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Be The Solution – Corporate Tweetings

I normally have a strong distaste for “motivational” expressions, witticisms, insights and the like; especially those sent down from above in the form of managerial nonsense.  I distrust them and often wonder who on Earth actually reads, believes and tries to live by them.

However, this week I have been reminded of the importance of one such little gem.  The gist of it is

Be The Solution, Not The Problem.

This maxim, this veritable pearl of wisdom applies especially to customer service environments, or when dealing with a customers problem.  It’s hit me twice this week; once including a good use of Twitter!


I recently ordered Sky HD for my apartment, but the engineer was unable to put a dish up on the gable end of my building (right next to an existing dish) because Sky have changed their rules on laying out long ladders on the ground and “flipping them” up against the wall. However I can get a single feed from a communal aerial socket.  This leaves me with half working Sky+, I can only watch & record one channel at a time.

I like Sky and prefer it to Virgin Media and am minded to keep it, but it feels a little unfair to be paying full price and only getting half the service.  I emailed Sky customer services and suggested that if they gave me my HD package for free, or at least reduced, I’d keep my subscription rather than cancelling it as I am entitled to do in my cooling off period.

To me this makes good sense for Sky.  They’ve spent some money sending out an engineer and providing equipment.  At full price they would get £35.25 from me a month.  If they gave me the HD pack for free this would be £25.  If I cancel they get £0 and have lost money installing it.

The response I got was clearly from a foreign call centre and simply restated my problems with additional explanation of how Sky+ worked.  No solution, or even a direct answer to question.  I emailed back and asked for an answer from someone who understood what I was saying.

I got a flat refusal.  It was “Sorry, no can do, cancel if you want.


This morning I saw a friend beating up Sky Customer Services (@skyhelpteam) on Twitter, so I thought I’d have a moan and ask if they wanted to retain my custom; expecting the same “No, cancel if you want; we’re not giving you discount.”

Not what I got.   They didn’t address the issue of discount, but they have offered to get another specialist engineer out to me to try and get a dish up.

It’s really refreshing when large companies with millions of customers take the time to use Twitter in such a way.  It must be more efficient for them too, as I haven’t tied up a call centre for 10/15 minutes explaining; the 140 character limit keeps it succinct.

Who knows if he or she will be able to get the dish up, but I am very impressed with Sky for at least trying to offer a solution.  I really hope it works, as I’d rather have it working than discount… but if it doesn’t and I can’t get discount I’m a little more likely to stay with them because of one little act of “can do.”

Apply some “can do” to your life today!