Thursday, December 4, 2008

Completely utterly disregard scheduled appointments

One great submitter forwarded me an excerpt from a district manager's email.

"1. We take walk-ins AHEAD of Scheduled appointments. Often the scheduled appointment does not show up on time. It only takes you 15 minutes to take pictures. That is perfect if the walkin comes in 10 minutes before the appointment.
If the walkin arrives at the same time as the appointment, you still need to take them first. Theoretically, the walkin will wait 5 minutes before giving up and going somewhere else. That is losing potential sales!"


Anonymous said...

But what about losing the business of the appointment holder? All I know is, if someone walked in and my appointment got pushed back because of it, I'm going somewhere else too. Whereas I've had plenty of people walk in who didn't have a problem waiting, since they understood there was an appointment.

This company is backwards.

Anonymous said...

This is nuts! The company cares nothing for customer service or fairness. Plus, taking pictures may only take 15 minutes, but everything else takes up much more time, and most often there is not enough coverage. The appointment will end up waiting much longer than 15 minutes.

Anonymous said...

Studio staff is expected to work like dogs, miss breaks, stay late and skip lunch to accomodate someone who couldn't even pick up the phone to call ahead. And it's not like 1888PORTRAIT isn't going to give them any time they ask for-even if it's already booked, or past closing time.

Anonymous said...

Arrrgh!!! It gets worse, though. I had a customer come in an HOUR before their appointment time today and demand to be taken in, even though there were three sittings ahead of her. On top of all of this, there was a walk-in waiting who could have been taken in a timely manner if this rude, early customer hadn't made such a stink.
I hate that customers complain about not having their appointments honored but show such disregard for the appointments of others!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh so get this! Tonight we had a 7:00 appointment that somehow managed to stay until after 8:00....when it came time to pay they suddenly realized they left their credit card at home (20 minutes away). The associate explained to the customer that we technically closed at 8:00 so they would have to return tomorrow to finish the order and pay. These people had the nerve to say "No we are going to go home and get the credit card right now" When she told them they could call back in with the number they demanded that she stay because they were going to come back to pay (even though Sears closes at 9 and it would be impossible for them to make it back in time). Who do these people think they are? Demanding that an employee stay over an hour past closing because they can't be bothered to come back the next day? I would LOVE to find where they work and show up and try that crap on them!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I am a loyal customer and never make appointments.I used to wait longer for my appointments than when I just walked in.All I have to do when they are busy is just keep asking "How much longer?"

Anonymous said...

To the commenter above with the credit card story- did the associate stay late?

Anonymous said...

As a customer, I don't mind waiting a few minutes for quality pictures. However, I just found out that all of the pictures from my sitting were accidentally overexposed. So after 2 hours and wrestling with 3 young children, choosing pose 19 (so you know how difficult it was) ... and now I won't have the Christmas cards I ordered on time. As a 'sorry' the studio is offering to redo the sitting (another 2 hours of my life) and giving me 2 free portrait sheets. Big deal. A $6 value for 4 hours of my life. Sears Portrait Studio sucks.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the situation with Christmas cards...alot of studios are unaware that greeting cards can be printed on site using the composite template. Simply change the format to 2 up- it's a little tedious to cut, but it can be done. Also, studios are always sent an extra supply of envelopes.

Anonymous said...

Dear Loyal Customer:
What's wrong with you? Do you have any idea how stressful it is for studio staff to have to listen to someone continually ask "how much longer?". Most studios will take appts. ahead of walk-ins, despite the what the DM mentioned above said. Also, any child who has been waiting more than 10 minutes is not going be as easy to work with. Duh. And just so you know, studios are pretty much ready to photograph holiday portraits in September.

Anonymous said...

"Regarding the situation with Christmas cards... it's a little tedious to cut, but it can be done. "

Sure. When you're understaffed, 30 minutes behind scheduled appointment times, dealing with order delivery issues, and being screamed at because the customer is furious there is a per-sheet onsite fee, no problem. Haul out the paper cutter and get to work on that 100 card order. It's just "a little tedious."

