I am on the verge of calling it quits with my BFF for many reasons. Because he’s been such an important part of my life for so many years, I’m going to try to talk to him again and figure out wtf is going on. I’m not looking forward to this.
Other than that I’ve been busy and brain dead by turns. I have too many things to think about, which makes me all introspective, but I’m not quite ready to talk about it.