AT&T CEO Admits Big Problems, Says Not Happy With His Company

“#1 in Customer Service!” is something we see everywhere these days but happens to just be a lot of lip service. You see it plastered on every billboard, wrapped truck, website banner, and more.

When a business truly gives great customer service, it’s a series of actions and processes that allow them to do that.

Customer service has become a make-or-break for many businesses, startups, and experts – and in our digital age, it’s easy to hear when it’s bad.

Chris Matyszczyk provided a detailed story regarding his customer service experience between two stores. According to him, “I walked into a reasonably sized AT&T store.

There were two customers inside. Very quickly, I was greeted by a saleswoman clutching an iPad.” He initially wanted to see Samsung’s Galaxy Flip 3 and Galaxy Fold 3.

He was immediately told that the wait time is 30 minutes despite having only two customers. 

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He wrote:

But was I going to spend another 28 minutes in the store? Was I minded to go back?

I left, with the latest words of AT&T CEO John Stankey swishing around my brain: “Frankly, I’m not satisfied with where the AT&T brand stands right now.”

He worries the company isn’t well-positioned for the next 10 years. I worry it’s not well-positioned to offer basic customer service right now.

Chris then found himself wandering into a T-Mobile store.

He wrote about his interaction with T-Mobile’s salesman:

“Hi. If I asked you an honest question, would you give me an honest answer?” I began.

“Sure,” he said.

“Is the T-Mobile coverage better in my area than it used to be?”

“Let’s find out,” he replied.

He then walked me over to the counter and showed me his iPad. He let me type in my address and showed me precisely where the nearest tower is and the strength of the signal.

Given the pleasurable experience Chris has with the salesman, he decided to ask him about Samsung’s folding phones.

T-Mobile’s salesman then took him through a comprehensive explanation of how he views the phones.

According to him, Fold 3 still had issues because app designers hadn’t got around to adjusting to Fold 3’s dimensions. He felt that YouTube just didn’t look great on the phone.

“The Flip 3, though, was far more ready for everyday use,” he said. The more I stared at it and fiddled with it, the more I liked it.

Recommended Read: T-Mobile CEO Apologize for Hack of 50M User Data

Chris then wrote: 

So, Mr. Sankey of AT&T, I know that your phone stores are likely a sad pimple on the chin of your brand perception. I know that you want to take AT&T to “a new place.” One, I imagine, that’s blissfully virtual.

But you might want to learn a thing or two about customer service from T-Mobile. Just as T-Mobile might want to learn a thing or two about security from, well, just about anyone who knows a thing or two about security.

Customer service is not a flat, one-dimensional activity that businesses can haphazardly consider. It should be central to everything that is offered through a brand today. The sooner businesses embrace this, the more successful they will be.

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