bad customer experience

Customer Experience: Shaw Cable Strike 2

How can a bad customer experience with Shaw Cable go from good to “WTH?” Answer: pretty quickly. Recently, I had a bad service experience with Shaw Cable where a bill I received was three times the amount I thought it was going to be. There was bad communications and bad in-store engagement and when it was all said and done, I got a blog out of it. That was Chapter One. Now this is about Chapter Two.

Sean, Shaw’s Social Community manager guy, contacted me via Twitter and through comments on my blog to determine how he could help. Hey, great move. I’d felt failed by Shaw in person and on the phone so it was nice to see their online presence being so helpful. Sean was great, he specifically used examples of concerns from my blog to explain how they could have been dealt with better (he agreed with me which always helps my self esteem) and proceeded to explain how negative feedback is shared back to the teams and specific stores. Great! I’ve been heard and it’s getting to the ears that need to hear it. He then suggested I get in touch with him through email, saying:

Moving forward I’d obviously love the chance to correct the situation and review your account details again. Please contact me anytime on Twitter or email me @ shawsean [@] and I’ll ensure things get turned around for you. – Sean

Well I wasn’t exactly sure what he could fix. I said as such in the comments section in response.

As to “correcting the situation”, I will certainly follow up. I’m not sure how it can be corrected but that’s more for you to answer, not I.

So what was he correcting? Very fast recap: I paid Shaw XX amount for internet and when I bumped it up to their lowest tier, the bill shockingly came back triple what I had previously paid. I immediately cancelled cable as I wasn’t properly informed of, or prepared for, the cost impacts. Bob’s your uncle. Done deal. What’s to fix? But, who am I to say? Sean is the Shaw guy. He wants to make it right and he seems to have an idea how he can do that, more power to him.

So a quick email and Sean wants to get to know me better. Swell.

Could you send me your account details so we can investigate further? After I take a look into the account I’ll have a much better idea of what can be done. – Sean

ABSOLUTELY! Here’s my deets. I’m the customer with the bad experience and you’re the guy who’s going to make it better. Awesome engagement and courteous tone. What’s going to happen next?! Jennifer happened. Which was a bit of a surprise if you read Sean’s first comment to me stating that HE would correct the situation and HE would review the account details. What had happened was Sean had left a message for Jenn (I’m going less formal, hope you’re OK with that Jenn) to contact me to resolve(?) the issue.

Good news: Jenn was fantastic. Personable. Engaging. Courteous. Really interested in my concerns.

Bad news: She wasn’t really informed on what my concerns were. She had been given my previous blog and told (as she said to me) to explain my bill. Here’s the problem, I didn’t have a problem with my bill or the math behind it, as I stated IN MY ORIGINAL BLOG. I had a problem with the fact Shaw had provided terrible in-store engagement and communications in explaining the charges BEFORE I got the bill. I explained that to her and she didn’t really have an answer. Lots of awkward pauses. (felt like date)

Jenn did her best. She asked me questions and she wanted to answer any questions I had. The thing was, I just ended up reexplaining everything that was in the blog.

Sean and Jennifer, both nice people with the best of intentions but it was like they were going through some process without understanding the concerns of the customer. Or saying the wanted to help was an auto-reply without really understanding what they could or would do.

To recap:

Sean (social media guy) commented on my blog to show Shaw was monitoring mentions of their name and doing outreach to either:

  1. show anyone else that found my site that they were responding (Look Ma, I commented), without having to actually do anything, OR
  2. had the best intentions of wanting to help but didn’t really take the time to determine what my problem was or how they could help me.

This wasn’t “fixable”, this was an opportunity to have me leave with a positive customer experience. What does that look like? “Try some service free for a month.” “Here’s a deal on the existing internet service you already get.” I don’t know. I wasn’t writing this to get something. It was Shaw that said they could “correct the situation” so that’s on them to decide what they want my last thoughts of them to be. I thought it might be good ones. Silly me.

UPDATE: After Sean wrote the below comment, he called me. He wanted to apologize personally and let me know that he was there if I had any further concerns or complaints. It was a nice follow up, full of empathy and genuine interest in wanting to make sure I left my customer experience with as much of a positive tone as posible. This didn’t feel as much like a  Shaw-Cabe-screw-up-gotta-make-it-right thing but really just Sean and I, two people, talking about customer service and what could have gone better. Nice. (Plus he threw me a $50 credit too. He would have given me a free pay-per-view but I cancelled cable, remember?)

One Comment

  • Hey Russel – I took another read through your original post again just to assess my handling of your case. My understanding was that you were okay with the math of your bill, but weren’t very impressed with the overall explanation and what seemed to be guesswork from the original rep who assisted you. My goals with your case were to pass along your feedback about the retail experience to the appropriate teams and make sure your feedback was heard. Then I wanted to have one of our best people (Jenn) contact you to ensure everything about the charges were explained with precision and zero guesswork.

    What I could have done better is follow up with you to see how things went. You deserved some feedback from me on what actions had been taken to rectify the situation and not doing that was my misstep. Apologies.

    I’m kicking myself that it took another post from you to get me to realize this, but hey – i’m a glass half full kinda guy and am totally okay with learning from my mistakes (if you’re okay with putting up with them). I’ll definitely make sure there’s not a “strike three, you’re out” follow up written and will be in touch.


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