Thursday, November 18, 2010

My Target Experience

 Sooooo... I got this really nice, espresso colored, table and chair set at Target and it was going to look great in my dining room. Only problem is that it's "DIY - put it together" furniture, which really isn't a problem as I normally like mindless mechanical tasks such as this. But, this was a large piece of furniture and was slightly heavy, so it was going to take some effort to complete the task.

I got the table put together easily and started on the chairs. It only took me one chair to realize that the factory had put 5 right front legs and 3 left front legs in the box. Well... that's just not going to work. Since the table is completely put together now, I'm thinking, "Wow I really don't want to take that apart or carry out to my truck in it's now finished, heavy and awkward state."  I then thought, I'll just call Target and see if I can exchange the incorrect parts for correct ones from another box.

Got my phone, called Target and got the "Teenage Guest Services" lady on the line. "Hello.... (I explain my situation)... so can I just exchange the parts instead of bringing the now partially put together table with the destroyed 5 acres of packaging, and the parts strewed out all over my living room floor?" "Teenage Guest Services" lady says, "No, I'm sorry you have to bring the table back and get a refund or exchange it for another table." "Really", I said. "Why???.... It would be much less trouble for everyone if you allowed me to just exchange the parts." Her answer, "We have to 'defect' your table out of the inventory now." "Okay," I said. "So 'defect' the table set you have in the store after I get what I need out of it." She says.... "We just can't do that." I'm scratching my head now. "So let me get this straight," I say. "You want me to bring this table back to you, in the state that it's in, return it and then purchase a new one, carry the heavy dang thing home by myself, and start putting ANOTHER table together which may also be defective for all I know." She says, "Yes ma'am. That is our policy."

Stupidity as a policy. I have seen this before. After all, I work for the gooberment.

By this time I've decided that I'm just speaking to the wrong person. I'll take the 'defective' parts (and they aren't defective) back to Target and ask to speak to the manager. And that's what I did. I got there, explained my situation again and he gave me the same song and dance as "Teenage Guest Services" lady. But, he offers me another solution. "You could just purchase another table now, take it home, get what you need out of the box, and then bring it back to us and tell us that it was missing parts."

Now my head is spinning around on my shoulders and I'm thinking about spewing pea soup all over "Teenage Guest Services" lady and "Twenty-something Manager" dude. Thankfully, I had no pea soup to hurl. Feeling compelled to point out the absurdly illogical option he was giving me, I speak. "So, I can buy ANOTHER table, lug it to my truck, take it home, rifle through the contents of the package, take out what I need and possible some extra stuff I don't need, and then bring it back to you? How is this different than if we do it right here in the store?" He has no answer. "What if I buy it, take it to the parking lot, open the box, get out what I need and then wheel it right back in to you and return it? Can I do that?" He says, "Well no ma'am, then we'd know that you weren't telling the truth about there being missing parts."

Uhhhhh.... where is my gun?????

"Okay, okay.... " I say. "But then explain to me how THIS is GOOD customer service. Why is the burden to fix this problem on ME... the customer? It's not my fault that the box was packed incorrectly, yet I'm the one who has to do the lion's share of the work to make the situation right."

Is there anyone here in a management position that is over 25 years old and doesn't have acne?

No. I didn't buy a second table. I went home, gathered up the one I had, drove it back to the store, parked in front of the store in the fire lane, crammed the partially assembled table set into a cart and wheeled it back into "Teenage Guest Services Lady". "I'd like to return this," I say. "Oh.... do you want to exchange it for another one," she asks. "Only if you hold me at gun point."

I still have no table and chairs. Next time I'm going to some place where they are already assembled.