Over the past 20 years, I have been noticing the decline of the true art of exceptional customer service . But last Friday night took the cake.
After being intrigued by the Restoration Hardware brand for years, my wife and I decided to gift our dining room set to our son and his wife and purchase a new one.
And as the simple, clean designs of the Restoration Hardware furniture line appealed to us, we decide to purchase a dining room table, six side chairs, two end chairs and an apothecary-style china cabinet on October 5, 2012.
As our old dining room set could not be moved out until November 3, we were assured by Restoration Hardware that the new furniture would be delivered last Friday, November 16.
The delivery date was important to us as the old furniture was moved out according to plan on November 3, and our dining room has been empty waiting for the new goods from RH.
On November 15, the day before the delivery, we received a phone call confirming that the delivery would take place the next day, with an alert that one of the six side chairs would not be delivered because it did not pass quality control. Translation: the delivery company broke it.
Okay. Not the end of the world. We'll use a kitchen chair to replace the broken one.
Then November 16 finally came, with a confirming phone call that the delivery truck would be at our home in 20 minutes.
Door bell rings. Door is opened. Delivery agent says "I have good news, and I have bad news."
I reply "What's the bad news?"
"We don't have your dining room table."
My response was an adult version of "Are you kidding me? I have family coming next Thursday for Thanksgiving dinner."
"I don't know. It didn't make it.," he replied.
He and a co-worker then brought into our home the furniture they did have and then said someone from Restoration Hardware would contact us.
Being suckered once, I decided to get in my car pronto and drive down to the Phillips Place store to tell our tale of woe, only to find that at 6:50 on a Friday night they were closing.
"I will check on this first thing tomorrow morning and call you," the clerk promised.
My phone did not ring as promised on Saturday -- nor Sunday for that matter.
So I phoned the store to follow up yesterday and not to my surprise, no one in the store was aware we had a problem, including the two ladies we spoke to in the store three nights ago. In fact -- get this -- their records showed that our dining room table was actually delivered Friday night -- which it was not.
"Did the delivery company steal the table?." I thought at first. "Please hold and I will check into this for you. No, wait. I'll call you back.," the RH clerk promised.
"It turns out the table was damaged in transit and the delivery company did not tell us about it.," she said when she called back minutes later.
"Your missing chair should be delivered in two weeks, and the missing table in four weeks.," she ended the conversation with. Great. Just in time to miss our Christmas family dinner, too. Awesome. Two holidays ruined by Restoration Hardware.
Then, are you ready for this, the clerk closes the conversation with, "Mister Spada, in the future, please remember to call us immediately when you have a problem."
Thanks, Anna. But like the Mayflower, that ship has sailed. And it's not coming back. Ever.