I had an interesting conversation with my business partner today about how it seems no one takes responsibility for anything anymore. The litany of excuses and disclaimers is maddening – and we hear new ones, along with old favorites, every single day…
“The shipping date on your order is an anticipated ship date; that is just when we anticipate being able to ship your product. It’s a guideline, not a guarantee.”
If you THINK you can ship by a certain date, well, I am going to take you at your word.
“Even with today’s advanced equipment, photographic reproduction of a product can never accurately reproduce color or represent texture.”
OK, sure, I accept that some variance is to be expected but if I buy a lamp photographed with a crisp, white silk shade and I receive it with a yellow-y-looking linen shade, that isn’t a photographic error, it’s just not what I bought nor is it what you advertised.
And my favorite, all-purpose customer service response to any problem?
“Sometimes there are circumstance simply beyond our control.” Yeah, right.
You know where the buck stops for my business? Here –
That’s right – the buck stops with me, even though I do not own a trucking company, or make lamp shades or control the weather, or viral outbreaks or how long it takes a credit card payment to process. It’s ALL my responsibility.
I call BS on that. I am tired of no one taking responsibility for anything. How in the WORLD did our society get turned so upside down? Why the HELL is everything so backwards? I mean,
Why do I have to self-diagnose BEFORE I see a doctor, just to make sure s/he gives me the correct course of treatment for my ear ache, sprained muscle or whatever ailment? I mean, years ago, I went to my primary care physician, complaining of soreness around my navel – he “diagnosed” me as having a yeast infection in my belly button (not even kidding!) A year later – and with a NEW primary care physician – I was diagnosed as having a hernia.
At my last corporate job, every December I was handed a blank “Annual Employee Performance Review” and told to fill out my OWN, personal review, then my supervisor would “go over it with me.” Apparently the corporate mindset was that this exercise would be very good in the whole “self-development and awareness” department. I personally think my at-the-time employer wanted to proactively prevent any opportunity for sexual harassment and personal lawsuits. BTW, I gave myself all 5’s out of 5’s!
When did parents stop being responsible for their children? I saw a kid run UP an escalator last week. Of course, she tripped and fell, busted her lip open, started wailing at the top of her lungs, and the mother? She screamed at the store employee trying to help comfort her child as well as loudly threatening to sue the store. Why, because she is an inattentive, crappy parent with a poorly-behaved child?
And nuts. Don’t get me started on nuts. It seems that every product I pick up now – with the possible exception of milk and cheese – has a disclaimer like this: “This product was prepared in a facility that processes nuts and nut products. Those with any nut allergies should refrain from purchasing this product.” Really? How about the manufacturer just keep its nuts in their proper places/products?
It kills me how NON-responsible the world has become. It disappoints me, and makes me worry about the future. I hope one day soon everyone will become MORE responsible for their actions, personally as well as professionally. But I guess I cannot be responsible for that…