On Customer Service.

Six babies! A few months ago, I photographed a Mom's group's babies. I lean and hover over babies for these eagle eye shots. Always a little scary, because in holding the camera so that it points straight down, I really feel the gravity of the lens. Ideally, I would be supported by a crane, and maybe the babies could be lying in a (gently sloping, padded of course) cone, so that their heads would be tipped to look at the camera, rather than down and out of the picture.

I've been thinking a lot about customer service. The incident last week has lead to actual bad dreams about photo shoots. In one case, I was late and also realized I was in the wrong location, and in another, my clients showed up wearing head to toe: all different shades of Red. Color clashing, apparently, is horrific to my subconscious.

Back to customer service. There are different standards for behavior, depending on whether one is a customer or a customer service (S) person. Customers can lose their temper, be impatient, late, fussy, demanding, have bad moods taken out upon them, and (S)s are expected to pleasantly and effectively deal with that while smiling. Should a (S) exhibit any of those behaviors, they get bad reviews, reported to bosses, or just plain yelled at. Well yes, (S)s are paid and thus have certain expectations placed on them, but at the same time, we (S)s are still human.

Fortunately, I'd say 99.5% of the time, I have no problems at all and customer relations are actually fun. It's one of those unfortunate things that for some reason, bad events are deeper etched in the brain than good happenings. I've had three great sessions since, yet the Bay Bridge Traffic incident eclipses all that. Ugh.  I sent an apologetic email, not expecting any response of course. It's what businesses have to do: apologize. Big businesses must have whole departments set up for apologizing.

Anyways, all of this being a customer service person has made me very nice to customer service people I encounter.