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Old 11-13-2010, 10:48 PM
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HOW to approach reps at the stores

In the past, I've always heard about how people wonder the best methods to get a hold of the right rep, the right people, and get what you want from your local carrier & service. Here are some quick tips that are likely to work at MOST standard carrier services (as in Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile and AT&T) when you want something, organized by topic.

Some Notes

There are three types of stores for most carriers, these are Corporate Stores, premium retailers, and affiliate retailers.

Corporate Stores are stores that are run by, managed by, and answer to the Corporation directly. As a result they often have more resources to give to the customer and are able to act on orders from telesales/customer service phone reps. They are forced to abide by corporate rates & promotions

Premium Retailers are privately owned stores but have to at times comply and work with Corporate to some extent, but they mainly do their own thing and make their own policies and processes. They can however do Corporate promotions and discounts at some times

Affiliate Retailers are privately owned stores and corporations that are allowed to do sales and promotions at whatever extent they wish, so long as it gets approval where necessary. They carry the Sprint name but are not entitled to Corporate rates, discounts, or events.

If you want help

First off, unless you're looking to make a purchase, do not go to a affiliate retailer. Affiliate retailers can rarely assist with repairs, tech support, or customer service, and they often don't want to because it's not profitable to give free help that comes with service, not phones for sale. If you have a service plan through Bestbuy or another affiliate retailer that offers insurance or repairs, then disregard this and go to them first before seeking carrier-specific service. You should also try to avoid premium retailers as they too are not as effective at customer service and repair compared to the Corporate Store

Second, call customer service.

For some reason, people hate customer service, but there is no need to. Though at times, CS can be irritable, troublesome, or worse, just remember these few tips to get yourself out of the "CS circle of death."

1. Skip the touch-tone system. Press 0 or say "agent" as soon as possible.

2. Once you get the CS Rep, no matter how things went before, be nice and kind to them. Though they don't know much and are the "Step 1" reps, they get you in the right direction to the people you need for your solution. If they seem upset off the bat, or that they will give you a hard time, just pretend your call was dropped, hang up, and start over. You will only go in circles getting the person you want, because If you are a constant trouble maker, your account will be flagged and it will be a nightmare to get work done

3. If you want accounting or billing issues, they'll typically take care of the minor issues right off the bat. Remember they typically won't know who you are and you'll need to give them your account information to be taken care of. Most people, until you're transferred a step or two higher, cannot give you compensation or approval for certain account changes. Once you get a higher level rep, you can start to persuade them for what you want.

4. For tech support, usually the tier is much more clear. If the tech guy you are transferred to cannot find documents to solve it, and you do everything they ask or have done everything they can think of, they'll transfer you up a step. DO NOT argue against what they request you to do, unless you have already done it or proven it won't change a thing, otherwise you'll try their patience. Besides, they have to follow a checklist to get things done, all you can do is speed this checklist up by helping them with this.

5. If you are looking for a replacement phone, always call tech support before going to a Corporate Store. Help them with diagnosing their phone, and if you get to the point to convince them to get you a replacement, they will likely put a note in your account to go to a store to finalize the replacement, and very rarely may do it yourself. If you need to go to the store, remember to be courteous, but also remember the initial people you talk to are going to try to thwart you from your goal, so if you have to, get a supervisor or Manager to get you what your want.

6. As mentioned below, though techs have to follow protocol, they are tech afterall and can make the process good or bad for you. But on the flipside a poor tech experience can be averted by Manager/Supervisor intervention, or used to your advantage afterward.

(For example, I once brought into a phone for a routine upgrade that took an hour longer than expected, and actually removed all our contacts on my phone rather restoring. As a result we walked out with a sincere apology, and a credit to our account. I didn't mention I keep manual backups at home)

Tips:

Do not always think you'll get what you want once the manager word has been called out! Managers are there to settle things, and actually have their own Managers to ensure they cannot give everything you may or may not. As a result its a shot in the dark to get a manager as it may backfire and seal your fate, preventing your chance of getting what you want ever. However, if you get an employee full of excuses, or trying to prevent you from getting what you want (because it wont make him money or waste his time) then use a Manager to your advantage, and use the employee's irritability to complain about service. This in turn will force the Manager to want to help you, as mentioning the experience to Corporate, with a Corporate Store, can cause a negative impact on the Manager's career and entice them to give you what you want

All of the Carriers have "executive customer relations" at the tippy top of the ladder. These people are hired at the Corporate level to serve as problem solvers and are given much more resources and power to solve issues than any Corporate affiliate. However, you CANNOT call them for everyday incidents, and they must be contacted if you have had issues with Corporate Stores prior and are willing to threaten your continuation of business with the carrier. It's last ditch effort and will not always work or end as you want.

