CHAPTER 1

Why Good Service Might Not Result in a Great Experience

My wife bought me a high-end brand-name surround sound system for my birthday. Recently, the four external speakers stopped working. After much fiddling, using the poorly written manual as a guide, I called the manufacturer’s 800 number, navigated the phone menus as best I could, and waited 20 minutes before giving up. Two days later, I tried again, and again gave up on a long queue. Finally, I arranged for the local retailer to repair the system onsite. The technician was equally stumped and called the manufacturer, only to learn that the unit needed to be sent in for repair. Many weeks later, the company returned my system. The manufacturer’s support center most likely recorded ...

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