Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 308 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #1147058
    Avatar
    lobelia
    Member
    Joined: 21 Jun 2007
    Location: central France
    Total posts: 673

    I think it’s great that they don’t give plastic bags in supermarkets here, far from seeing it as something to whinge about. If you do have to buy one they are inexpensive, but it does encourage people to bring their own.


    #1147059
    Avatar
    upsadaisy
    Member
    Joined: 01 Sep 2010
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 94

    @beegee wrote:

    I think some people have problems because they are used to the M & S system.
    I seldom have any problems with customer service in France but I do approach the staff without aggression and in my best French.
    The standard Brit approach of shouting in English never has worked.

    Totally agree! =D>
    re greetings from staff – this seems to be something that has changed over the years. When we first came to France (1991), we were always greeted on entering a shop by the cashiers and also any staff within that shop. Now I would say that its frequent but not every shop. We have got used to greeting on entering waiting rooms etc – its a bit embarrassing when you are in the UK though and do it! We are between two large towns to do our shopping – one SuperU are so friendly and helpful, the one in the other town are surly. I had cause to speak to the manager of the latter some years ago and he was rude and unpleasant both to me and his staff so I think that explains why the staff are surly! I must say he was an exception to the rule – I generally find that if I approach people with a smile and polite request for help that I am treated in the same fashion.


    #1147060
    Avatar
    shandy
    Participant
    Joined: 10 May 2010
    Location: Servoz, France
    Total posts: 42

    I think a lot of it depends on what exactly you count as good service. A lot of people refer to France as being like the UK 30 years ago and that goes for the type of customer service too.
    M&S became renowned for their service because they were the only shops taking goods back without question. And you paid for plastic bags back then too.
    I cannot quibble with our Mr Bricolage or other local DIY at all. They always greet us on entering the shop, have departmental experts on hand who go to great lengths to understand when our French doesn’t cover the technical and find items for us if needed. Compared to B&Q, Homebase etc. in the UK, you are lucky to even find a member of staff and their knowledge is almost always limited to reading the info from the package – as if you couldn’t do that yourself.
    I like some aspects in each country and I also have knowledge of customer service in Ireland where I actually think you cannot beat the Superquinn supermarket group who even walk you to your car under an umbrella on rainy days!


    #1147061
    Avatar
    roadrat
    Participant
    Joined: 28 Oct 2005
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 3683

    @jbc wrote:

    My local M.Bricolage gave excellent customer service-over and above what i would have expected in the UK.

    Mr Bricolage, like Inter sport and Macdonalds, among many others are all franchises. The quality and service from the staff very much depends on how much of a greedy bastard the owner is. I know somebody who works in one of the above and the stories they tell of how the owner treats them is enough to make you want a resurgence of the unions :shock: (almost).


    #1147062
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    @lobelia wrote:

    I think it’s great that they don’t give plastic bags in supermarkets here, far from seeing it as something to whinge about. If you do have to buy one they are inexpensive, but it does encourage people to bring their own.

    Really, and why bother? I just think it’s really poor service and very inconvenient – a bit like when one forgets to weigh fruit and veg – no staff available to run off and do it for you – I’ve often left potential purchases at the checkout – who hasn’t?. It’s very much a ‘this is the way we do it’ attitude – ‘so fit in….’

    I hardly think free plastic bags in supermarkets will be ultimately responsible for Armageddon…..


    #1147063
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    @beegee wrote:


    The standard Brit approach of shouting in English never has worked.

    A huge generalisation – I don’t think I’ve ever seen that happen – an urban myth perhaps? A bit like adding an ‘O’ onto the end of every word……


    #1147064
    Avatar
    bartonflyer
    Participant
    Joined: 07 Feb 2011
    Location: NW UK and Charente 16
    Total posts: 1120

    @golfbunny wrote:

    …… a bit like when one forgets to weigh fruit and veg – no staff available to run off and do it for you – I’ve often left potential purchases at the checkout – who hasn’t?. …..

    I haven’t!

    Surely if that’s the way it is done you just do it?

    Have you ever thought that the nicest thing about banging your head against a brick wall is when you stop?


    Knowledge flies you to the moon, religion flies you into buildings!

    #1147065
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    @bartonflyer wrote:

    @golfbunny wrote:

    …… a bit like when one forgets to weigh fruit and veg – no staff available to run off and do it for you – I’ve often left potential purchases at the checkout – who hasn’t?. …..

    I haven’t!

    Surely if that’s the way it is done you just do it?

    Have you ever thought that the nicest thing about banging your head against a brick wall is when you stop?

    Lucky you :-) I find the problem is lack of consistency between stores – to weigh or not to weigh – not always obvious – you’ve obviously been very lucky.

    Another little ‘issue springs to mind ‘eco participation’ charges for just about anything with a plug on it. I once asked to have this ‘tax’ deducted from the price of a TV I was buying – I think it was around 7€. Anyway – the store wouldn’t reduce the price so I bought the TV via Amazon instead. Another customer walks due to inflexibility….much easier and less painful than banging ones head against a brick wall.


