Cardinal Sins of Customer Service – Thanks BT

BTCustomer Service

Ultimately this is how we small businesses differentiate ourselves from the big boys, right?

So, when the big boys give us small businesses bad service we take it personally. Not as a slight on our person, but that because we try so hard it is ever more difficult to accept.

When customer service means losing your evening, cancelling that social during the day, or doing something that is both inconvenient and unpaid, then we do it. Not because any of us are mugs, but because customer service is paramount.

So what has happened BT?

CombinateI picked up this blog article from James Routs of Combinate Marketing.

Let me give you some figures here, then see if it grabs your attention. This is all based on James’s own experience;

  • 1- Number of times BT failed to turned up to install their services
  • 1- Number of times BT turned up out of the blue to install their services, and yes we were out
  • 2- The number of calls I have had from BT this week wanting to arrange installation despite me cancelling two weeks ago
  • 7- The days I was left without phone or brand band coverage, (have you tried living without broadband these days!!) fortunately Virgin came to the rescue and managed to re-install within hours
  • 9 – The hours of my life wasted on the phone to BT so far
  • 25 – The number of people I have spoken to at BT with no-one taking ownership
  • 16000 – A guestimate on the miles I have travelled on phone call transfers
  • 100,000,000 – The number of pounds BT have put aside to promote its new sports channel as reported in Media Week 10th May
  • 141 – The pounds BT still owe me as a refund (as of 4th Sept)

Now, take this series of events and apply it to the small business. Answer is;

You do this = No business left

Have a read of the full blog post here, it is well worth reading.


There are plenty of alternatives to BT. Have a look at my friend at Cervantes Telecom they offer a real alternative, and the service is great too!

I hope you enjoyed this blog post. It certainly made me smile as I read it (sorry James) but the underlying customer service story is really telling.

If you enjoyed the post please add your comments using the ‘reply’ button, or give us a call on 01293 541333 or contact us here.

By David Farmer

2 thoughts on “Cardinal Sins of Customer Service – Thanks BT

  • I think we have all experienced a problem with BT and their so called ‘customer service’ at some point. I have had a client who has had to change their telephone number due to a problem caused by BT of which they could not resolve and they simply couldn’t resurrect the number they had been using for the past 8 years!

    I have also recently experienced a BT engineer failing to turn up to install a new super fast broadband service at 10am as arranged….he finally called at 6pm to say he had been delayed and turned up at 6.30pm explaining that the cock up was at head office and he wasn’t due til 6pm.

    Suffice to say, any small business who ran their operation like this would very quickly go out of business, unless you came up with a free football service and tied your customers to a new contract if you agree to use such a service. All bases covered!

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