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Author Topic: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)  (Read 1508373 times)

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rose red

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This reminded me of what happened at my first job.  I worked for a small mail-order company run by a woman named "Jane."  Jane passed away suddenly while away on business, and it was during this time, a coworker and I had the following customer exchange (I was training):

Coworker:  "Company Name, may I take your order?"  (coworker was on the order line.)
Customer:  "I want to talk to Jane."  (We had been told not to reveal Jane's death, BTW.)
Coworker:  "I'm sorry, Jane is unavailable. This is the order line - do you want to place an order?"
Customer:  "No I want to talk to Jane.  Could you tell her this is (name)?"
Coworker:  "I'm sorry sir, as I've said before, Jane is unavailable.  May I take a message?"
Customer:  "I want to speak to Jane, NOW!  Don't give me that crap, I know she's there."
Coworker:  "Sir, Jane is not on site.  Please call our manager at the main number, which is..."
Customer:  "I don't want your manager, I want to speak to Jane." He adds a few (bleeps).
Coworker:  (Turning red) "Jane is deceased."
Customer:  "Can I leave a message for her, then?"

The customer was rude to demand Jane NOW, but can't the coworker say "Jane is no longer with this company."  Asking if the caller want to leave a message makes it sound like Jane will call him back which will lead to a bigger mess.

BarensMom

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This reminded me of what happened at my first job.  I worked for a small mail-order company run by a woman named "Jane."  Jane passed away suddenly while away on business, and it was during this time, a coworker and I had the following customer exchange (I was training):

Coworker:  "Company Name, may I take your order?"  (coworker was on the order line.)
Customer:  "I want to talk to Jane."  (We had been told not to reveal Jane's death, BTW.)
Coworker:  "I'm sorry, Jane is unavailable. This is the order line - do you want to place an order?"
Customer:  "No I want to talk to Jane.  Could you tell her this is (name)?"
Coworker:  "I'm sorry sir, as I've said before, Jane is unavailable.  May I take a message for the manager?"
Customer:  "I want to speak to Jane, NOW!  Don't give me that crap, I know she's there."
Coworker:  "Sir, Jane is not on site.  Please call our manager at the main number, which is..."
Customer:  "I don't want your manager, I want to speak to Jane." He adds a few (bleeps).
Coworker:  (Turning red) "Jane is deceased."
Customer:  "Can I leave a message for her, then?"

The customer was rude to demand Jane NOW, but can't the coworker say "Jane is no longer with this company."  Asking if the caller want to leave a message makes it sound like Jane will call him back which will lead to a bigger mess.

Jane and her husband owned the company and were very prominent locally and in their field.  Her husband and the manager had decided not to make news of her death public until after the return of the body from overseas. My coworker actually asked if she could take a message for our manager to call him back.  (I'll go back and fix that.)

Bluenomi

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2) Someone had obviously run a film through their camera twice. So one set of pictures included family shots, kids, vacation, etc. Superimposed on the film were pictures of a naked woman. A woman picked up the film and was kicking up a fuss accusing us of superimposing someone else's images on top of her family photos. We assured her that we didn't have the capability of doing that even if we tried. She swore up and down that she didn't know the naked woman in the superimposed photos (which were on the negatives). Finally my coworker asked her, "Well have you checked with other members of your family?" A look of shock came over her, and she said, "Oh. I had better check with my husband." And she walked off.

It wasn't the only time that some customer got angry with us over a double exposed roll of film, and seemed to think someone else's images had somehow floated through the photofinishing chemicals and landed on their film.

I saw that a few times in my photo developing days as well, somehow it was always my fault. Just like it was my fault when people developed out of date film and the prints came out an odd colour.

Ceallach

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This reminded me of what happened at my first job.  I worked for a small mail-order company run by a woman named "Jane."  Jane passed away suddenly while away on business, and it was during this time, a coworker and I had the following customer exchange (I was training):

Coworker:  "Company Name, may I take your order?"  (coworker was on the order line.)
Customer:  "I want to talk to Jane."  (We had been told not to reveal Jane's death, BTW.)
Coworker:  "I'm sorry, Jane is unavailable. This is the order line - do you want to place an order?"
Customer:  "No I want to talk to Jane.  Could you tell her this is (name)?"
Coworker:  "I'm sorry sir, as I've said before, Jane is unavailable.  May I take a message?"
Customer:  "I want to speak to Jane, NOW!  Don't give me that crap, I know she's there."
Coworker:  "Sir, Jane is not on site.  Please call our manager at the main number, which is..."
Customer:  "I don't want your manager, I want to speak to Jane." He adds a few (bleeps).
Coworker:  (Turning red) "Jane is deceased."
Customer:  "Can I leave a message for her, then?"

The customer was rude to demand Jane NOW, but can't the coworker say "Jane is no longer with this company."  Asking if the caller want to leave a message makes it sound like Jane will call him back which will lead to a bigger mess.

I suspect it would be handled similarly to cases where the CEO or somebody super senior has been fired unexpectedly.  I've been in this position where I've had to take messages and not tell the person that they're no longer working there. Why?  Because if it's a major client or similar it can cause a serious outcry to be told casually by the person answering the phone that the VIP you want to speak to is gone:  "What do you mean they're gone?  Why has nobody told us?  Who is going to take care of __________".     

