Play two or more games of solitaire. Make a meal. Watch a complete
TV show. Go to the bathr…never mind. These are a few things people
claim to do while waiting on hold for customer service, according to a
recent survey reported by Reuters.
The survey suggests customer service is not getting better in the
USA. Almost half (43%) of us feel it’s gotten worse during this
recession, contradicting what many of us feel should be happening.
Wait times (for human customer service – not robots) seem to be
getting longer. Add this to our growing predilection for multi-tasking
and you have a buffet of activities people might engage in as they wait
to be served. Some clean the house. Others read. Some probably exercise
and others text or chat while they wait.
One reaction to this might be that longer wait times are okay.
Customers are finding ways to make them palatable. They are flexible.
They adapt. Bravo for customers!
But it would be a mistake for any company to think this way. More
and more customers realize they have options. Sure one option is to
play games or clean the house while waiting on hold. Another is to find
a different company, one that doesn’t make you wait on hold.
Even though it’s entertaining how creative people are when on hold,
it’s not a laughing matter. If you make your customers wait, they’ll
leave. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow but soon. They will leave if
So today I have two questions for you. First, what are you doing
to prevent your customers from having to wait for you? And second, what
do YOU do while waiting on hold for customer service? Inquiring minds
want to know!