You think like a complete banker

Last week I found someone’s cashcard on the street. It was from one of the ‘traditional’ High Street banks. It was a horrible day with rain coming down by the bucket load in central London. I was looking like a Tesco Value Mr Darcy from THAT scene in Pride and Prejudice. A bit.

I thought it would be a nice thing to do to reunite the lost card with its owner – I imagine they were having a far worse day than me as losing access to your money is hugely stressful, especially if you don’t know if it has been lost or stolen.

Before becoming freelance I worked for Metro Bank for a short time – I’m declaring that up front as it might explain why I was so baffled by what happened next. If you worked at Metro Bank you had an amazing service ethic – you didn’t need it drilled into you (we hired for that) but we refined it until you always wanted to do the best for the customer.

This is what happened…

I walked to the nearest bank (I was comedically wet by this point) and eventually spoke to an assistant. I explained that whilst the card didn’t belong to one of their customers it would be great if they could reunite the owner and card. 

They explained to me that the nearest branch of the other bank was a 15 minute walk in the other direction and pointed me back into the torrential rain. Since I didn’t have 15 minutes to spare this wasn’t an option I could take. I won’t name the bank involved, but let’s say it rhymed with Snarkleys.

As I didn’t have time to spare I thought I’d call into a bank on the way back (where I did have an account) and see if they could be more helpful. They looked at me in a baffled fashion when I suggested they could somehow make steps to either reunite the cardholder with the card or let him know that it had been found. They took the card away and said they’d cut it up. They wouldn’t contact the other bank as the customer would eventually notice, cancel the card and so it wouldn’t make much difference. I won’t name the bank involved, but if you live in ‘the world’ they will be your ‘local bank’. 

Here is what I think would have happened in a service orientated bank – or just one with employees that thought about people

  • Somebody might have got me a towel (I was dripping wet)
  • There would have been interested in my issue/challenge – rather than just trying to deal with me as quickly as possible and move onto the next query
  • The bank would have offered to do one of the following i) find a way to reunite the card with the owner ii) find a way to notify the owner
  • Somebody would have said ‘I’m sure the cardholder would have appreciated you trying to help them, thanks’
  • After I left someone would probably have walked the card to the nearest branch of the other bank (or at least called them)

Why would they do this? Well, the person might even have been commercially aware enough that doing something useful for the person who lost the card might make them think about changing banks. Or they might just be a considerate person who likes helping.

Those two things probably aren’t mutually exclusive. We used to love helping people at Metro Bank because we wanted them to be fans and tell stories about how they had been surprised and delighted.

Those stories are nicer ones than, for instance, how your bank manipulated LIBOR or missold PPI.

Stories count – my experience with the lost cashcard is a story. Every interaction is an opportunity for a story.

Brands can distinguish themselves through the ways they help people – even those who aren’t customers.

Choosing not to help people also says a lot about you too…

‘It’s the same old story…’

Skyfail – a secret service

Skyfail – a secret service

Please share and RT this in the hope that Sky try and improve their service

I moved house on Thursday and Sky Broadband was supposed to be up and running on Friday. I’m posting this using the signal from my phone.

With the exception of the removal of my password details everything else is a straight cut and paste from the Live Chat Service. I have not altered anything to make it funnier….

Welcome to Sky Live Chat Service. A Sky Advisor will be with you shortly. Your chat may be monitored and recorded for training, legal and compliance purposes. info 7:47

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi , you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

my broadband wasn’t connected as expected yesterday. I’d like an explanation and an update please? Me 7:49

Hello? Me 7:50

Hi you are chatting to a home move advisor is this a new account that was set up Nancy 7:50

it is…can you put me through to someone that can help? Me 7:51

I am sorry that you were incorrectly transferred to me Nancy 7:50

my fault, clicking vainly to try and get someone who can help 🙂 Me 7:52

I am sorry you had to do this Nancy 7:51

Please wait – we are transferring your chat to a Sky Advisor who can help you. info 7:51

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

Please wait – we are transferring your chat to a Sky Advisor who can help you. info 7:52

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

I’d like an update to explain why my broadband wasn’t connected yesterday please Me 7:53

Please wait – we are transferring your chat to a Sky Advisor who can help you. info 7:52

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

I’d like an update on why my broadband wasn’t connected please? Me 7:54

Are you having issues with Sky Broadband? Clinton7:56

yes,,. having issues with being randomly transferred between advisors… Me 7:57

and sky broadband Me 7:57

Please wait while your chat is transferred to Nancy . info 7:58

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

Hi – is this the same Nancy I started off with? I’m a new customer – my broadband isn’t working, I’d like an update… Me 8:04

Please wait while your chat is transferred to Nancy . info 8:03

Please wait while we connect you to a Sky Advisor, then ask your question. info 8:03

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat ** Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

this is the sixth time I’ve been transferred, is anyone there? Me 8:05

HI I am sorry this is happening to you Nancy 8:05

thanks Nancy – but I’m starting to get more than a little frustrated Me 8:07

Please wait – we are transferring your chat to a Sky Advisor who can help you. info 8:06

Please wait while we connect you to a Sky Advisor, then ask your question. system 8:09

Please wait while we connect you to a Sky Advisor, then ask your question. system 8:09

Please wait while we connect you to a Sky Advisor, then ask your question. system 8:09

Please wait while we connect you to a Sky Advisor, then ask your question. system 8:10

