How many times do you ring a doctor’s surgery, school office, bank or wherever, to hear a voice at the other end say the words, “Can you just hold for a moment?”
I mean, how long is a moment anyway? The dictionary definition of a moment is ‘a very brief period of time’ with brief defined as ‘short duration’. But then what is short? Is time, like beauty, in the eyes of the beholder? I’ve been kept waiting anything from a matter of seconds to a good ten minutes, all of which apparently constitute a ‘moment’.
My time is precious, so quite honestly I’d much prefer people to admit that they’re really too busy to deal with my call any time soon, so that I can just cut my losses and ring back later, as opposed to hanging on the line dwelling on all the things that I could be doing.
Worse still are the lines where an automated message tells you that you’re ‘in a queue’ (thank you for calling, your call is important to us, blah-de-blah) without giving any indication of waiting time. I have called some numbers where you are actually given an idea of your place number in the queue, which at least allows you to decide whether to wait or not, so why can’t more companies take this approach?
The worst scenario of all is where you’re kept waiting for absolutely ages, only to be ‘accidentally’ cut off at the last minute, so that you have to repeat the whole process!
Oh, is that the phone? If you could just hold on for a moment …
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