Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A New Day in the Life of a Receptionist

I've decided that every day I work as a receptionist (which is four days a week) I will make a compilation of all of the best (and worst) calls that I get in that day. Or at least the best and worst ones by the time I decide I'm bored enough to start on a blog. The calls today have been relatively sane.

Me: *name of business* Northwest. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Is this *name of business*?
Me: Yes, it is *name of business* Northwest. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Stop asking me questions and let me tell you that I need to talk to your Northwest location. I will answer their questions and I have questions to ask them. So connect me to them.
Me: Sir, this is *name of business* Northwest. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Don't ask me questions. I want to talk to somebody in your sales and electronics who knows about the keyboards, because I need to purchase a keyboard. I do not have time to answer your questions, so just let me talk to somebody who is good about the keyboard.
Me: Sir, do you mean you would like me to direct your call to our keyboard department?
Caller: I do not want you to direct me anywhere. I want to talk to an expert of the keyboards!
Me: Okay, sir, I will direct you to Keyboard Department. Hold, please.

Now, I know that towards the end I intentionally attempted to provoke him. But his accent was so funny when he got angry, and really, he just wasn't listening to me. I wasn't asking him questions that were unnecessary. All he had to say was, "Keyboards," and that could have been the end of it.

Caller: Hi, I need to know if you have a book.
Me: For what instrument?
Caller: It is called Book Four for Violin.
Me: Book Four of what series?
Caller: Book Four.
Me: I understand that you would like volume four of the book, but what is the name of the series?
Caller: It is Book Four for Viola.
Me: Is it for Violin or Viola?
Caller: It is for Violin.
Me: And what is the name of the series?
Caller: Book Four.
Me: Hold please.

In the end, I connected him to J.J. who was able to find out after fifteen minutes that the book he wanted was in the Suzuki series. This guy gave me two different instruments and refused to understand that there are several "book four" books in several different series for Violin lessons. Can people really be this dumb?

Me: *name of business* Northwest. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Oh, I'm sorry. I called the wrong number. I was trying to reach *name of business*.
Me: You have reached *name of business*. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Oh, I didn't hear you! I was talking to someone else when you answered and I thought you said something else. I need to talk to Doug.
Me: I'm sorry, Doug works at our South location.
Caller: He works at *name of business*.
Me: Yes, ma'am, he does. But he works at *name of business* South, and you've called the Northwest location.
Caller: So he's not there?
Me: No, he's at the south location. Do you need the number?
Caller: Oh, no, you can just transfer my call.
Me: I'm sorry, ma'am, but my phone is not capable of transferring your call. I can give you the phone number.
Caller: Well, wouldn't it be faster just to have you transfer me?
Me: Yes, it would be faster if my phone was capable of doing a transfer, but it isn't. I can give you the number and you can call them.
Caller: *big, irritated, exaggerated sigh* Fine, I guess I'll just have to dial the number myself.
Me: The number is...
Caller: No, I have the number. Thank you. *click*

I'm not sure if that lady was just calling to give me a hard time, or if she honestly couldn't understand the concept of "I can't transfer your call", but the part that gets me most is how she acted like dialing the number herself was some great, difficult feat that would exhaust her. Or maybe the tone conveyed that it was a mentally taxing task that her small brain couldn't comprehend. Either way, it irritated me.

This next call came in while I was writing this blog, and it's so amazing funny and stupid that it definitely makes my top ten best and worst calls EVER.

Me: This is *name of business* Northwest. How may I direct your call?
Caller: Is your refrigerator running? *laughter*
Me: (knowing immediately where this was going) Yes, it is. Can you do me a favor and catch it for me? I'd do it myself, but I have to answer the calls from the other teenagers that can't figure out how to do a decent prank call.
Caller: Oh...you know that one?
Me: Yes. Is there a department you'd like to talk to, or can you just hang up and prank call Pizza Hut?
Caller: I'll just hang up. Bye! *click*

You know, my parents used to do stuff like that when they were kids. It's annoying as hell when you're a business and you get kids pranking you. Haven't they got anything better to do? I mean, really! The least you could do is come up with a better way to start! When I made prank calls, I preferred answering machines. Then I would leave really angry messages for the boyfriend I thought I was calling who was evidently cheating on me.

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