DIARY: RANT

Whatever happened to that now extinct species, the BT-trained telephonist?

Whatever happened to that now extinct species, the BT-trained

telephonist?



She knew how to handle incoming calls and would happily transfer media

sales people to the managing director with a bright ’certainly’.



These days, if I ask to speak to, say, Mr Smith, I am asked my name,

company, nature of my call and whether Mr Smith knows why I am

phoning?



Of course he doesn’t, unless he carries a crystal ball with him.



It’s like the Spanish Inquisition. I answer all these questions, give

the secret password plus my inside leg measurement, only to be told,

’he’s on holiday for two weeks’.



And what do ’he has just stepped out’, ’she’s not available’ and ’he’s

off-site’ actually mean? Where are they all and when can I speak to

them?



And what about ’there’s no reply at the moment’? OK, but when will I get

a reply?



With the onslaught of voicemail, the answer is never. How do they win

new business without speaking to anyone?



Yesterday I was told by a telephonist I could only speak to the person’s

voicemail and that they had no paging facility. Having left ten messages

on the offending voicemail already, I declined to increase my phone bill

any further. My order could have been worth millions.



Got something to rant about?



Call 020-8267 4718 or e-mail greg.hughes@haynet.com.