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

could somebody please tell me what is happening or what you are trying to do? I just keep getting told I’m being transferred. Nobody even says they are going to transfer me so that I know what is going on? Me 8:11

I’m a new customer. My broadband hasn’t come online. I’d like an update Me

I see that you were chatting with one of my colleagues. Please give me a minute while I go through the chat to identify the query. Sunil 8:10

Thank you for you patience. Sunil 8:15

I understand that you looking to access your Sky account and unable to verify the Sky iD with the account details. I’ll ask you a couple of questions to gain some more information and then advise you what needs to be done next. Sunil 8:15

What’s your Sky iD(username)? Sunil 8:15

no – I’m after an update on my broadband status. Me 8:17

it should have been connected yesterday and wasn’t. I don’t know how I can be clearer on this if you’ve read this chat? Me 8:18

Please wait – we are transferring your chat to a Sky Advisor who can help you. info 8:19

** Please do not share your full credit card information, security code or CVV during this chat **

Hi David DSouza, you’re through to Sky Live Chat, how can I help you today?

I see that you were chatting with one of my colleagues. Please give me a minute while I go through the chat to identify the query. Rajesh8:19

I’ve been on this chat 30 minutes now. I’ve been transferred without warning multiple times. Nobody will own my problem. I should have had broadband connected yesterday – it wasn’t, I’d like an explanation and an update please. Me 8:21

Thanks, you’re chatting with Rajesh and I can certainly help you with your query. Rajesh8:20

Hi David, I will certainly help you. Rajesh8:21

I am sorry to hear that you are on chat for 30 minutes. I apologise for any inconveniences caused. Rajesh8:22

I am sorry to know that your Sky Broadband is not active, Let me access your account and help you with the number for the correct team. Rajesh8:23

Let me access your account first. Rajesh8:23

To access your account details, I will need to ask you some security questions. If, for any reason, this chat ends before we finish our conversation today, any changes we discuss that have not been confirmed will not be updated on your account. Please contact us back if this happens, and we can make sure everything is updated for you. Is that ok? Rajesh8:23

are you actually able to help or am I going to answer security questions for you to give me a phone number Me 8:25

David, Let me check this accessing your account and I will help you with the correct number, so that you do not have to wait for the long time Rajesh8:24

ok Me 8:26

Are you the named Sky account holder? Rajesh8:25

yes Me 8:26

Please confirm the full name/surname for the account along with the full home address including postcode. Rajesh8:25

(removed) Me 8:26

Thank you. Rajesh8:25

Please also confirm the first and third characters from the password on the Sky account. This is not your My Sky password and please do not supply your password in full. Rajesh8:26

(removed) Me 8:27

Excellent! Rajesh8:26

Thank you for confirming those details, please bear with me a moment while I access your account and get the information I need. Rajesh8:26

Thank you for your patience. Rajesh8:26

I have accessed your account and checked that you have Sky Fiber optic Broadband. Rajesh8:27

I will help you with the right number to contact, I request you to contact our dedicated team at  08444964571. Rajesh8:28

As we are from Live chat TV help team, There is no chat support for the Fiber optic, I request you to call our dedicated team, they will help you. Rajesh8:28

Before I recap on our chat today, is there anything else I can help you with? Rajesh8:29

I accessed and checked my account already – I know what I have ordered. It hasn’t been connected and I want to know why it hasn’t and when it will be. I couldn’t have made that clearer. I told you not to take me through security and then tell me you couldn’t help. You ignored me and wasted my time anyway. Feel free to recap the chat if that feels different to you? Me 8:30

I told you specifically – don’t take me through security if you are going to give me a phone number to contact. Me 8:31

Yes, I have accessed your account and checked that your services should go live on 11/04/2014, Rajesh8:30

As the Fiber optic is taken care by the BT engineer, they help in provisioning this. Rajesh8:30

The delay is due to the BT engineers, as they have to active this, and Sky will activate this from the Exchange. I am sure when you contact this number, They will help you to activate this services. Rajesh8:31

You say ‘should go live’. That was yesterday. Have you any conception of what it feels like to experience this as a customer. Thanks for your time. I’ll try and work out how to get 45 minutes of my life back Me 8:33

Yes,  this services should go live yesterday. I understand your concern, I will provide a feedback to the higher management team , regarding the Fiber Optic customers. I am sure this will be taken care further. Rajesh8:33

I will complaint on behalf of you, so that no customers should face this going further. Rajesh8:34

thanks, have a great day Me 8:35

You too… Rajesh8:34

Have a Great weekend. Rajesh8:35

It was pleasure chatting with you today. 🙂 Rajesh8:35

Before I recap on our chat today, is there anything else I can help you with? Rajesh8:35

This number is free from your Sky phone. Rajesh8:35

MY PHONE DOESN’T WORK, YOU HAVEN’T CONNECTED IT Me 8:37

Alright. Rajesh8:36

Are you able to hear a dial tone on your phone? Rajesh8:36

I have accessed your account and checked that your phone line is active. Rajesh8:36

Look, no offence, I’m stopping now. This has been a huge waste of my time. Have a good day. Me 8:38

Please stay connected. Rajesh8:37

I will transfer the chat to the Sky Talk team, they will help you to fix the phone fault. Rajesh8:37

Thanks, but a transfer is the last thing I want. Have a great weekend. Me 8:39

I am sure the phone fault will be fixed. Rajesh8:38