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I recently hopped into live chat support for a popular piece of online software. I’m not going to name them out of courtesy.

The reason I wrote in to them is that functionality I had previously relied on had disappeared in their recent redesign. On top of that, it was unclear how the new functionality handled this behavior until you tried it. I had wasted 15 minutes on this and I was frustrated. I told the live chat agent this and shared the details.


They said: “I understand that learning a new interface can be frustrating. Let me see if I can help.”

The translation for an end-user? “I see, you’re stupid. Let me try to make this simpler for you.”

This literally wasn’t my fault, but even if it was: NEVER make your customer feel like they did something wrong. There’s no upside, and the downside is a bad taste in their mouth whenever they think about your company.

Puppy photo courtesy of Fiona McAllister


Evan Hamilton

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