Talk about connecting with customers (and the long reach of one little blog post)!
Last week I got a phone call from Sheila Smith, Consumer Services Manager for Lifetime Brands. She was following up on my post, "An E-Mail Question So Fraught, the Company Couldn't Bear To Answer It," in which I wondered about, and grumbled about, Mikasa's non-answer to my simple customer service e-mail question. I'd written to ask Mikasa to suggest a set of small plates that would match larger plates in the Sedona pattern. Mikasa (a division of Lifetime) sent the following answer: "We are hesitant to recommend patterns that compliment [sic]. Tastes vary so much that we do not like to make these type [sic] of recommendations."
Sheila apologized for the unhelpful response I received. She explained that "in their role as experts on our products, Mikasa agents in fact do make that type of recommendation via e-mail all the time." They are trained to and encouraged to make recommendations. Sheila wanted to be sure I understood that a non-answer was far from Mikasa's standard for performance and that the company was very sorry I had received poor service.
Then came the kicker. I asked Sheila about which small plates she'd recommend to match the large plates in the Sedona pattern. Her answer: "We just don't have any plates that match."
So, in one way, I am a happy customer now. Mikasa values my business and opinion so much that the Consumer Services Manager called me personally to follow up. But I am still plate-less. Writing Matters readers, can you help?
— Leslie O'Flahavan