The other day I called a company and actually got a person, a real live human being! I was so excited that I kept the person on the phone for about ten minutes asking her questions that had nothing to do with my original purpose, which was to ask about my next oil delivery. I’m sure she thought that I was a lonely woman looking for someone to communicate with, since I asked her how long she had worked at the company, if she was married and how many children she had.
It is a rarity to make a call today and not have it be a numbers game. It used to start with press one, press two, etc . Now, however, when you press one, there are several options to choose from before you get to number two. Last week I called one of the phone companies and thought my finger was going to fall off trying to navigate all the choices. I found myself getting crazier and crazier as I pressed on. I shouldn’t even be making this disclosure, since I teach stress management and encourage people not to become irrational. Finding yourself becoming more and more nuts over a robot that could care less is perhaps the height of irrationality. But, I know if someone were to take my blood pressure during the moments I am trying to get to a human, they would probably hospitalize me.
The voices they choose for these clones is even more aggravating. One that a local medical facility uses sounds like it has taken a drug overdose. Then to top it off, it periodically announces that if you don’t understand “IT” you can start over. I would prefer watching a faucet drip all day then start over.
The icing on the cake is the preliminary disclosure before you even begin that the call is being monitored for quality assurance. Well, if it is, then someone listening should cover their ears to protect them from the many expletives that emanate from my lips. Who is monitoring? And if they really are, they must realize by now that a lot of people are sick and tired of trying to connect to someone or something that really doesn’t care. Sure I can repeat representative, or operator over and over till the clone stops saying they can help me. Yes, eventually a person will come on. Why not put them on from the get go? People need jobs, and we need people who can actually respond to our questions, instead of simply repeating programmed responses. Yes, technology has helped us evolve, but are we also dissolving in the process?