Money Matters: PayPal Scam Nearly Cost Loss of Wedding Dress

ON-CH578_paypal_M_20171013112043For years PayPal has been labeled the easiest and fastest, and safest way to send and receive money, buy and sell, and monitor all transactions.  They use specific identifying tools to protect their customers from fraud and scam.  These identifying tools help their customers confirm all transactions, monitor activity, and report anything suspicious all for the sake of helping their customers have a good experience using PayPal.  Image from Barrons Next.

However, over the years PayPal has been at the forefront of phishing scams. transaction scams, fraudulent activity — all because criminals are continuing to find ways to disguise themselves as PayPal by hiding behind fake email correspondence in the attempt to convince would-be suspects that they are legitimately receiving emails from PayPal.   These emails:

  • Alert them of pending transactions
  • Will ask them to verify their username and password for the purpose of verifying their account
  • Will ask money to sent before a transaction can be completed
  • Will include your name if you are in contact with someone who is purchasing item you are selling and wants you to send money before the transaction can be completed and will send a too detailed email
  • Will refer to you as PayPal User

If consumers are not aware of these scams or how to spot them they are at the risk of losing hundreds to thousands of dollars because they are quick to assume that the emails are genuine.  The key thing to note is that if a consumer has a PayPal account genuine emails will go directly to their inbox because they use verifying factors to help accounts.  These factors include:

  • Account verification when you create a new account
  • Provides email confirmations when changes have been made to the account
  • Provides email confirmations when user account settings have been changed such as passwords, email changes, and when bank accounts, credit cards, and debit cards have been added/updated
  • Notification of PayPal debit request

Years back PayPal notified their customers making them aware of a huge phishing scam emails that were going around, what to look for and how to avoid them.  They were alerting their customers of the verifying factors used to help customers identify true PayPal emails, what information PayPal would never ask for, and how their customers are addressed in order to protect their customers.

Today phishers are finding new ways to disguise themselves as PayPal support and purchases are also using PayPal tactics to steal items from sellers who send them in good faith under the belief that the purchaser is using a legitimate PayPal account to send payment.

What you should know:

  • PayPal will never ask to verify username or password to verify accounts
  • They will never ask customers to send money in order to receive money
  • PayPal uses specific identifying factors to verify their customers
  • They use an email system unique to their email communications.

 

The picture below is a copy from an actual email that was sent with regard to what was supposed to be a PayPal transaction that involved the purchase of a wedding dress that was to be shipped to Atlanta, GA upon receipt of payment.

FakePayPal

After the seller had contacted the buyer who had expressed interest, the seller was then told she would ship the dress upon receipt of payment which the buyer indicated she would send $300 plus $50 for shipping via PayPal.  The seller logged in to her PayPal account to update her bank card information and updated her address.  She immediately received emails in her inbox from PayPal alerting her to the changes that she had made.

The next day the seller was notified by the buyer of the payment she sent via what was allegedly to be PayPal.  The tell-tell sign that something was fishy was that the email stated that the limit that could be received could not be less than $550 and because the buyer had supposedly sent $350, it could not be credited to the seller’s account.  There was another email that was sent (not shown) stating that the $550 had been sent, but $200 had to be refunded back to the buyer in the form of two $100 iTune gift cards.  Who needs $200 in iTune gift cards?  Confused about this, the seller read the emails a number of times and was thrown off by the note in both emails stating that PayPal could not be reached by phone, but by email only.  She looked at the email it came from and noticed it was a Gmail email address.  The seller contacted her mother who has been a PayPal customer since 2004.  The mother — after reading the emails — confirmed her daughter’s suspicions that the emails were fake. This prompted the seller to make two phone calls to PayPal who:

  1. Confirmed what the seller’s mother had told her that the emails were fake.
  2. The email noted for the buyer was confirmed as having no email account on record for the buyer
  3. There was no record of an incoming payment to the buyer’s PayPal account
  4. PayPal simply notifies customers that they received a payment in their account
  5. They did not express there being a limit to how much could be sent via PayPal
  6. PayPal does not ask customers to send money in order to receive money
  7. Expresses the importance of not providing any personal/vital information to a buyer who is being suspected of fraud.
  8. PayPal will not tell customers they cannot be reach via phone but email only, especially with regards to payment transactions.

