Saturday, 10 October 2009

B&Q – You broke my heart

BQHeartI loved you B&Q.

Your wide aisles, filled with tools, materials and furnishings that inspired me to do more.

Your warm colour of orange welcoming me when all others failed – stocking those items in such breadth that I never failed to find what I wanted.

Your tips and hints that helped when I doubted my skills and filled me with confidence to finish what I’d started.

True you didn’t always reward me – Wickes was always trying to get my attention.

But I stuck by you because you felt comfortable, I knew you, I knew you’d always be there when I needed something. I didn’t care about price – I was happy with a wide selection and good friendly service.

I opened my wallet to you and you responded in kind with a pleasurable shopping experience.

selfserviceBut then you ripped out my heart… when you ripped out your tills.

Instead you replaced them with self service units which meant I had to scan my own products.

No longer the warm, friendly voice of a satisfied employee – instead an automated voice ordering me what to do – telling me when I get it wrong (even when I don’t) - questioning my age when I buy solvent based products (even though I’m paying by credit card) – refusing to scan my barcode (even though it was completely undamaged).

I know you tried – one employee to man 4 automated tills – all of them going wrong. I tried to talk to you – but you said “there is only me”.

You had tills – but no one staffing them. You knew I was coming, it was Saturday at 2pm – it’s when we all come – yet you had no one to help.

I know I’m not aloneothers have felt the same way.

Surely you understand that the purchase process is critical to repeat custom – a time when reassurance that you’ve made the right decision is key.

Surely you realise that as my money flows from me to you I want to feel I’m getting good value for money – not feeling like I’m paying the same price for less service.

Surely you know that employees are the physical manifestation of your brand.

Surely you can see how a brand which has tied it’s proposition to its staff – showing them within your advertising, speaking of them by name – has managed to completely destroy this in one failed moment of truth.

Surely you understand there are plenty more fish in the sea.

Your automated voice asked me at the end “How did we do? Please tell us”.

Consider this the reply.

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