I'm in the market to purchase a car and when I saw a newspaper ad that caught my eye I asked my Dad, (Papa Dale) to follow up for me. After all, he knows the questions to ask, has a mechanical inclination and most of all is a very happy owner of a 2012 Kia Optima which he acquired earlier this year.
When he made the phone call on my behalf, he put the call on speaker, because I was still at home getting ready for work. What should have been an information gathering call, including setting an appointment for a trip to the dealership to sign an agreement, turned into something that disturbed me enough that I am now writing about the experience.
I found the salesman to be rude and very disrespectful. The salesman's comments were condescending and he treated Papa Dale as though he was feeble-minded and just didn't understand. When my Dad got off the phone, he could see that my feathers were ruffled. He said, "Oh, it's no big deal, the guy's probably just having a bad day." My response was, it's not okay to treat people in that way.
I could go on and on, but, I'll give you the "Readers Digest" version. Despite voicemails and emails to Halleen Kia's customer service department and management over a two week period, I received no follow up. So today, I got back on Halleen Kia's website and emailed that I was interested in a car. You guessed it...like magic I received a follow up phone call in less than two hours.
A delightful saleswoman named Kris, responded to my email by phone. I am sure that she was not expecting to get an ear full. After listening to my concerns, she asked if I would like to speak to the sales manager. Of course, I said yes, and she said she would have him call me.
Within another fifteen minutes, I was on the phone with the Sales Manager. I was expecting to speak with someone who cared, who understood the need to treat all customers with respect, to listen and respond with understanding and sensitivity. Most of all, I expected to speak with someone who appreciated the correlation between sales and a positive customer experience.
BOY WAS I WRONG! the manager listened to my story, and said, "I'll tell the salesmen that he always needs to be on his best behavior no matter what. We have great customer satisfaction most of the time. Unfortunately, you were one of the times that fell through the cracks. That's what happens when you have the volume we have. If I can ever be of service to you or your family give me a call."
Now, I will let you the reader decide for yourself. For me, HALLEEN KIA goes on the NOT SO FRIENDLY TO SENIORS LIST. My dear friend quoted this adage, "The fish stinks from the head down."