In a previous post I stated that monopolies are unsuited to delivering good customer service.  With tax season well behind us I can confirm my theory.  My recent dealings with the IRS prove it.  Here’s how:

  • If you are a US taxpayer and you file late you get penalized with additional fees (in the form of interest).  If you file really late, you may go to court.  And if you make heinous mistakes you may end up in jail.
  • If, on the other hand, the IRS is late in issuing a refund, the government invokes a grace period of 45 days, which they call putting an account in “suspense”.  The only suspense here is in wondering “will I ever get my money back?”  Who pays?  You guessed it, the taxpayer by providing the government with an interest free loan for 45 days.  No, this “drama” isn’t nearly as suspenseful as an Alfred Hitchcock movie… although we can draw some interesting parallels to Psycho.

The pivot point is that to deliver great customer service (and not just claim to want to), treat customers as you would want to be treated.  No one at the IRS wants to receive their refund late or be penalized… guaranteed, or your money back!

Double Standards and Customer Service
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Two Ways Silos Enhance the Customer Experience

Silos get a bad reputation in customer service; for good reason.  Organizational barriers prevent information flow among work groups, customers...

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