Slack ser­vice a bug­bear

Central Otago Mirror - - FRONT PAGE - Dun­can Field

Nor­mally I take most things with a grain of salt. This is prob­a­bly due to 30 years of see­ing both sides of the story and try­ing to draw any ar­gu­ment to common ground. But bug­ger it – things have got un­der my skin and it’s my turn to vent.

First, somebody in­tro­duced me to the Queen­stown Whinge Face­book page. Good lord, where do th­ese peo­ple come from? Wher­ever it is they should get back there fast and the sooner the bet­ter. If you have got a prob­lem with some­thing go and talk to somebody who can do some­thing. Or at least have the guts to put your name to it so I can take you se­ri­ously.

I’ve spent aweek in those ‘‘your call is im­por­tant to us . . . but we are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing un­usu­ally high de­mand’’ type phone an­swer­ing queues. But I know I’m not im­por­tant. The or­gan­i­sa­tions in­volved are sim­ply trans­fer­ring their costs to me; stalling me on the line be­cause their time is more valu­able than mine. For pub­lic agen­cies in par­tic­u­lar, who are meant to be pro­tect­ing the most vul­ner­a­ble, with­hold­ing a friendly ‘real per­son’ to deal with is just plain wrong.

For sev­eral months now I have been field­ing (no pun in­tended) calls from an or­gan­i­sa­tion chas­ing my el­derly mother to buy a per­sonal med­i­cal alarm. Her an­swer is ‘‘my son han­dles all that’’. That’s fine but the re­peated high pres­sure tele­phone calls are an­noy­ing. No mat­ter how worth­while the prod­uct, I find this sort of pres­sure ap­plied to the el­derly is pretty low. PS, it’s not St John.

I spent all day re­cently try­ing to ring West­pac in Queen­stown who were too busy with cus­tomers to take an­swer their phones. I was try­ing to sort out a lost pass­port left in Grey­mouth by vis­i­tors who were de­part­ing Queen­stown mid­week. A gi­ant ‘rasp­berry’ to the West­pac branch in Camp St and to the Grey­mouth branch who, hav­ing been asked to send the doc­u­ment to Camp St, sent it to Frank­ton. And a big ‘choco­late fish’ to the per­son in the Frank­ton branch who, hav­ing spot­ted the pass­port, let me know it was ready to be col­lected there. ◗ Dun­can Field owns Li­mou­sine Ser­vices Queen­stown, is a past chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Queen­stown coun­cil and an oc­ca­sional con­sul­tant.

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