I was surprised by a frantic call from my home resort, the company where I bought my timeshare.
They were threatened to be exposed on national television of being a scam. Being an attorney for the leading broadcasting station, they wanted me to speak on their behalf, to do some sort of a testimony, to talk to their client and allay the client’s fears (and silence his threats).
I told them I could not. I was not happy with them.
I was happy with RCI, yes. Let me explain that RCI is the umbrella organization to which my home resort is a member. I actually joined my home resort just to get to RCI, because that is where gems of trips (and resorts) are.
RCI had been more than accommodating to me at the times when I called them to arrange for a week (or weekend) out of the country. The hotels they provided almost always exceeded expectations. They were very courteous and thorough. They would call me when they said they would and follow up with me to find out if I have made a decision regarding a trip. Paying was a painless process. They accepted credit cards however the instructions reach them, whether it be via phone or via email. They almost always said yes to every request – upgrades to a 2 bedroom villa, a small kitchen in the room, mini-breaks (3-4 days) when my home resort does not allow mini-breaks (has to be minimum of 1 week), booked my trip during high season. They frequently call me for offers to save me money, or to check up on me. Yes, I am happy with them.
I could not say the same for my home resort. They are very hard to reach and very hard to talk to. One request, like waiver of the 1% penalty per month for delay in paying the annual fees, a request that I made very recently, went through the eye of the needle (let’s talk board approval). Let me explain that I do not see value in them so I am not really excited about paying them. After my request, they did not update me or call me, I had to follow-up with them. Their point person is argumentative, will not verify her statements (you already used your mini break in October 2006 ma’am, to which I replied, I am sure your resort has a record of who has stayed there and I am sure I am not one of them – I have never been there), not very trusting (we want you to promise – sounded to me more like I have to sign an undertaking – that your check will not bounce before I deposit your week) that I am appalled as to what they make me out to be. Sure, there are bad people out there that make for bad business but to put those statements out there where their customers feel they have to assure them does not sit well with me. In short, their customer service, for lack of a better term, sucks.
And I think that would be the beginning of the end of a business.
I have a friend whose receptionist rarely smiles. She would not hear the end of it from her customers.
Good customer service is a small price to pay for a business. As a matter of fact, it has to be intricately woven into the fabric of the business and every employee should be required to live and breathe it. The customer is always right. To stay in business, that has got to be one of the core values.
I am sure my home resort learned it the hard way, if they learned it at all.