Any suspicious activity on any one customer is brought to the attention of that customer immediately.  PayPal emphasizses the importance of being notified if someone is suspected fraudulent activity and welcomes customers providing as much information as they possibly can.  This helps to continue in increases security measures to protect their customers.

The buyer was contacted by the seller notifying her that PayPal verified there was no payment received.  The buyer accused the seller of trying to rip her off when in fact it was the other way around.  No money had been received therefore there was no money to refund.  The seller told the buyer she only had $150 available in her bank account.  The buyer wanted it and continued to contact the seller to see if she sent the money.  The seller continued to inform the buyer that she received no money and that PayPal had no record of a transaction on the account.  The buyer threatened to sue the seller, which at the point the seller welcomed it informing that buyer that she got caught and was going to be reported.  The buyer was reported to the selling platform the dress was listed for sell, she was reported to PayPal — all information was provided to them.  The dress had been shipped, but was able to be intercepted and was returned.  The buyer was never heard from again.

Moral of the story, you are not going to always know who you are selling your items to once you list it for sell on various platforms.  Best thing you can do is sell your items on local listings.   Educate yourself on how PayPal works should you choose to except payment via their service.  Contact them if you have any questions on their policies which they update and send out regularly.  Report anything suspicious to PayPal if you suspect someone is trying to scam you using their name and logo.  Do not provide any personal information to a buyer especially if something does not seem right.  You can call PayPal to verify any information related to transactions.

The more you know and the more educated you are, you are keeping scammers out of your neighborhood.

The Weekendend Follow Up (Early Edition): Mo’Nique Speaks Out on Worth & Equality and Answers to Being Donkey of the Day

To be blackballed in today’s Hollywood, we need to first educate ourselves and understand why an actor/actress faces this in their career and what brought them to this point in their career.

If anyone has been paying attention, videos have been surfacing with Mo’Nique speaking out on her career as in where it stands today and not looking at where it’s been in the past, and what actually occurred to why she was out of sight and out of mind for ten years.  In her videos she is making the argument that Netflix is not paying her “her worth” as compared to Dave Chapel and Amy Schumer whom she so eloquently made a comparison to.  And as we look back Viola Davis made the same argument with comparison to Meryl Streep and other actresses who have stellar careers.  But what is the difference between Mo’Nique and Viola Davis?  Well, let’s think about this for a moment.

First of all, Viola Davis does not have a ten year gap in her resume that she is not acknowledging while making the argument of being paid “her worth” for roles she is asked to take on.  And she had an amazing series, “How to Get Away with Murder,” on the ABC network which was very popular.  Viola Davis has a stellar career with awards to show for her hard work and dedication.  Therefore she can pick up the phone, sit in meetings and demand higher pay because she has a reputable reputation that shows for it.  Also, she knows how to play the game and knows how to play by the rules.  Secondly, whereas Mo’Nique seems to think that letting the color of her skin overshadow her ability to do the job she is contracted to do gives her the right to behave badly when she [for the lack of a better term] does not get her way and chooses not to play by the rules and play the game the way it should be played, she chooses to think it a racial thing and that she is being treated unfairly while caucasion women are getting paid more than her.  If you are not doing your job, you are not going to get paid what you think you’re worth.  Doesn’t work that way.

The contract Netflix offered her would have been one to help put her back in the scene of Hollywood’s limelight, thus making her relevant again.  But what she does is show lack of class by trying to fight for something she has not yet earned having fallen from grace with being blackballed resulting from her inability to act in away a true black actress should have acted.  It was an embarrassment to other black actors and actresses whose careers have been successful, and who have fought to be on top of their careers, thus getting paid what they are worth.

