02-21-2014 04:46 PM
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  1. Judge_Daniel's Avatar
    Hey guys and gals,

    I submitted a self page on the Verizon subreddit, since so many of us have had trouble with Verizon reps not even knowing about the Icon. Hopefully it will reach at least one rep.

    Here's the link!

    Let me know what you think.
    pci2k, aximtreo, HeyCori and 2 others like this.
    02-17-2014 04:59 AM
  2. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    Good luck! I hope there are not too many issues with Verizon reps.
    02-17-2014 05:10 PM
  3. Judge_Daniel's Avatar
    Oh my gosh... I've never been so frustrated in my life. These reps are just as bad as the ones in person.
    02-18-2014 12:50 AM
  4. Tjarren's Avatar
    There was a comment on that thread that just made me sad. I'd link to it but I don't want to make other people sad too. What a horrible culture this is ...
    02-18-2014 03:36 AM
  5. Judge_Daniel's Avatar
    I know! I'm beyond aggravated at this point.
    02-18-2014 09:23 AM
  6. Indistinguishable's Avatar
    That thread is so sad...

    I'm never buying from a Verizon corporate store ever again.
    02-18-2014 09:52 AM
  7. Judge_Daniel's Avatar
    Yeah, I can't decide if I agree with that. Now I kind of want to go to corporate stores just to mess with reps so that they HAVE to learn how to use Windows Phones.
    02-18-2014 10:14 AM
  8. WarDamnEagle09's Avatar
    My deposit for the Icon went to the Microsoft store. I hope to live the rest of my life without having to step foot in a Verizon store again. Their network is amazing, but dealing with their reps brings clarity to why serial killers exist.
    calfee20 likes this.
    02-18-2014 10:18 AM
  9. Markham Ranja's Avatar
    A VZW employee posted this interesting comment, which I paste here without annotating:

    Do you really want to know why we don't know anything about the Windows phones? Be warned, this will not be a popular opinion. I work in a corporate store. None of us even bother to talk about or learn about the windows phones and we actively steer customers away from them and toward Android and iOS.

    I'd say a good 90% of the customers who walk in the door for a smartphone are after specifically Android or specifically iOS. These two operating systems are very well-known, easy to demo, and have a metric ton of apps that everyone who gets a smartphone wants. In addition, they have equivalent software that does what Windows touts, which is essentially Office (and a few extras). SkyDrive? Google Drive. Outlook? Any mail app on the planet. Exchange Server? iPhones have always had it. There is no major distinguishing factor on the Windows OS that sets it as a leg up on iOS or Android that isn't really easy to work around when on the two big OSs. (And seriously, no one buys a Windows phone to hook up to their Xbox.)

    So what about that other 10%? Well, the majority of them really don't care--they just want a smartphone. Maybe, maybe 1% of customers at most is after a Windows phone. So, right out the gate, you're talking about a tiny fraction of walk-ins for whom it is valuable to get product knowledge on Windows, and of that 1%, the vast majority already know everything they want to know about Windows and just want to buy it.

    So in the case of the Icon, I am not remotely surprised that people at your store didn't realize it launched. Product launches are only one of the many announcements we are bombarded with internally, and there's a river of "important news" filling our inbox constantly. Every single department and every single level of upper management sends us email marked "Important", and Windows phone news is at the top of the list of "things to delete immediately because no one cares". When a new Windows phone comes in, the phones get stacked at the back of the shelf with the Blackberries, the accessories get hung on the pegs in the bottom corner of the inventory room, the floor demo doesn't get set up for a week, and no one realizes it launched because we get about thirty emails a day from corporate about all kinds of crap we never read.

    So, now let's talk about what's BAD about windows.

    Lack of Apps. When I have two different platforms that each have over a million apps, why on earth would I get a customer into a phone that might have a few of the common apps that all their friends will have?

    Bugs. Bugs bugs bugs. When you have to apologize to a customer that your contacts won't open and spontaneously crash the phone every time you try it, and whoops, you have to factory reset, and yes, it will take a good thirty minutes to completely reset, unless the reset gets stuck (which it does half the time, and you can't tell whether it's stuck or just taking forever), in which case whoops, now your otherwise-working phone has to have a CLNR replacement shipped to you and you're without a phone for a few days...it gets old fast.
    Bluetooth craps out a lot, a lot of sync services don't work half the time, and God forbid someone accidentally put today's date as their birthdate and there is NO WORKAROUND for your one-day-old customer other than making a Windows account yourself, "acquiring" them as a child, changing their birthdate, then releasing them from child status. (And by the way, OP, I know that you're aware of the bugs, too.)

