Sympathetic Customer Service Agents

Lately I've dealt with more than my fair share of 1-800 customer service people. There must be some new philosophy sweeping the profession, because they all "sympathize" with my situation. For example (and I'm not making this up), "Oh yes Mr. Murphy, I can totally understand how that would be frustrating if you moved into a new house and your cell phone didn't get any reception. I can see why you'd be calling us."


  1. Anonymous10:41 PM

    This is how I deal with Customer Service "Sympathizers".

    CS: I sympathize with your problem.

    Me: Let me ask you something, when the mother of a close friend dies, do you offer sympathy?

    CS: Of course.

    Me: Do you ask your friend to pay you by the hour when you offer sympathy?

    CS: (nervous laughter) No.

    Me: Are you getting paid to talk to me?

    CS: Yes.

    Me: OK then talking about sympathy is a sneaky trick that customer service teachers teach to get people off the phone with out solving problems. Now I know you probably hate big bureaucratic organizations as much as I do and seeing as you are getting paid for helping me and you sound much more intelligent than most customer service people I talk to, please help me as a friend and forget what they teach you in those long boring classes. Now I bought this stuff and it doesn't work, can it be fixed or are you just going to give me a refund.

    Note: Say all this stuff with the right tone of voice (a let's have fun voice). Keep on mentioning that they are getting paid to talk to you and keep zeroing on getting the problem solved. They usually know what the tricks are to get a problem solved and will sometimes go to extraordinary steps to solve the problem, when you deal with th CS agent in this manner.

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