Whether or not it was comparable to what she is used to making as an actress whether black or white, and having the grounds and basis for making the argument for higher pay, we have to understand first why she was blackballed to begin with.

First of all , let’s be clear that this has nothing to do with being gender bias, racism or even reverse racism.  We have to call it what it is, she was blackballed.  That is all that can be said about this, and she seems to be purposely avoiding acknowledging that one fact to explain the huge gap in her career.

So the fact that she is even making that claim that not getting a million dollar pay day because of her skin color is absolutely ridiculous and ludicrous.  On other hand Viola Davis can go into new contracts with this argument and is more than likely to get what she is asking or they are willing to come to a compromise.  First thing Mo’Nique wants to do is start with the bad behavior that originally got her blackballed.

When I first heard that she was calling for a boycott against Netflix — at first I was all for joining in and supporting her, but then I had to stop and think, “why is she  calling for a boycott against Netflix?”  My daughter first brought it to my attention that they had even offered her a contract some time ago.  I had already thought it was great that she was back to working because I recall when she blackballed.  But now I am hearing that she is back to her old antics, and for the life of me I cannot understand why thinking telling someone “suck my d***,” is going to get you somewhere.  In fact I cannot understand why successful black women in comedy even go the vulgar route in their comedic acts.  It’s not really necessary.

Mo’Nique went on The Breakfast Club Rewind to address being called the “Donkey of the Day.”  The point that was trying to be made is understanding — with the gap in her career and insisting on this being racially motivated — why she felt she was deserving to make 13 million dollars.  I watched almost 30 minutes of the video and she still did not address where she has been all that time to explain the gap in her career, and yet she has the audacity to want to argue her worth after having not been around all that time.  Frankly, as much as I have liked her in the past, she has not warranted the right to come back acting in this manner trying to compare herself to those who have not been blackballed in their career at no point in time.

Do I disagree with labeling it as “Donkey of the Day?”  I think it could have been a lot worse.  It just so happened to have been that way in order to understand the logistics of the situation.  Just something to think about.

In short, until Mo’Nique can be honest with herself about the big gap in her career and  why she can’t get the million dollar pay day, and learn to play by the rules her career is going to continue to struggle.  I would hate to see her fall from grace again before she can even get to a level where she can say her career is thriving again and learn not to be disrespectful to her supporting cast.  Before her career can even thrive again, she probably needs to be a supporting cast member and see how it feels to be on the other side of the spectrum.

Relationships: Dating After Being Widowed and the Guys Who Flake On You

Being a widowed woman is already hard enough in itself, so it’s no wonder that when a woman who has been widowed decides to get back into the dating scene finds herself being the little fish in a big ocean exploring the world of dating.  When she’s been with her spouse or significant other for several years and he passes away it leaves her in a state of wonderment.  Asking herself questions like, “where do I go from here?” “When do I start dating again?” “Do I want to start dating again?” — AND — “What kind of man am I looking for?” “Do I want to get into another relationship?”  I heard it best said, “give yourself six months and then see how you feel about dating again.  There’s nothing worse than a horrible rebound.”

Coming from a widow’s perspective (i.e, me) I found that guys who learn a woman has been widowed likes to play on their emotions.  So not cool.  Tells them everything they want to hear, makes them feel alive again, makes them feel wanted only to find out that she was merely being used for his amusement.  They stop messaging, texting or calling, don’t answer messages or text messages, they don’t answer calls, and it makes some widowed women feel rejected.  Widowed and now rejected by some guy she hardly knows, barely even met, or has not met yet.  It’s a vicious case that a widowed woman has to go through, but why should that be the case?  If s man’s sole intent was to play on a widowed woman’s emotions why waste the the time and energy if he had no intentions in getting involved with her on a serious level?  It’s one of the reasons some widowed women do not want to return to the dating scene.

