Columns Old

Just another WordPress site

Archive for December, 2017

48 hours

without comments

How do they do it?

Netflix now has nineteen channels devoted to true crime. I’ve already covered Scott Peterson!

This is a really good story.  No spoilers here!!

I don’t know if I’d wish it on anyone, but watching reruns of American Greed on Dailymotion does have its learnings.  Murder She Wrote on Watchseries is more fun.

Oh well, click for spoiler.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by admin

December 29th, 2017 at 9:20 am

Posted in Uncategorized

without comments

If it is on the shelf and mismarked, that is the policy; if it is misstated or deceptive it is illegal, that is the law.

As I was talking to the woman, trying to get her attention and see the logic behind what she was doing, another customer contributed her two cents.  “She’s just doing her job,” she said.

I tried to sneak in before 8 but the store was already crowded.  Half the self-checkout area was open.  The woman was looking at a computer three feet in front of my little area.  I told her the bottles of soda I was buying were not ringing up properly.  It’ll correct at the end, she said.

When the end came I said again that it wasn’t happening.  She walked away without saying anything.  It was 18 cents per bottle.

It wasn’t a line, it was more like a mob.  Now the place was crowded and I still standing there.

The woman who calmly sided with the really strange woman manning the computer is absolutely right.  She was doing what she is told to do RE the 19 cents.

It is deeper or more complicated than have or have not.  If it hadn’t happened before I would have been way more compassionate.  I was beginning to put together a theory.

I still say there is more to it than grunt or snob, rich or poor, worker or employer, or customer or seller.

I don’t believe that.  I think if you are given a wrong and potentially illegal order it is you job to question it.  Some people will question it and there are other people like me too.  In this case I know where it comes from (the manager) and you should question it.  If you don’t it is just a bunch of yes people following a lot of bad orders.

Is it illegal too?

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by admin

December 24th, 2017 at 9:03 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Strange times

without comments

Denver Post.

Strange times.

As I approach 60 and retirement,

  1.  Free phone.
  2.  Free health insurance.
  3.  Social security.
  4.  Reverse mortgage.
  5.  Reduced property taxes.

These are all government programs.  And here’s the kicker:

6.  Roth IRA withdrawals do not count as AGI (or MAGI), adjusted gross income, at age 59 1/2.  That is unbelievable.  Who said America isn’t a great country?  This is all within an environment of not paying any income taxes at all.  It is really hard to believe but it is true.

That’s right.  If you live off an IRA you may qualify for Medicaid.  At least that’s what happened to me when I went to sign up for Obamacare.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by admin

December 21st, 2017 at 2:04 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Customer satisfaction #331

without comments

I can still write here if I turn the volume up and use a large fan.


If you shop and someone makes you an offer that’s where it starts.

The movie and the book are fantastic.  Have you ever seen the TV show The Paper Chase?  One of the nuggets is contract law.

An offer is made, it is accepted, and money changes hands.  That is where it starts.  But customer satisfaction goes so, so much farther.


“The epitome of customer service and satisfaction.”


How do you win at customer satisfaction?  You always win.  You always win because you are always free to leave.  It is like the stock market or a lot of things, if it is too stressful or risky, get out.

Maybe there are no great alternatives.  Maybe or even probably you are not thrilled.  If that’s the case you can still be satisfied.  Just forget it and accept it for what it is.

It is not about proving you are right, it is about making choices you are satisfied with.

And now, virtually everywhere, there are more choices and it is easier than ever.  You can go with the big guys or find niche offerings if you want.  You can quickly collect information.  And it works to make everyone better and in all directions.  It is really easy to complain.

The top companies are the ones who excel in this environment.  By now it is all in place and it is there to use if customers choose to.


T. Rowe Price.

It does remind me of ancient marketing 101 and market share.  I think the top three are Vanguard, Fidelity, and Schwab.  T. Rowe Price could have done it but they either chose not to or failed, and it is almost certainly the latter.  I was stunned to find they still conform to long, long ago “correspondence teams” for communication with customers.  For employees, they don’t let you use email or phones.  For customers, you are receiving email from someone you have never even spoken with or communicated with.  It is hearsay.  It is terribly unproductive and generally a pain in the ass for all involved.

You know how they say it is always wise to review your insurance policies every few years?  It is time to take the money and run.

In a broader sense, you can tell when they lie, hide, and cover up.  That is always a big clue.  Poke ’em a few times and see how they respond.  Are they state of the art or a fraud?

If you look closely you can see Bernie Madoff.  The SEC doesn’t prohibit email communication, customer service, and solutions.  Nor does it have to be behind a firewall on a website filled with your promotions.  About that…  you should make customers want to go there, if only your crummy Android app worked; BTW, you can’t log in on my Android browser either.

The reason they don’t do it is because their customer service representatives are too unskilled and enabled to handle it.  If they start putting things in writing they’re going to get caught.  A lot.  When you start arguing with customers about arbitrary and incorrect account naming, and how it affects arbitrary and inconsequential account handling which results in very real customer transactions–and then refuse to fix it–you are sleazy.  You are preventing customers from freely moving their money and you are just like Bernie Madoff.;  In years past I would have sent it but that would just be an unnecessary clue and that’s another reason why this business is so fascinating and why this one company is so dumb.  Also, for a number of reasons, I think it would just be pointless.  You can see it everywhere.  It is not a customer focused company.  It is the same company that not too long ago used to require faxes.  The ceo is a finance guy.

They don’t even provide email service or support.  They don’t have weekend or evening customer service hours.

Why build and operate a huge customer care center in Colorado Springs if you are not going to use it evenings and weekends?








Read the rest of this entry »

Written by admin

December 4th, 2017 at 10:37 am

Posted in Uncategorized


without comments

If I ever go out of business as a blogger, or go into business as a blogger, that will be my bane:  finishing stories.  RE the one below, I realized I am disappointed in her because I think she can do better.  I also realized disappointment is where my involvement ends.  I sure was hoping you were farther along with the moving-on process but that sounds more like changing someone than any other type of involvement.

First a correction:  no, you and I couldn’t get close and I certainly wasn’t a third husband.

Anyway, I stopped with the last email.  I didn’t read Walt’s end or contact anyone further.  And I never, ever checked blog stats to see who is reading what may be below.

Yes, it is “you” and it is written in the second person.  It is weird to see some of the things written in third person referring to “her.”  It was only because other methods failed.

Written by admin

December 4th, 2017 at 10:28 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Michael Flynn

without comments

This guy has a lot of problems.


Written by admin

December 1st, 2017 at 2:06 pm

Posted in Uncategorized