entries filed under 'customer service' tag:
posted by Odin on May 14, 2009
'DSC_0507' by g.h.vandoorn, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License
So I haven't blogged in a couple weeks, mainly because I've been recovering from a wild weekend in Amsterdam.
Last week, after more than a year spent in Paris, I finally obtained my "carte de séjour", the official government document that allows me to live and work in France. The process was painstakingly long, convoluted and filled with mishaps. My experience testifies to all the jokes and stereotypes regarding France's heavy and inefficient bureaucratic system.
After the dust has settled, I am now able to compare my French experience with that of the two other countries I immigrated to or lived in temporarily: Canada and the United States.
To sum up, there is NOTHING like the North American "service" and "efficiency" mentality! In France, whether it's in dealing with government agencies, customer service reps, restaurant waiters, I have been serviced by slow, inefficient, error-prone, rude and unhelpful people, for the most part. I really miss being greeted nicely on the phone, or having a friendly and talkative waiter come to my table for a chat or just to find out how my meal is going.
Granted, there is a flipside to this argument: employees in France (especially in the public sector) pretty much have their job for life and it's near impossible for them to get fired. On the other hand, labor contracts in North America are much more flexible, so one might say that those "friendly" and "efficient" Americans and Canadians are only so because otherwise they would lose their job.
Regardless of their motives, I would still rather receive prompt and courteous service. With all the unemployment in France, these people should be glad and thankful they have any work at all! Not to mention the long list of social benefits to which they are entitled!
Personally, I'm just glad I don't have to deal with the French government anymore, for a while at least!
about the blog
MTLRants© is Seek Odin's brand new blog, bringing you entries from our staff and other contributors. The blog will cover topics and issues related to SeekOdin's central themes. Mostly, it will deal with the difficulties and frustrations of dealing with service-related businesses in Montreal.
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