Tuesday, August 2, 2016

The Other Side of Customer Service

Something interesting happened the other day.

Something that will make you say, "If she thinks THIS is interesting she needs to get out more."

You're not wrong.

I was busy working - I write book reviews for a self-publisher and do a little marketing - and as part of my job I sometimes answer emails in a customer service capacity.  Usually these emails are asking more about the company and how we work, how much it costs to publish...that kind of stuff.

Of course, the company sends out mass marketing emails about specials and things like that and occasionally I'll get an email from someone asking to take them off the mailing list.  But on this day, I received this:

John is  "not going to be available, " has cancer & with Hospice . 

Well, she'd reached the right person.
No, my husband didn't die from cancer, but he did die.  And as we have ALL experienced, he received many customer service calls, mail, and emails despite my attempts to cancel all correspondence and/or put it in my name.

I immediately emailed her back with:

I'm so very sorry to hear that. 
I wish John and his family peace and comfort during this difficult time.

And then I immediately went into our database and took him off the mailing list.

Now, why is this important you may ask?

Because it was something I wish someone had done for me.  

I was able to be on the other side of the situation and take action.  I was able to send a response to someone (could have been his wife, sister, mother...who knows?) that was sincerely sympathetic.  I was able to be the person who took him off a list so that his family might be spared the pain that we've all been through when we check the mail or an online account.

I was able to do this. And while I am heartbroken for a family I don't even know...part of me felt good to hopefully solve one fraction of their problem.

I think the sender appreciated it as well.  A few days later I received: 

Thank you , God bless you  !!

And you.


  1. Thank you! Every piece of mail with my late husband's name that CONTINUED to come and come and come, (even when I called and asked to be removed) was painful. It's been 3 years now, and it's not painful anymore, but I still get mail for him! So thank you for your part in helping someone else.

  2. 7 years later in a state he never set foot in, I get mail addressed to him. My "favorite" is the funeral home trying to sell him a pre-paid funeral plan. I still don't know how his name is associated with this address since everything had to be put in my name to get here.