To Overexposed:
If you're so unhappy with the service, go elsewhere. I'm sure when you realize that professional photographers start at $50/hr just for their time, and will charge way more than $6 per letter size sheet, you'll be more than happy to come back.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious about how the pictures could be "over-exposed". Since SPS is digital, the exposure quality should be able to be adjusted-- unless for some reason the flash bulb was out or something--which has happened before, but the associate definitely should have been able to tell during the session. As for the Xmas cards not being in on time, I believe those take longer to print, so the deadline is probably coming soon. If I were you, in lieu of the free session and 2 sheets, I would ask the studio manager if you can get a CD of the session. Perhaps some of the shots are fixable. Did you speak to the studio manager already? I find it hard to believe that all the pictures were bad. If you got the CD, you'd own the rights so you could take the picture to somewhere that they can be printed faster.

Anonymous said...

"To the commenter above with the credit card story- did the associate stay late?"

Yes she did stay late...didn't get out of there until almost 9:30 when Sears mangaers were screaming at her for being so late

Anonymous said...

In a perfect world.. a shoot takes 15 minutes. Then que the 2 year old who moves when you place her down and as soon as you are behind the camera and get things focused (I wish for one touch focus) the kid moves! Or you take an honest to goodness great photo..and try to move onto another shows the body language that she just doesn't like the smile of her 7 year old.

Or MOM and DAD blinks! Or Grandma is too busy being a sour puss to look at the camera.

Or "I look sooo fat"..well, maybe cause you are!

I had a customer who had to wait 20 minutes past her appointment time with a 10, 12 and 15 year old. She was being a complete b*&^h in the waiting room..asking everyone when their appt times were.. and how long the wait is. So there I with a session and b*&^h mom pokes her head in and goes.."How much longer? I need to be at a wedding in 30 minutes!" 1. WHY would you schedule a photo session 4 weeks before Christmas on a day of a wedding?..2...Would YOU like it if someone came into YOUR session and rushed you? 3. Shut the F*&k up! LOL!!!

So I got my standard 6 poses..with out seeming to rush the folks who waited 30 minutes Patiently and nicely and asked.."is there anything else I can do for you today?"..they will come back on a less busy day to get the naked pics of our son..thanks for your hard work." I then took in b*&^h mom and her 3 seemingly well behaved older children..WRONG!

2 year olds act much better!

15 year old refused to smile.. 10 year old was cutting up...12 year old had a snotty look on his face and mom just would not STFU about her 20 minute wait..and how she now had to RUSH across town to the wedding that I made her late for.

I got 9 poses out of her..all of which her brat boys would not "smile right" and asked if I could do anything else for her...she said "yeah...refund my money on a wedding gift she can't give now"..blank stare.."have a nice day"

I go to lunch..the whole 15 minutes I could spare so I could ensure that my employees at least got 30. And B*&*^h mom didn't buy not a damn thing! Good thing my asst was smart enough to charge her a sitting fee!

I hate people!

BTW..we are a high volume studio..with NO competetors with only ONE camera room.. while 4 studios 45 mins away in our territory has at least 2. We get booked every 15 minutes. Fair?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous number 4..
I had the pleasure of being single coverage on a DELIVERY day cause my associate was *cough cough* "sick".

I was booked every hour(which can be done..just not on delivery day) and this family of 10 comes strolling in and wanted me to take them NOW. I said "Ma'am.. I am booked every hour..and by myself.."

I don't care.. YOUR website says you take walk ins..

"Yes ma'am..we do..however..(as I pull UP the website) it does say that appointments must be honored first"

She threw a fit.."I want in now.. I have all my family here and I want it NOW!"

"Ma'am.. Im sorry..but this isn't the ER.. we take appointments first. We do not take walkins ahead of those who reserved a spot. However..I have 4 o'clock available"

NO! we have church at that time!

"Then with you being a Christian and would know about having patience huh?" (ok...shouldnt have said that, but wow!)

As she walks away with her kids and her family..I get called a stupid B*&^H...


Then the STORE manager comes up to me and wants to know why I was so rude...Thank GOD I had other customers who love me to death and said that the Entitled Christian was being rude and even swore at me.