Come on fellas…just because a woman is widowed does not mean she is desperately looking for love in all the wrong places, nor is she looking for a quick trip back to the alter.  Life has to start making since to her after first becoming a widow.  The dating scene is new to her after being with one person for so many years.

fb_icon_325x325Online dating via social media is continuously proving itself to be a joke.  Have you seen the singles pages on Facebook?  It solidifies reasons for wanting to stay away from those pages that deliver nothing but individuals who are simply looking for a booty call or a quick trip to the alter, or just someone to “play with” over a period of time then dump them and move on to the next candidate.  Taking it slow to getting to know someone is not always an option because if you are not going to “give it up” right away the woman is the one with the problems and he is more than likely to move on to someone who is looking more of a physical relationship than a meaningful, wholesome relationship.

Image from Facebook.com

The guys who go to set up dates with widowed women and then flake out on the dates without words notice by refusing to confirm by responding to messages, or blatantly ignores calls, texts, and messages has to understand that if that woman is a strong willed and strong minded individual, he has already become an after thought in her mind and life for her continues to keep it moving from his existence.

It’s a new playing field for a woman who has been widowed.  Some women can jump right back into it with no problems without skipping a beat while others have to take baby steps, tread with caution.  They evaluate the dating scene with a fine tooth comb, screening every man that comes across their path who shows an interest in them.  It’s nothing like what we see on television…the “Happily Ever After” because dating is not like that.  When you’ve loved only one person you swear on the holy bible that there is no one else for you.  And it’s nerve wracking when a women finds someone she thinks she really likes after having talked with him online for weeks only to have him suddenly fall off the radar.  That can only mean one or two things:  (1) He was never that into you, or (2) He found someone else he could get with pretty quickly than she was willing to.

What happened to men and women meeting each other the old fashioned way?  In today’s society social media and online dating sites have fueled society with platforms on how to meet people and you never really know if the person you are meeting is who they say they are and is the person you want to see on a long term basis.  I’m sorry but commercials are just that…commercials.  There needs to be someone going behind the scenes getting the truth to these dating sites and what real experiences people have gone through.

As widowed women trying to avoid the psychos is like pulling a needle out of a haystack.  And what I want to say to all the women out there who have been widowed whether for a few short months, six months, a year, or for several years life does not end there.  If you are in the market for a new man in your life know your worth.  Put your deal breakers on the table.  A man is either going to respect you or keep it moving.  If he is not willing to take it slow to get to know him, what he’s about, what his tolerances are, and he gets to know you and what you are all about, he’s not the one for you.  This is just my opinion.

The Weekend Follow Up: Philadelphia Eagles Take Home the Champion in Super Bowl LII

Super_Bowl_LII_logoIf you tuned in to Super Bowl LII amongst billions across the nation, you witnessed a closely played game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots.  The defeat in the game resulting in a 41 – 33 upset in favor of Philadelphia shows how well the team played with Doug Pederson and Nick Foles doing their job to bring the championship to Philadelphia.

Photo from NFL.com specifically for writing The Weekend Follow Up.

It was not until after Nick Foles was named MVP that the coach, Bill Belichick spoke to reporters on how awful the team played that cost them the championship.  Wait a minute!!! What happened to true sportsmanship, lifting the team up in how well they played despite losing the Super Bowl?  It was obvious Coach Belichick was beyond upset with the team, however he showed no remorse in how poorly he felt they played.  They didn’t run defense, didn’t run plays, or something to that affect.

Regardless of the defeat, it was a closely played game which I thought the Patriots were fighting for that victory to have played that game that close.  Well done New England Patriots, but the championship goes to Philadelphia Eagles.

How does Tom Brady feel about the loss?  Not sure, but there were a lot of Philadelphia Eagles fans or football fans who sided with Philadelphia winning who have said, “Brady does not need anymore rings!”  It doesn’t matter one way or the other.  We still have to give the Patriots credit for their efforts.

