Customer Service from an Esso Store Manager
To get a true feeling of the whole situation you need to first know some history, so the wife and I had just been in EuroDisney for 3 days with our our two children. The time was circa. 10:30pm and we still had over two hours left to drive from Ashford in Kent to Northampton. It had been a long few days and it still wasn’t over, so we were pretty tired and fed up. Nonetheless we needed petrol and some energy food so we stopped off at the M20 services just outside of Ashford, on route to London.
I started to fill the car up whilst my wife went in to pay, I pulled the nozzle out of the pump and the counter reset to 14p and not to zero. So I waited a moment and nothing happened, in the end deciding to place the fuel nozzel back on the pump and pull it off again. This time I setarted to fill up with petrol. After a short while my wife came out of the shop and asked what drink I wanted, so I took the opportunity to tell her about the incident with the pump and that we only need to pay for the actual fuel delivery.
Once the car was full I waited whilst the children slept in the back, and waited, and kept watching her in discussion at the till and waited some more. Eventually I saw who was clearly a manager come over from the main services, and I waited some more. In the end I thought this coudl not all be over 14p, so I went in to see what was going on. It turned out that a cashier had accidently charged someone else for our fuel and they were trying to rectify the mistake. After some 20 minutes they had that resolved and were ready to serve us, with our petrol and small banquet of food to get us through the journey home.
The Esso store manager then demonstrated his highly atuned customer service skills, in a rather sarcastic voice, “For the sake of just 14p to mind if I just charge you it?”. So I replied stating we had been standing around now for almost half an hour and have another two hours drive home, why not throw in a £7 pillow for our daughter to help her sleep on the journey home and call it quits, to which he replied “No, but I will sell you one.” “In that case no it is not alright if you overcharge me 14p for my petrol.”
To get this right, we were left waiting whilst they tried to correct a mistake they had made on another customer, and we were then asked if they could overcharge us for our petrol? If the tables were turned I would have apologised for keeping our customer waiting (lesson #1) and if it was a pain to try and amend the charge in the till for the 14p would have offered to push a couple of bars of chocolate through for free as guesture to make up for the inconvenience (lesson #2). I wouldn’t have had the audaity to ask if the customer would mind if I overcharged them, it just isn’t right!
This has to be Customer Service at it’s absolute best surely?