    So what does all this mean? Returns. What you DO NOT want as a sales rep is to have a customer walk back in and return a phone, it hits reps hard. (That's the financial side, but from a personal side, customers returning phones are unhappy, and we want happy, satisfied customers.) When Windows launched and the sales reps began selling them, they came back in droves because the customers found the lack of apps appalling and found all kinds of weird quirky bugs that we couldn't explain or fix. We are expected to have answers, and "I have no idea why that phone is doing that, it makes no sense" is not an answer we can give. Managers were extending M2 exchanges and waiving restock fees to keep people from dropping lines, and even months later were allowing manager-discretion M2 upgrades because customers were unhappy and we didn't have answers for the Windows quirks and issues.

    So why don't we know anything about the Icon? We don't sell it. Yes, we have it, but we don't sell it. We sell phones people want, phones we know, phones we can demo, and phones we can fix if problems crop up.

    Oh, your iPhone is off and won't turn on, won't respond to charge? It's easy to fix! Your phone is just frozen, hold these two buttons and your phone is working and you're happy. Oh, your Windows phone is doing some random-*** thing I've never heard of but doesn't surprise me even slightly? Well, let's master reset it I guess, do you have an errand you can run for half an hour...? Oops, your phone is stuck in reset mode and won't boot, here's an old Blackberry you can use for two days with no contacts while we send you a replacement.

    It ultimately comes down to this: you want a Windows phone? It's on you. I'll do my best to talk you out of it. We are not responsible for propping up flagging Windows product line sales and we want to make our customers happy. That means selling them popular, reliable, mature phones that we can be confident in. The fact that you, a Windows fan, are not happy that I'm spurning windows makes no difference to my customer, who is happy that I'm recommending a solid, reliable Droid or iPhone that they will love for two years.

    This topic pisses me off, so I'm posting anonymously. This is a peek behind the mask (because I'm usually a really nice guy and my customers love me). I care too much about making my customers happy to get them into a wildcard phone that they might be okay with but will probably be dissatisfied with. I will not stand behind Windows and I don't care to learn more about their products. Period.
    02-18-2014 10:42 AM
  10. fonefan's Avatar
    Should post that on Verizon Facebook page and website. Maybe it'll help to get better sales people and training at their stores.

    Posted via the WPC App
    02-18-2014 10:46 AM
  11. Jas00555's Avatar
    A Oh, your iPhone is off and won't turn on, won't respond to charge? It's easy to fix! Your phone is just frozen, hold these two buttons and your phone is working and you're happy. Oh, your Windows phone is doing some random-*** thing I've never heard of but doesn't surprise me even slightly? Well, let's master reset it I guess, do you have an errand you can run for half an hour...? Oops, your phone is stuck in reset mode and won't boot, here's an old Blackberry you can use for two days with no contacts while we send you a replacement.
    This right here is the problem. This one paragraph summarizes what's wrong with this guy, and by extension, Verizon. To reset a Windows Phone, you just have to do a soft reset with the volume and power button, but as this guy clearly says, he has no interest in learning about the product, so he remains ignorant to how WP works.
    02-18-2014 10:49 AM
  12. MobileVortex's Avatar
    02-18-2014 10:51 AM
  13. Markham Ranja's Avatar
    This right here is the problem. This one paragraph summarizes what's wrong with this guy, and by extension, Verizon. To reset a Windows Phone, you just have to do a soft reset with the volume and power button, but as this guy clearly says, he has no interest in learning about the product, so he remains ignorant to how WP works.
    Have you tried reading the rest of the article? And soft reset (can we just call it a reboot please?!) doesn't fix many things. Mysteriously non-syncing EAS accounts and similarly mysterious inability to see my home Wifi, among other things.

    IMO, he makes some great points and confirms some hypotheses I've held about why store reps do not like WP. I'm an engineer, generally a techie, and can fix things. Most consumers can't. And I've been in that situation where the job bombards you with so much information that you must prioritise, prevent cognitive overload. If, for example, MS offered even a $20 commission to carrier employees for each WP sale, and guaranteed that they would pay for any returns, this would insulate the carrier and its employees from the risk of returns and motivate them greatly to sell more WPs.
    k0de and etad putta like this.
    02-18-2014 10:56 AM
  14. MobileVortex's Avatar
    Personally, I've owned Windows phones for 4 years. I have not had 1 issue that a soft reset did not fix.
    02-18-2014 11:08 AM
  15. WarDamnEagle09's Avatar
    I understand their frustration, being dumb must be tough. Pretty much sums up his/her intelligence right here: "I will not stand behind Windows and I don't care to learn more about their products. Period." He/she complains there are no workarounds but then admits a refusal to learn any of the workarounds/solutions?
    Slater_GS, irvin792 and willied like this.
    02-18-2014 11:09 AM
  16. MobileVortex's Avatar
    Cell phone sales must be real hard.... what a joke.
    02-18-2014 11:11 AM
  17. Jas00555's Avatar
    Have you tried reading the rest of the article? And soft reset (can we just call it a reboot please?!) doesn't fix many things. Mysteriously non-syncing EAS accounts and similarly mysterious inability to see my home Wifi, among other things.