Commentary: Trump’s First State of the Union Address

At the start of this administration I was not impressed with how he has gone into this administration.  The first State of the Union Address left no hope for the fate of Americans.  It seeks to divide this great nation not representing the people as a whole.  His words do not match his actions because they do not speak to the value of American homes.  And the supporters live and breathe, and hang off the valance of every word he speaks.  But what they fail to realize is that everything he says is contradictory and only those who pay close attention will tell you that his words do not match his actions.  So what do you do?  It has been said by many that they would rather move to another country than to live in the United States under his presidency.  I admit, I have said that, too, but what are you really solving?

If it’s never been such an eye-opening moment than sitting and watching the President deliver an address that had more untrue facts, and the Republicans standing and applauding each time he completed a statement.   It was not even a full on deliverable speech that did not sound ad libbed.  And the Republicans were obviously on the same page of wrong information as the President because they took it all at face value.  What would we have expected, though?

I found it to be in poor taste that Speaker Paul Ryan sat behind the President with this grin on his face the time, sitting proudly supporting a President who has been nothing but contradictory from day one — treating the presidency as a business transaction than actually running the country.

When you think about the role of this leadership there needs to be representation of truth to the cause of what a president is suppose to believe in and what he stand and fights for, and delivers what he says he is going to do with truth and validity, keeping families together whether American born or immigrants, and fighting to keep America great. And where he spoke of unity, that is not what he has represented throughout this term.  And if this is his idea of what unity is supposed to be, he surely needs a lesson in what it means.

The President has failed to speak to the equality of every man and woman of all races and culture, religions and creed, and has not proven himself to honest of the state of today’s economy and his tax reforms (i.e., the truth in who they benefits).  There needs to be positive diversity in togetherness where hate crimes have sky-rocketed.  Jobs need  to be visually created in under served communities, tuition needs to be greatly reduced to even children in poor families can afford to attend (i.e., the No Child Left Behind act).  Healthcare needs to come off the chopping block and be continue to be affordable to those who cannot otherwise afford high premium costs.

The President spoke of auto manufactures bringing jobs back to Michigan from Mexico — this is an “I’ll believe it when I see it happen.” Let’s remember that Trump made promises to steel works in Philadelphia that he did not make good on, therefore the company is laying off 150 of the 207 employees starting from their junior employees going as far deep as those who have been working for the company over 20 years.  Simply because Trump did not live up to what he said he was going to do.  How is this any different than promising jobs going to Michigan and to build up Detroit when he did not even keep his promise to those workers?

Let’s move on.  He talked about the energy wars during his address:

“We have ended the war on American energy — and we have ended the war on beautiful, clean coal,” he said. “We are now very proudly an exporter of energy to the world.”

If my memory serves me correctly, during Obama’s administration there were no such wars.  So, where did he get that information?  Did he dream about it and woke up actually believing they happened?

Exporting coal, natural gases, oil, and energy technologies has been something the United States has done for decades.  Therefore, this is nothing new and to hear it said as if this is the first time under his presidency that it’s been done just makes him sound oblivious of the history of the United States and what has been doing for years.  In fact, according to Vox.com the United States is on track for being the net energy exporter.  Had the President done his homework he would have already known that.

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Chart from Vox.com

These are just some of the things where the President did not have his facts straight.  As the address went on he spoke of the VISA lottery.  He stated, “The third pillar ends the visa lottery — a program that randomly hands out green cards without any regard for skill, merit, or the safety of American people.” Once again he failed to properly exploain the process and how immigrants must be vetted.  I did a little research on this issue to get some clear information as to what the screening process includes and what potential immigrants must go through when coming into the United States.

Immigrants must meet certain education and work criteria, let’s be clear on this.  The President nowhere in his speech mentioned this policy.

Applicants must meet education or work experience criteria

The visa lottery program was established in 1990 to diversify the United States’ immigrant population. The lottery began in 1995 and selects applicants from countries with low immigration levels during the previous five years. Diversity visas are currently capped at 50,000 per fiscal year.