So instead, we'd take a message, and then they'd get a call from a senior person explaining the situation and reassuring them in regards to any impact it would have on them.  (There was usually a plan in place to contact all of the key players and inform them anyway, but it was important such cases were handled sensitively particularly if the person happened to call before they had been notified of the change). 
"Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something"


Sirius

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I ran into a similar situation when the store manager I replaced was fired.  His friends came into the store and asked for him, and I'd tell them, "Fred no longer works here."  When asked for more details I'd tell them, "You need to ask him about that."  That was my stock answer, because I wasn't about to tell the former manager's friends why he'd been fired (gross incompetence, but it's been over 30 years now.)

Piratelvr1121

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This reminded me of what happened at my first job.  I worked for a small mail-order company run by a woman named "Jane."  Jane passed away suddenly while away on business, and it was during this time, a coworker and I had the following customer exchange (I was training):

Coworker:  "Company Name, may I take your order?"  (coworker was on the order line.)
Customer:  "I want to talk to Jane."  (We had been told not to reveal Jane's death, BTW.)
Coworker:  "I'm sorry, Jane is unavailable. This is the order line - do you want to place an order?"
Customer:  "No I want to talk to Jane.  Could you tell her this is (name)?"
Coworker:  "I'm sorry sir, as I've said before, Jane is unavailable.  May I take a message?"
Customer:  "I want to speak to Jane, NOW!  Don't give me that crap, I know she's there."
Coworker:  "Sir, Jane is not on site.  Please call our manager at the main number, which is..."
Customer:  "I don't want your manager, I want to speak to Jane." He adds a few (bleeps).
Coworker:  (Turning red) "Jane is deceased."
Customer:  "Can I leave a message for her, then?"

The customer was rude to demand Jane NOW, but can't the coworker say "Jane is no longer with this company."  Asking if the caller want to leave a message makes it sound like Jane will call him back which will lead to a bigger mess.

Yeah it seems more productive to say "Someone will get back to you if Jane cannot."
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

MissRose

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2466 on: September 07, 2012, 06:05:38 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

ica171

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2467 on: September 07, 2012, 08:09:23 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Luci

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2468 on: September 07, 2012, 08:16:18 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?

Hazmat

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2469 on: September 07, 2012, 08:37:31 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/
A guest is a jewel on the cushion of hospitality. -Nero Wolfe

Indiana

hermanne

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2470 on: September 07, 2012, 08:45:27 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/

Years ago, someone sent a story to Reader's Digest about a computer that acted up when the owner used it, but worked perfectly for the tech. As a joke, the tech taped a picture of himself himslf inside the case. The computer worked fine ever since.
Bad spellers of the world, UNTIE!




otterwoman

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2471 on: September 07, 2012, 10:55:04 AM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/

Years ago, someone sent a story to Reader's Digest about a computer that acted up when the owner used it, but worked perfectly for the tech. As a joke, the tech taped a picture of himself himslf inside the case. The computer worked fine ever since.

I repaired photo lab equipment. I had a machine that only worked when I was standing next to it. If I left the building it was stop working. I DID tape a picture of me to the side of it. And it DID work properly for over a year like that, until the district manager ripped the picture down after I moved from the area. A week later, the machine broke again. The new repair person couldn't get it to work. Ever again. It was removed from the store a year later, still broken.

faithlessone

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2472 on: September 07, 2012, 02:18:48 PM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/

That law also applies to finding things. No matter how long or carefully you look for something, the person you ask to help you will find the thing in five seconds flat. In a really obvious place.

LEMon

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2473 on: September 07, 2012, 07:54:08 PM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/

That law also applies to finding things. No matter how long or carefully you look for something, the person you ask to help you will find the thing in five seconds flat. In a really obvious place.
... that you are absolutely, positively certain you checked ... twice.

blue2000

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Re: Not Going To Happen 'Cause I'm Not Harry Potter (Impossible Patron Requests)
« Reply #2474 on: September 07, 2012, 08:12:58 PM »
My mother noticed my car making a noise when riding in it but it went away recently.  She said take to the dealer anyways, but I said its not doing it now, I cannot ask them to fix something that isn't happening that would not be good.  I took it a few days later when the problem presented itself fully and it was fixed under warranty.

Glad you were able to get it fixed! Usually when things make scary noises/do weird things around here, I can never get it to happen again when a professional is present.

Isn't that a corollary to Murphy's Law?
When a broken appliance is demonstrated for the repairman, it will work perfectly.

From http://www.murphys-laws.com/

That law also applies to finding things. No matter how long or carefully you look for something, the person you ask to help you will find the thing in five seconds flat. In a really obvious place.
... that you are absolutely, positively certain you checked ... twice.

Shhh!!! Don't tell people that! Some of the new people at work are convinced that I have a magic touch, just because I can find things.

I don't tell them that half of it is blind luck - and the other half is knowing where I found it last time!
You are only young once. After that you have to think up some other excuse.