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Talk about customer service!

February 8, 2010
 
Finns have finally started to complain about shoddy service! According to a Helsingin Sanomat report (that has been translated into English), a record number of complaints were filed with various agencies in 2008.
 
The reason for the record number of complaints back then could be that Finns have learned that asserting themselves over poor service is not a bad thing to do. Sometimes there is some truly terrible service out there, but since I began my tenure in this fine country, it really has gotten better.
 
One company I will give my kudos to – not just once – but twice is Iittala (www.iittala.fi)
 
Way back in the late 1990s, the Mr. received some Iittala Aarne series glasses and a pitcher as a gift. This is what they look like http://www.iittala.fi/web/Iittalaweb.nsf/fi/tuotteet_juominen_erikoisjuomat_aarne_kaadin_150_cl.
 
The glasses were class II and we noticed at one point (in 2002 or something) that some of them were chipped. Now we only had dishwasher a-la-Carmen (yes, me) back then and I was never rough on them or dropped them or anything like that. The Mr. was mortified when I suggested that he pack the glasses up and take them to our closest Iittala for inspection. I made him do it and he grudgingly brought them to the store. The staff said they would take care of it… A few weeks later the Mr. got a slip in the mail to pick up a package at the post office and VOILA – six new Aarne drinking glassesfor free.
 
Fast forward to earlier this year and the Aarne series pitcher we had developed a large crack near the handle. Not sure what happened there, but it had never been put in the dishwasher and never had been dropped. Last Saturday I made my way down to the Iittala shop at Iso Omena, pulled the pitcher out of my bag, explained the situation; filled out a form and VOILA – a new pitcher – for free.
 
Even the Mr. has accepted that complaining – or rather disagreeing with the quality of products and services, can in fact, pay off. Truthfully – if you bring something back because it is damaged, the worst they can say is no, right? If not, you may get compensated in some way. You won’t be the wiser for it unless you try.
 
The Mr. was rather pleased upon his return from a business trip last night to have a new pitcher in his hands. Smile
 
If something ticks you off and you’ve had shoddy customer service you can take your complaint to the Kuluttajavirasto – AKA the Finnish Consumer Agency http://www.kuluttajavirasto.fi/en-GB/
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