It’s worth noting that entries chosen in the lottery do not automatically get a visa, they only become eligible to apply for it.

Applicants must meet education or work experience requirements, according to the U.S. State Department and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services:

•   At least a high school education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of formal elementary and secondary education; or

•   Two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience to perform.

Potential immigrants must undergo vetting by U.S. government

Visa lottery applicants can include a spouse and children in their application. While only the applicant has to meet the education and work requirement, all potential travelers must be thoroughly vetted by the United States.

Applicants who pass a vetting process are awarded the diversity visa.

Information reviewed in the vetting process includes passport, police and medical records, photographs, English translations of documents, and education or work experience credentials.

Source:  Polifact.com

These are facts that the Americans should know if they do not already know and, would have been worth mentioning as trust properly characterized facts.  Another thing, too, we want to also look at is the fact that the President has children born to immigrants.  Has he threatened to have them deported?  Think about it. Four of the five of his children were born to immigrant mothers.  Are the subjected to deportation under his immigrant reform?

To deport people who have paid their dues to society, and who have come here under the legal immigrant application screening process, and who have met all of the criteria because they are immigrants and have deemed criminals and terrorists is wrong, unethical, immoral, cruel, and without compassion, thus leaving a dark cloud over the true meaning of “The American Dream.”  True there are immigrants in the United States who are here illegally, have committed crimes, have threatened the national security of the country…they are the ones he should be targeting.  Talk about make our boarders safer by building this wall he is going to make tax payers pay for, he should create legislation that protects again illegal immigrants who are here and are not contributing to society.  And if they are here illegally outside of being identified as criminals or just here eating off the fat of the land, it should be determined if they should rightfully stay or be made to leave based on viable information based on their day to day activities, their family status, and their ability to meet work and educational criteria.

We are being lead down the road of no return under this administration.  Families are in danger.  Women’s rights are in danger.  Immigrants who fight to live the American dream are in danger.  And it just goes to show that if this is the kind of addresses we can expect from a President who does not stand up and deliver what he says he is going to and his actions continue to not match his words, we are in trouble, and we will truly be a country divided.  Joe Kennedy, III is a promising political leader.  In his response at the conclusion of the address he spoke of compassion, he spoke of keeping families together, the people as a whole.  He is one we should watch and should be considered as Presidential material. He is an idealist that shows hope for the true American way, and strength to speak out against the views and non-values of the President.

~I am neither Democratic or Republican.  I write from an opinionated perspective.~

 

The Weekend Follow Up: The Upcoming State of the Union Address

It’s been going around Social Media that we as a nation should not watch Trump’s State of the Union Address.  As someone who has been neutral throughout his entire presidency, I have been inclined to keep my opinions to myself because I have not been neither for the Republicans or the Democrats.  This is due to the fact that I have been confused about the way things have played out since Obama’s reign on the White House which left a major impact on this nation which the Republicans have had a hard time facing defeat.

I have listened to what consumers have had to say about this presidency and how — on both sides of the spectrum — has hurt and helped the economy, but all I have seen is how each issue has been handled like a business deal not working in the best interest of the people as a whole.  There have been more hate crimes than ever, and people are seeming to think it’s OK under Trump’s administration to step up their racism.  Why?  Because Trump has not said to the latter that it is wrong to discriminate.

I am curious as to what the State of the Union Address will bring forth.  What his speech will entail and who it will put down and degrade.  Because it seems that from videos I have seen and talks he has given has not been in a positive nature for people as a whole. To say the least, he is moving this nation 100 or more backwards.  Women’s rights are threatened even more.  Affordable healthcare is continuously on the chopping block.  Do people really realize how affordable healthcare has helped?  I bet you some of the Republican families have benefited from it — they will never tell you that, though because it was developed under Obama’s administration.

