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Social Media Can Be Used To Fix Employee Blunders

Posted on the 01 December, 2011 at 3:22 pm Written by in Social Media

Social media first aidRenault South Africa has been nursing the wound to the Renault reputation following an email gaffe committed by an employee in a northern suburbs dealership. A customer sent through an email to the dealership complaining that 3 of her vehicle’s coils had been replaced instead of just one (which she alleged needed replacing or which she was advised by Renault) needed replacing- I am not sure of the exact details-The customer was charged for all three replacements. Before forwarding the customer’s complaint to the boss to handle, the employee added his, less than flattering, personal comment thereto. His comment was along the lines that he hoped the woman broke down and that she could then get her husband to push her to work. The poor fool did not realize that he had courtesy copied the customer on the forwarded email. OUCH! The customer was naturally angered and contacted Talk Radio 702 to share her experience with a few hundred thousand listeners on Tuesday morning. No doubt she has also posted her news on every possible social media site to which she belongs. On Wednesday morning one of the top guns of Renault SA responded to the incident on the John Robby show. He apologized profusely for the behaviour of the employee at the dealership and advised that the dealer principal had been instructed to provide the customer with an apology and to take disciplinary action against the errant employee! He added that the employee in question had already been issued with a final written warning. Lucky employee I’d say. Well done to Renault for taking it on the chin and publicly responding to the complaint. I cannot however help but surmise that Renault South Africa has not yet seen the benefits of using social media forums as part of its CRM strategy. This is a perfect example of where social media could have been used by Renault to address the issue instantly and thereby simultaneously limit any reputation damage. It also again highlights the need for companies to have a social media policy which deals with how any social media crises should be handled. How to be Discourteous in a Courtesy Copy – compliments of Renault SA In today’s world 24 hours is too long to respond. People who use social media regard timeliness as being far more important than getting a perfectly polished answer. Furthermore in the social media world, 24 hours is long enough to cause irreparable reputation damage. Most complaint procedures in companies are too slow given the pace at which information is disseminated nowadays. This screams DANGER in an uber-connected society! Does your company use social media to connect with its customers and monitor what the marketplace is saying about it? If not it is set to miss the proverbial boat. Sadly the company probably won’t even know that the boat passed while it sits stranded.

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