Wednesday, August 03, 2005

How to destroy Customer Relationships the Volvo Way

I own a late 90s Volvo. I love it and drive it everywhere. As result I have 95K+ miles on it and it's beginning to show its age a little. I never spent the time to find and cultivate a good Volvo mechanic that I could trust to do the right repairs well, so when things go wrong I bring it to my local Volvo Dealership which, in my case, is The Long Motor Company's Volvo of Edison.

I know I'm spending too much on repairs by brining it to the dealership and I know I should know better, but I always felt a little better knowing that at least the job was being done right. Now I'm not so sure...And it's not because I found anything wrong with my brakes--Yet!

It's the little things that are shaking my confidence in the service folks at this dealership. For instance, I got the car back after $600+ brake job (I know, I know, I'm looking for a good mechanic, write me if you know of one) and found:
  • My dashboard marred by pen mark that I still can't remove
  • My cup holder opened -- I don't drink in my car, why should my mechanic!
  • The car newly washed but they missed both doors on the passenger side -- Yes, the front and rear fender are clean, but neither door is.
I know that each individual thing is small and should almost pass without comment, but taken together it gets one to thinking if they are that careless with simple things, how much attention are they paying to my brakes!

It goes back to my pet peeve of employees just going through the motions rather than really caring about the customer. If they are going to do a lousy job washing the car, I'd rather that they leave it dirty! Now I have to get it washed; it looks silly. Before it just looked normal. Dirty, but normal.

I called the service manager, he said to bring back in. Didn't say he was sorry; said he wanted to check on it. So now I have to trek to this dealership again??? I said it was the closest, but it's not actually close to me, ya know.