A lot of people talk about impeaching Trump.  Some talk about how he should just resign.  Think about it for a moment.  What has he done in this term to help lower class men and women who work for a living?  What has he done for communities who are struggling to survive?  How is he helping schools?  How is he going to make healthcare better for people who can’t afford to pay $450 a month out of pocket for medical insurance?  Why is he cutting or trying to eliminate government assistance (i.e., food stamps, welfare programs that help families who for other reasons cannot work).  These are the things we have to look at…really focus our attention on because the Republicans are strictly looking at how they can line their pockets by taking away from the poor and giving to the rich.  Like Robin Hood, except in reverse.

2018 State of the Union Address will be at 6:00 PM on TuesdayJanuary 30.  All times are in Pacific Time.  Check your local listings for actual time and where to watch.

I will be watching the State of the Union Address.  And I will be reporting back with my thoughts and views.

Business: Excellent Customer Service and Why so Many Fall Short

customer-service.0822.12-300x213Everyone of us in the working world engages in some form of customer service whether we want to believe it or not.  And if your job is 100% customer service based, there is no doubt that no matter how good you are in working to meet the customer’s expectations in how well you deliver the service you are paid to deliver, at some point you are likely to experience those customers who just choose to be difficult.  It’s like they wake up in the morning ready to be combative with whomever they come in contact with.   Image from Forbes.com.  

What if customer service is not your forte?  There are many representatives who find themselves on the other end of the spectrum where the customer feels they have not received the best customer service they should have received, which can cover many factors such as personality, attitude, neglect to help resolve the issue, inability to show care and consideration to the reason the customer is seeking information.

In the article, 5 Ways To Improve Your Customer Service discusses the many ways companies can improve their customer service.  Even the best representatives still need refreshers on what they need to know and what they can do to ensure the quality of the customer service they provide and to reiterate that age old phrase, “the customer is always right” even if they are dead wrong.

It also goes without saying that the company you work has to do their due diligence to make sure their customer service team is knowledgeable of all of the services and products provided in order to know how to handle issues and answer questions as they arise.  They have to know how to handle customers of all types and in all matters without letting their personal feelings show.  I know, this can be challenging, but keeping your cool says a lot about you and it makes the customer want to come back and talk to you on a whole different playing field; because you shut it down reminding the customer that you are there to help them rather than argue with them.

Customer service takes a back seat when companies fail to reprimand their representatives who for the lack of better judgement treat customers with less than satisfactory service.  If they are not going above and beyond to help, by all means ask if someone else can help them.  At the same time, companies also take a back seat to recognizing and rewarding those who provide stellar customer service.  This can also cause a decrease in morale in that department.  Did you know rewarded customer service keeps it at high level, thus increasing customer retention? It keeps the team happy.

I think, too, sometimes we forget what our primary job is when working in customer service based jobs, and working in jobs where from time to time we have to talk to or meet customers.  Greet them with smile, maintain eye contact, listen to their issues and concerns, don’t interrupt, be mindful of what they are talking about and see what you can do to assist them.  When you’re on the phone, be pleasant at all times, ask how you can be of assistance to them, let them explain why they are calling, politely calm them down if they express their anger and frustration, listen to what they are saying, do not interrupt, find workable solutions, but do not engage in arguments, or unbecoming behavior of a customer.  If a representative finds that no matter the number of attempts given to help customer, they should be courteous and ask if they would like to speak to someone else or a supervisor who can better assist them.  It’s the logical thing to do.  Always say thank you, always ask if there is anything more you can do for them, thank them for calling and for being a valuable customer.

In my 31 years in the workforce, customer service began as a crash course for me.  So, it’s safe to say that I have learned over the years its true value and why customers rely on it so much the customer service department is their go-to resource when they need questions answered, or they have an issue to be resolved.

Excellent customer service is not something you are born with or taught.  It is something we learn in our roles in performing the duties of our job while maintaining the integrity of the company.  If you can’t learn what it takes to provide excellent customer service to a customer, then perhaps  you should rethink your goals in life.

~~ Remember, the customer is always right.