Saturday, April 30, 2011
Less than two weeks ago, I had a bad experience at work with a very nasty and rude customer. She humiliated and berated me in front of my fellow employees. She accused me of being nasty because she thought I did something, which I did not. You could not imagine how embarassed I was when she was talking nasty to me in front of people and not feeling satisfied, she called our branch manager and reported to him her wrong accusation. I was so humiliated and hurt. I wasn't able to move, I felt my body numbed. I had to gather all my strength to keep my mouth from answering back at her. If I did that I would've put the company in jeopardy. The company I work for has been known for its high standard of customer service and has been on top in customer satisfaction surveys. I didn't want to be defensive in front of our manager too because then I would lose my chance of explaining my side to him after she's gone. I just hoped that I would have that chance.
As I expected, after that woman left, I was called by our branch manager to his office and he apologized for what had happened. He commended me for keeping my self-control and told me he was proud of me. He said he'd known me for more than a year as a very good employee and that I was doing an awesome job. He sent me home three hours short of my shift and would get paid for full shift. He said that that's the least that the company could do for going through that very rough day. During that time, all I could feel was pain and humiliation that I couldn't see any positive thing about what I just went through. I cried all the way home, wondering how could a human being be that cruel enough to humiliate and accused me of being nasty and other bad things when she didn't even know anything about me. I even thought of quitting my job in the customer service and just move to other department where I don't have to deal with people's bad attitude. In my one year and four months in the customer service, I have encountered people who were unreasonable, unfair, angry, agitated and some were also rude but this last one has really shaken and challenged my composure. There was something in her that really made me feel so bad besides from the fact that I really find it hard to deal with when I am unfairly accused of doing something I didn't do.
But the following day was my day-off and I spent big part of that day processing my reaction and feelings toward that customer. Many of my coworkers and staffs sent me comforting emails and my facebook profile was stormed with different reactions, love and support from family and friends that gave me different perspective and helped me came out of that negative feeling as quickly as I could. A friend sent me a video that really made that experience a process for me to learn and grow professionally.
Thinking back to that moment now, I can only look at it from a different perspective. It gave me chance to reevaluate and look deep inside myself. These are my realizations:
First, I realized that all my hard works as employee had been noticed not only by my department manager, but up to the highest level of management in our branch too.
Second, I felt the support of my co employees and experienced teamwork even in a very challenging personal situations.
Third, I was reaffirmed of the fact that I am so lucky to have so many friends who will always be their to give their love and support anytime I need them (so many people doesn't have anybody they can call friend).
Fourth, in spite of that experience with that woman and three more from her ethnic origin in the past, I didn't give in to my tendency to stereotype people. I know a lot of people and have some friends from her race who are so kind hearted, very educated and well mannered. So I just consider them few bad grain from a sack of good rice.
Fifth, in spite of the fact that I had been renewed and had been through series of seminars, trainings and renewals in my faith, I just realized that I still have that pride in me that made it hard for me to forgive when somebody hurts me.
Sixth, I questioned my vanity of enjoying the appreciation and compliments from people and yet allow that single bad experience from a person to hurt me and made me feel bad about myself.
Seventh, I learn to appreciate those countless number of customers I have encountered that have been nice and have made my days at work a lot better and less stressful.
Posted by Amie at 12:28:00 AM