Sunday, December 03, 2006

When employees screw up....

My partner and I contracted with our favorite construction company to tile our bathroom while we were away. Now there are five of us - when we have the kids - and only one bath so having it done while we all were away was critical.

She chose the tile while I was away and it was to be ordered and delivered on Monday according the 'tile guy' at the store. He took our money and promised that he wouldn't run the batch until the tile was ordered and confirmed.

Imagine our surprise when we checked our account that evening and saw that the funds had already been removed! We figured that he had simply forgotten to confirm that the tile would be delivered as expected....

The next day he, I'll call him Jason, called and said that the tile hadn't made it on the truck and wouldn't be available until Wednesday of the week we were to be away. this would give our contractor only 2 days to tile the bath surround and floor. Our contractor assured us that he'd make it work for us.

Then Jason called again and said that he was wrong, the tile we had ordered wouldn't be available until sometime in december. It was just the contrasting tile, however, so we chose another trim. This resulted in a substantial refund because the new trim was less expensive.

We left for our vacation and assumed that all would be well. But it was not to be. Jason, it seemed, had not ordered enough floor tile. Our contractor let him know on Wednesday - shortly after picking up the order. The contractor called Jason at least once more on Friday.

Jason called us on Saturday as we were on our way home. He took complete responsibility for the snafu and assured us he'd get the tile to us the following Wednesday. We'd planned a trip the following weekend to visit the kids in Kansas, so it was going to work out.

Monday afternoon Jason called and said "I can't order this tile without payment, you know." We were flabbergast. We thought he'd ordered the tile already. As he hadn't, it wouldn't be on the Wedneday truck, it would need to wait for the following Monday.

If I'd been Jason's manager, I would have stepped in at this point. I would have assured the client that the error was in hand, the tile had been ordered, and that we (the flooring company) would do whatever was necessary to make installation work for us and our contractor.

Instead, Jason continued to flounder, refusing to offer to compensate us for our night(s) in a hotel. He maintained that a good contractor could get the toilet pulled, the tile laid, grouted and sealed with in one 8 hour day.

We've pushed back and are ready to do what we need to to get our tile installed. What would you have done if you'd been Jason's manager?


At 12:01 PM, Blogger Meg in Nelson said...

Sack him.


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