Saturday, 8 September 2012

Service and Reputation

This week I’ve experienced both very poor and bloody marvellous customer service and work from the building trade. Everyone knows that the reputation of a builder, plumber, glazier, carpenter or electrician is paramount in hiring a work man and personal recommendation’s are like gold dust.

I hate getting any of the above in for quotes let alone letting them near my woodwork or plug sockets. I know so many people that have been the victims of terrible or over priced work or at worse threatened by the people they’ve hired – disgraceful! With Mike working away so much and I hate to play either card but.... being a woman and disabled I feel like a vulnerable customer, inviting these people into my house.

I’ve probably watched too many episodes of Watchdog and bad builders shows but I now know to get those gold plated personal recommendations and to Google search firm’s for bad customer reviews or low star ratings, but you can still end up feeling that people just don’t care about their work let alone their customers.

This week I had a firm, who I won’t name, booked in to do work whilst Mike is actually in the country, as you’ve probably gathered from former posts that these are short windows of time, and we spent 8 hours chasing up the whereabouts of the workmen to be told “yes we’ll call you back in half an hour” or “We’ll be there by 3pm” and to eventually be told “sorry there’s been a big mix up we can’t come in until the 28th!” (23 days after the original day of work was planned).

Mike was furious and I was frustrated. I have used this firm before I know they’re a nice family run company who when they get round to the work are fantastic, but their customer service is shoddy! Now do I recommend them? Pre warn people about their bad time management? But show them the wonderful work they do? What would you guys do?

But on the flip side this week I contacted my trusted plumber friend Ryan. As I write this he and Mike are talking D.I.Y in the kitchen whilst Ryan fit’s my new sink.

It’s been 4 Months since we whipped the sink out but no more dishes in the bathroom and buying endless bottles of water – yay! Every time I did I kept hearing a childhood conversation with my Mum:

Me: “Mum! There’s no juice/milk/cola in the fridge!”
Mum: “There’s plenty of water in the taps!”
Me: “Boring!!”

Twenty years later I’ve never missed those blooming taps so much!!


Anyway, Ryan has fitted us in around his work, never over charges for evenings or weekends and it just a lovely friendly guy. I now have his number on speed dial ready for water related emergencies and ready to pass on to family and friends with that gold glowing personal recommendation!

A few manners and going that little extra mile for a customer is just priceless, but why do so many companies get that wrong?

L x


  1. Don't get done get Dom.... Worth watching to become aware. You missed motor mechanics out of the untrustworthy list but best advice I can offer is that; if a builder or decorator is available immediately then be afraid... Very afraid. If they good then they busy!

  2. We had a similar problem. We had a window fitted but the next day we noticed that there were a few cracks in it. They were speedy fitting the original window and taking our money but it took them 15 weeks to replace the window pane. 15 weeks of unanswered phone calls, not getting back to us when we left messages, not replying to our e-mails and not showing up twice. It finally took the owners dad to apologise and send his son round. On the other hand there's Glenn our electrician. He worked 9 hours rewiring our house and fitting a few lights. He was only supposed to be there a few hours and he didn't charge us extra.

  3. You are so right, it's so blinking frustrating. We have been left high and dry many times. We currently have a leaking drain pipe, and no one want to look at it, as the job is so small....very frustrating!
    Tank you for your comment and for voting for my bedtime story. I appreciated both so much :) xx
    Oh and I love the blog name too!


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