    #1147066
    CelticRambler
    CelticRambler
    Participant
    Joined: 01 Apr 2008
    Location: Good question. What day is it?
    Total posts: 6004

    @golfbunny wrote:


    Sales / product knowledge is VERY basic.
    Supermarkets – NO packing service, NO free carrier bags, most items get CHUCKED down the conveyor belt at top speed.
    Very little (normally no) smiling, singing, humming, whistling – lots of folded arms, short hair and severe specs (on women!).
    Incoming phone calls are ALWAYS more important than the person standing in front of you.
    Use of customer name very rare.
    Non-response to emails – in fact non-response to anything without an ‘accusé de réception’.
    Difficult to escalate an issue to supervisor / manager level.
    Staff couldn’t care less if you walk away – they’ve got a job for life anyway – very difficult to fire.
    Customer is not King – the employees are much more important.

    In fact really GOOD customer service in France stands out a mile – because it’s SO unusual and simply not the norm.

    I think it’s simply a cultural thing – miles away from Anglo-Saxon attitudes and expectations.

    Wow. :shock: What a strange view of the world.

    Plastic bags are rarely free in any European country. Ireland taxed them out of existence several years ago (deliberately) and – like in France – ordinary people now take their own bags to the shops.

    I’ve never yet been to a French supermarket where things are CHUCKED down the conveyor belt. If anything, it’s the opposite – whether it’s Leclerc, SuperU, Carrefour or Auchan, the cashier is quite happy to pause while you pack or go back to weigh your bananas or even look for your cheque book and pièce d’identité and no-one gets trolley rage. If you’re the one waiting, it’s not like you’ll escape Armageddon by saving those five minutes. In Bricomarché this afternoon, there was plenty of banter between the cashier and the customers, with one checkout seeming to turn into “la patate express”.

    “Incoming phone calls are ALWAYS more important than the person standing in front of you” – yep, first rule of reception management, because the person trying to contact you cannot see or hear what’s going on at your desk, so you answer the ‘phone and deal with it.

    Sure, the French have yet to fully understand how e-mail and the internet work, but when they do, they use it at least as well as any Anglo-Saxon.

    And btw, the eco-tax applies to all electrical products sold in the EU, so Amazon will have charged you exactly the same amount.


    #1147067
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    I suppose that’s one of the things a forum is for CelticRambler – airing diverse views. You have yours – I have mine.

    One point I won’t let go though – answering phone calls whilst serving a customer – unforgivable. ‘Reception’ staff, customer contact staff, cashiers etc should NEVER be given the additional responsibility to answer phone calls. Plain rude.

    BTW – I prefer to shop where I receive good service and value for money – if that’s on-line then so be it – I couldn’t care less.


    #1147068
    mysty2
    mysty2
    Participant
    Joined: 29 Jul 2012
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 9603

    Celticrambler, have you never been in Lidils :shock: they do not quite chuck the things at you but its not far off it. :D
    I have had very good and very bad service here like beegee I took back an electric saw after I had seriously used it and they replaced it within minutes. Bricodepot are great when you return anything. Bmw customer service prize one fibbers.


    #1147069
    Avatar
    juglans
    Participant
    Joined: 25 Dec 2012
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 680

    “Use of customer name very rare.”

    Its true. None of the staff at Leclerc or SuperU or Lidl or Noz know my name.

    “Very little (normally no) smiling, singing, humming, whistling – lots of folded arms, short hair and severe specs (on women!).”

    Curiously the fact that staff are often whistling, singing and doing handstands rather than serving me gets up my nose.

    And I like short hair.


    #1147070
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    @juglans wrote:

    “Use of customer name very rare.”

    Its true. None of the staff at Leclerc or SuperU or Lidl or Noz know my name.

    You must always pay cash then?

    “Very little (normally no) smiling, singing, humming, whistling – lots of folded arms, short hair and severe specs (on women!).”

    Curiously the fact that staff are often whistling, singing and doing handstands rather than serving me gets up my nose.

    You must prefer the standard ‘miserable / fed-up’ demeanour then

    And I like short hair.

    So do I on men and dogs

    Take a look through your local daily newspaper and count the number of photos with people either not smiling or with their arms folded in front of them…. go on I dare you….it’s cultural..:-)


    #1147071
    Avatar
    juglans
    Participant
    Joined: 25 Dec 2012
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 680

    golfbunny

    This is the kind of brit that has motivated me to learn french and pretend I am belgian.


    #1147072
    Avatar
    golfbunny
    Participant
    Joined: 18 Mar 2013
    Location: N/A
    Total posts: 68

    What on earth makes you think I’m a Brit ????!!! Now that is funny….:-)


French Life & Living
Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 308 total)

You cannot reply to this topic.