Wednesday, August 13, 2014

"I'm Sorry You Feel That Way" is NOT an Apology!

So I'm not going to rehash the situation with UPS here as I've already posted on Yelp. Let us just say that a UPS driver in particular and the local UPS center more generally really doesn't get how to do customer service. This is not news. UPS has had low customer ratings for years and has not done much about it.

But I write here because today's fiasco is all too familiar.

The Scenario:

First person points out that the behavior and actions of second person is creating problems, not just for the first person, but for a lot of people who share commonalities with the first person.

Second person responds with ridicule, insensitivity and contempt. Second person is caught doing so. Second person is asked to apologize. Second person says, "I'm sorry you feel that way" to first person.

Wow. WRONG!!!!!!

First, it is a lie. Second person doesn't feel sorry about anything other than getting caught.

Second, it is impossible. You cannot be sorry for someone else's feelings.

Finally, it is an insult. First person isn't pointing this out because their feelings are hurt. First person is trying to teach second person some empathy. First person doesn't have any moral or practical obligation to teach this lesson. First person has generously chosen this path, usually because first person hopes against hope it will make the world better for everyone.

Conclusion: Second person just doesn't get it and, more probably, just doesn't give a damn.

This is not a good way to run a society and that should be enough. But even if you are the most cynical, right-wing, free-market, big-business, anti-social person on the planet, you should still care. Because this is also no way to run a business.

So at the moment Big Brown thinks, "Well, we've gotten away with this for so long, we can continue to do so." But commerce is unforgiving in the end. So one of two things in Big Brown's future. This will grow into a total collapse of the business or this will be one more indication of a total collapse of the economy.

Unfortunately, I'm think the odds are on the latter. Too many people do business this way.

The Lesson:

This, my friends, is what is wrong with business, with the economy and with life in our society.