    IMO, he makes some great points and confirms some hypotheses I've held about why store reps do not like WP. I'm an engineer, generally a techie, and can fix things. Most consumers can't. And I've been in that situation where the job bombards you with so much information that you must prioritise, prevent cognitive overload. If, for example, MS offered even a $20 commission to carrier employees for each WP sale, and guaranteed that they would pay for any returns, this would insulate the carrier and its employees from the risk of returns and motivate them greatly to sell more WPs.
    Yes I did, did YOU? His last sentence was "and I don't care to learn more about their products. Period. " so let's not pretend that this guy is a Windows Phone expert, just some guy defending his job. Frankly, the problems that he described are basically non-issues to the majority. I haven't had any of the problems that this guy has described and no one I know with a Windows Phone does either. It's a chicken and egg thing, this guy wonders why they don't sell these phones, then admits that he pushes people away. EVERY OS has problems. EVERY. No, not just some, EVERY. So let's not pretend that this guy's lack of knowledge on the platform equals a problem with the entire platform. This guy admits that he chooses to not learn about the product, so why should he be defended? I'm not saying that every salesperson should know 100% about every phone, but to explicitly say "I don't care to learn about their products" show a complete lack of respect for his job. If your store carries it, you should know about it. That's not just common sense, that's basic customer service.

    Frankly most of his issues that he's experienced e.g. syncing issues, Bluetooth issues, etc.. can be found on every platform. For example, for some reason, when our internet reset, my phone was the only one for a while that could connect to the internet until Comcast came and fixed it. Yes, you heard that, my phone (in a family full of iPhones) was the only one able to connect. Granted I got 2 mbps down, but again, the internet was bad. Or in my car, my phone connects to my Bluetooth speaker, yet my sister's iphone fails to stream music through it when other phones do it just fine. This guy does not respect his profession enough to learn basic customer service. I don't expect him to know the exact spec sheet of every phone that comes into his store, but to intentionally ignore a platform is disrespectful about his profession, regardless of whether it has 1%, 5%, 50% or 99.99%, you should know how to do your job. If an auto shop said "I refuse to learn about Hondas because I don't see many of them, would you go to that person in the future? Probably not. Why would you even defend this?
    02-18-2014 11:16 AM
  18. fonefan's Avatar
    Yes I did, did YOU? His last sentence was "and I don't care to learn more about their products. Period. " so let's not pretend that this guy is a Windows Phone expert, just some guy defending his job. Frankly, the problems that he described are basically non-issues to the majority. I haven't had any of the problems that this guy has described and no one I know with a Windows Phone does either. It's a chicken and egg thing, this guy wonders why they don't sell these phones, then admits that he pushes people away. EVERY OS has problems. EVERY. No, not just some, EVERY. So let's not pretend that this guy's lack of knowledge on the platform equals a problem with the entire platform. This guy admits that he chooses to not learn about the product, so why should he be defended? I'm not saying that every salesperson should know 100% about every phone, but to explicitly say "I don't care to learn about their products" show a complete lack of respect for his job. If your store carries it, you should know about it. That's not just common sense, that's basic customer service.

    Frankly most of his issues that he's experienced e.g. syncing issues, Bluetooth issues, etc.. can be found on every platform. For example, for some reason, when our internet reset, my phone was the only one for a while that could connect to the internet until Comcast came and fixed it. Yes, you heard that, my phone (in a family full of iPhones) was the only one able to connect. Granted I got 2 mbps down, but again, the internet was bad. Or in my car, my phone connects to my Bluetooth speaker, yet my sister's iphone fails to stream music through it when other phones do it just fine. This guy does not respect his profession enough to learn basic customer service. I don't expect him to know the exact spec sheet of every phone that comes into his store, but to intentionally ignore a platform is disrespectful about his profession, regardless of whether it has 1%, 5%, 50% or 99.99%, you should know how to do your job. If an auto shop said "I refuse to learn about Hondas because I don't see many of them, would you go to that person in the future? Probably not. Why would you even defend this?
    Thank you very much for saying this. If you're going to do your job, do it right... Don't just half a** it. Part of customer service is providing customers with solutions to their problems. How do you expect to do that if you don't know anything about the products they're purchasing?