If you want a replacement device, as in a new phone type all together, you used to get a 3 strikes rule, which would give you three devices then replace your phone type all together. However this is not the case anymore, and it's much tougher to get this done. Still try to follow the three strikes protocol, and eventually work your way around the managers (and possibly Customer Relations) to get what you want. It's always a risk though.

The greatest thing you can risk with the carrier is your continuation of service. If you are enough of an asset to them, they will do all in their power to ensure you remain, especially if they think you are tempted to leave. As a result you can use this as a powerful angle to get your way in certain strongarming situations. Meanwhile, if it backfires you will lose almost all your chances at pulling a strongarm against them in the future. Because of this, only use it if you think you are worth enough to your carrier (don't roam a lot, have smartphones, spend a lot of money) to take the chances of going through with this technique.

Last edited by Laos101; 11-14-2010 at 12:49 AM.
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Old 11-13-2010, 11:01 PM
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Being a tech for sprint here are my suggestions.

Dont lie, be upfront.

Be friendly and crack a joke about your situtation without swearing.

Use proper english. If you ever "axe" me a question, your contacts may become corrupt.

And most importany, dont tell me how to do my job. EVER
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Old 11-13-2010, 11:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akmzero View Post

Use proper english. If you ever "axe" me a question, your contacts may become corrupt.

And most importany, dont tell me how to do my job. EVER
Imo, not to try an call you out, but this is exactly the type of attitude, rep, you wanna stay away from!! Someone that will corrupt your contacts because they didn't like something you said or tried to "under mind"their knowledge.

Although no 1 likes others to tell them how to do their job, you never, I mean NEVER, mess up their phone/plan/contacts! You smile and bite your tongue, you need to find a different job buddy, where you don't deal with people

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Last edited by eenieMINI; 11-14-2010 at 12:27 AM. Reason: No fair tricking the foul sensors. :P
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Old 11-14-2010, 12:49 AM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

Keep em' coming and take advantage of the ones i listed above.
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Old 11-14-2010, 01:24 AM
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I Love my job man. I love working with people. The ones im talking about are the ones who come in and start off the conversation "heres what your going to do" or walk up to you, shove the phone in your face and say its broken. When you ask whats wrong they simply say "ugh, the same thing as last time" I usualy provide less than stellar service.
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Old 11-14-2010, 11:06 AM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

I have to say I kinda agree with akmzero. I have done tech support work in the past, and I used to hate customers like that. When I first moved into IS/IT, I had to work on the "Help Desk", which was a call center for our company that solved computer problems. We supported about 20K users in our company. I always hated when arrogant sales people or Executives would call and try to tell me what I was going to do for them. I would do the bare minimum that was needed to get the douche off the phone.
Now, granted that was only about 1 or 2 percent of the calls, and the rest were always nice friendly people. Whenever a nice friendly person would call, I would do whatever I possibly could to help.

Its like the old saying goes, "You catch more flies with sugar than you do vinegar".

And speaking of the folks that would "axe" you a question, all of our calls were recorded on the help desk, and whenever we had someone call in and speak with stupid ghetto slang or try to "out-tech" us, we would download our CallCopy and post it to a network share we had setup on our san. We would then email the other help desk peeps to share the goodness. LOL.
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Old 11-14-2010, 11:19 AM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

Quote:
Originally Posted by BooDaddy View Post
And speaking of the folks that would "axe" you a question, all of our calls were recorded on the help desk, and whenever we had someone call in and speak with stupid ghetto slang or try to "out-tech" us, we would download our CallCopy and post it to a network share we had setup on our san. We would then email the other help desk peeps to share the goodness. LOL.
classic! i wish we had something like at tha call center i work in
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Old 11-14-2010, 02:54 PM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

Yeah it really depends. You have the people who call up the tech support and actually know what they're talking about (like me,) the other day i called up about my EVO and after getting to the top tier techie, she told me word for word "You sound like you know what you're doing so i'll just let you go to the store and get you a ticket"

then you have the other jackasses who pretend they know what they're doing and dont explain to the tech the basics (such as explaining you already hard reset. tried diff phones and such)

That ticket is how I got my replacement phone to come tuesday and not thursday next week.
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Old 11-14-2010, 03:20 PM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

in my 6 years of managing cellular stores, sprint and verizon, i've never purposely hurt a customers feelings, deleted contacts or done anything close. I don't believe that's the way to be if ya ask me. My customers love me!
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Old 11-14-2010, 05:21 PM
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Re: HOW to approach reps at the stores

Quote:
Originally Posted by Courtney1985 View Post
in my 6 years of managing cellular stores, sprint and verizon, i've never purposely hurt a customers feelings, deleted contacts or done anything close. I don't believe that's the way to be if ya ask me. My customers love me!
THANKED it doesnt matter how right you are or how wrong they are, it comes w/ the job
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