I’m sure you will have heard me talk about my ‘Special Case’ … if you haven’t, don’t worry – it’s nothing sinister – just a specially designed box that I take with me on my travels to transport back home any bottles of Wine or Port that particularly catch my eye.
However, on my recent Port Tasting break, those halfwits at BA had some sort of luggage belt issue going on and failed to fly my ‘Special Case’ over with me … and when they did finally get their act together, they intended to fly it over and deliver it to my hotel ASAP… which would have meant it arrived one hour after we had actually left on another BA flight (so it’s not as though they didn’t know where we would be…)
As you can imagine, I felt a ‘brief chat’ with BA was required, and resulted in them being told to leave the case exactly where it was … and any bottles that took my fancy were to be shipped direct to Lowe Towers at BA’s cost. Now this was particularly handy as my case held just 8 bottles … but with BA now picking up the tab for shipping I’m sure that you can guess I picked up a few extras…
But the fun didn’t stop there … you see, my instruction to not bother flying my ‘Special Case’ over had been ignored, and in a bout of well intentioned incompetence, BA had sent it over anyway so we could pick it up from the airport when we arrived to take our flight home.
This, you might think, was rather good of them – except for the fact it was now over the other side of the airport at ‘arrivals’, which could only be accessed from ’departures’ (where we were) by getting clearance from, it seemed, about a dozen security chaps, each one more harder to locate than the next…
So, 90 minutes, 4 piles of paperwork and countless security guards later we got to ‘arrivals’ only to find the case had now been transferred over to where we had just come from … so I was less than amused when I boarded the plane – with my ‘special case’ having to be carried on as hand luggage.
Was my ‘Special Case’ allowed to be put in a store or vacant spot on the plane where it would have fitted perfectly without causing any trouble?
Of course not – due to ‘health and safety’ it had to be stored in a overhead locker which I then had to strain to reach because the steward, also quoting ‘health and safety’, was ‘unable’ to help me … a situation which could have very easily ended up with me dropping that very heavy case on somebody’s head.
What’s the lesson here? … when you mess up badly, (something we all do occasionally) and the customer comes up with a simple way to make it ‘right’ … then just do it an don’t try and be clever.
‘Over delivering’ is all well and good on products or services that you’ve created and know back to front, but try it with something you have little or no control over (and that you’ve already got wrong once) you can easily make matters even worse….
Until Next Time,