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Call Center Hell: Memories From The Trenches


Call center 1From NyxErebus

Oh gods! The memories from the trenches! O_o *curls up into a fetal ball, rocking to and fro*

I still don't know how I survived five years working mobile service for a large company here in Canada that rhymes with Hell Mobility. People are such idiots.

One christmas period, I was working at activations and it baffled me how uneducated people could be about their credit.

I'd get customer yelling at me because they had to pay a sec dep of $500 because they had shitty credit and they would argue with me that they DID have good credit because they had 10-20 credit cards.

...Uhm...Yeah, and you're on the verge of collections with all of them. Don't you think Equifax would list those, you dumbfuck?

But the best call I ever had was when I was back in CS.

This old lady called up one night and asked if we were the animal control service. She wouldn't believe me that we weren't, because she said the police gave her that number.

My call became legend in the center.

I found the best way to deal with irate idiots that came on the line screaming and yelling was to just give them a swift kick in the form of telling them, "Hey listen, do you want me to help you or not? If so, you will need to calm down now or I will be terminating this call."

Sometimes they'd pull that "customer is king" shit and tell me they could talk to me how they damn well please.

Heh, right. I'd just tell them that no, they could not, as the company was paying me to assist them, not take their verbal abuse. (super cheerful) But thank you for choosing Hell Mobility, have a nice day! *terminate call* ^_^





Had one of those last once. "I'm going to stay on this phone until you help me! (by instantly, as in right now, replacing a laptop. He's 3000 miles away, I don't handle hardware and couldn't teleport it to him anyway.)
(finish typing my ticket while he whines) "No you won't. (click)"


Yeah love it when those idiots get to meet one of my coworkers, Mr. Dialtone. Not a great conversationalist but man he can drone on forever.


Exactly. If you're frustrated and need to vent, I'll listen to you, give you the empathy spiel, and basically help you. If you're a screaming, abusive dick, you get one warning, followed by a Click. Now that I only deal with internal employees, if you really piss me off, I might follow up with an email to your supervisor, his supervisor, and the manager. I've seen people literally reduced to tears by that shit, and Homey don't play that


Tenebris, had a guy who was routinely abusive to people, thinking he was better than us so he didn't have to be at all polite and put one of the call entry girls in tears. So I had her transfer him to me. I started typing everything he was saying as he was saying it and he went on for a minute or so before he caught on I was doing it (I could type 120 wpm at the time, on an IBM Model M clicky keyboard... it'd once been described as 'two skeletons wearing tap shoes having a gunfight during a hailstorm on a tin roof over a rattlesnake farm'). I hadn't said a word other than 'can I have your case number'... He started yelling about how I couldn't do that and he'd have me fired and more abuse, and I took every bit of it down verbatim, with no censoring.

Once he'd finally figured out that I wasn't intimidated, he ran down. "You done? Now, what's your actual problem?" He finally told me, and it was something stupid that I could have fixed ten minutes ago if he'd just shut the fuck up and told me.

I fixed it, and did the ending spiel, he hung up, and I sent email to my supervisor and my manager with the ticket number and the explanation. At the time, calls were only recorded randomly, due to the lack of sophistication and copper phone lines (Noe, anywhere you call that says 'call may be recorded', the call IS being recorded) but fortunately that was one of them.

So, it went up to my manager's manager, to HIS boss, to the director for the entire account, over to their management, then rolled downhill and landed on this guy.

The next time he called in he was very, very polite. I found out unofficially later that he was required to call his supervisor for permission before he called the helpdesk and had been told (After other complaints, not just mine; the others were brushed off as 'the customer is...', well, you know. I won't write something that offensive here) that if the got one more complaint that he would be out on his ass so fast his pants would catch on fire from the friction.

I knew he knew it was me, when he called, from my voice and my keyboard, so he was extra super polite. It was lovely. :D


Whoo Tech Tyger, I'm stealing this for an actual post! <3 Hmm. Retail Balls Award methinks.


Heh. I got carried away with what was intended to be a short reply. :P


VERY nice, TT. Truly was Thrognar's work done that day. Seconded, Ilia. That is definitely deserving of a retail balls award. I remember those keyboards. Loud enough to wake the dead and make them call the cops, LOL


I'm using one of those keyboards now. They finally had to take the one at work away from me because my typing was drowning out my cow-orker who shared the cube on the phone, people couldn't hear him over it. I used to wear the modern squishy key keyboards out in six months, mainly because I learned to type on a manual typewriter that badly needed cleaning, so I tend to pound on the keys pretty hard.

This keyboard I'm now using I bought in 1995 or so, and it was built in 1982... and it's still going strong. Doesn't show any signs of wear or anything after all this time. I once ran a keyboard odometer on a standard night of hanging out on FurryMUCK and in 3 hours I'd typed over 30,000 characters.

I love this keyboard.

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