    Posted via the WPC App
    02-18-2014 11:30 AM
  19. california86's Avatar
    Thank you very much for saying this. If you're going to do your job, do it right... Don't just half a** it. Part of customer service is providing customers with solutions to their problems. How do you expect to do that if you don't know anything about the products they're purchasing?

    Posted via the WPC App
    Unfortunately, this isn't specific to Verizon stores. This is just the culture in low-level sales. Sales Rep isn't exactly the most glamourous, high-paying job, so they're going to end up doing what they need to do to get by. If they don't have to do a certain something to get by, they won't. I'm not saying this is the way all sales reps are, but those with good customer service and actually know the products they sell are few and far between.

    Years ago, I used to work at an electronics store. I pushed customers towards the products that benefited me in some way, whether it be more comission, satisfy weekly quotas, or I just knew more about a certain product over another.

    It's far from ideal, but that's just how the culture is.

    I feel that going to the actual brand store (e.g. Microsoft Store, Apple Store, Levi's, etc), you'll get better customer service, not only because of better training, but because that's all they sell--their own products. When you go to stores that sell various branded products, you end up having the sales rep making the choice for the customer.
    pci2k, Tjarren and etad putta like this.
    02-18-2014 11:42 AM
  20. k0de's Avatar
    This is a no win situation. According to some reply's on that thread it seems that reps are extreme afraid to sell WP because of their bad past experiences. That is sad and a serious obstacle for WP to over come.

    Some said that they wont sell WP because of the returns. Going further buying a WP is on you. And that's why they try to talk you out of buying.

    Well that's explain why this is a common problem every where. Thanks for this post.

    The next question is. How can MSFT win back the sales reps on all these main line stores?
    02-18-2014 11:59 AM
  21. Dush Ku's Avatar
    and God forbid someone accidentally put today's date as their birthdate and there is NO WORKAROUND for your one-day-old customer other than making a Windows account yourself, "acquiring" them as a child, changing their birthdate, then releasing them from child status.
    I'm fairly certain you can just log into the Microsoft Account and change your birth date in the account settings.
    02-18-2014 12:04 PM
  22. dkediger's Avatar
    Nah. Just tried it. At least in the US, I'm pretty certain that's by design with minors, or at least up to a certain age. It does warn you that you need to have a parent sign in to "authorize" the account, but it does "create" or hold the account login just created - even if you hit cancel. So, if the customer wanted to use that login, they would need to have an "adult" account authorize the new one.

    Google just refuses to create the account, unless you use the appropriate age.

    So, 2 ways of handling it. In practice, Microsoft's is probably more "honest", as Google's requires you to fudge the age. You could do that as well on Outlook.com, but then there's also the credit card bounce they use as well.

    Its not like the "Enter Your Birthday" field is pre-populated though. It would be good practice to verify the date before continuing though.
    02-18-2014 12:44 PM
  23. etad putta's Avatar
    This is a no win situation. According to some reply's on that thread it seems that reps are extreme afraid to sell WP because of their bad past experiences. That is sad and a serious obstacle for WP to over come.

    Some said that they wont sell WP because of the returns. Going further buying a WP is on you. And that's why they try to talk you out of buying.

    Well that's explain why this is a common problem every where. Thanks for this post.

    The next question is. How can MSFT win back the sales reps on all these main line stores?
    Its a simple answer, better product and money. To get people to change to windows phones they will have to be better than iphone and android and not in the eyes of you and me but reputable reviewers will have to say it. Being equal ain't gonna cut it. The high end phones will have to be cheaper than the competition and sellers will have to receive extra compensation for selling WM. Actually having 8.1 make it to all the devices it is supposed to might help also. It's vaporware until it's actually on a consumers phone.
    k0de likes this.
    02-18-2014 01:02 PM
  24. Dush Ku's Avatar
    Nah. Just tried it. At least in the US, I'm pretty certain that's by design with minors, or at least up to a certain age. It does warn you that you need to have a parent sign in to "authorize" the account, but it does "create" or hold the account login just created - even if you hit cancel. So, if the customer wanted to use that login, they would need to have an "adult" account authorize the new one.

    Google just refuses to create the account, unless you use the appropriate age.

    So, 2 ways of handling it. In practice, Microsoft's is probably more "honest", as Google's requires you to fudge the age. You could do that as well on Outlook.com, but then there's also the credit card bounce they use as well.

    Its not like the "Enter Your Birthday" field is pre-populated though. It would be good practice to verify the date before continuing though.
    Ah, I guess I can log in and change mine because it already sees me as an adult. I wonder if I changed my birthday to one of a child's age if it would lock me out.
    02-18-2014 01:22 PM
  25. dkediger's Avatar
    I wouldn't try it on my primary account. I'd create a dummy account to test with....
    02-18-2014 01:42 PM
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