Here’s a small tale of woe which I should have written about earlier, concerning Halfords in Bishop’s Stortford.
When I was fitting my Dension ICE>Link into my car, I needed some radio removal tools. I checked around and found pictures of what I needed – flat bladed tools which inserted into slots underneath the radio to release it and allow me to fit the wiring harness.
I rang Halfords in Bishop’s Stortford and spoke to a salesman there, describing my car make and model, the radio and even describing in small detail the type of tool I’d need. I pointed out that I definitely didn’t want the round tools, a bit like the wire from a coat hanger, I needed the flat blade like tools suitable for my car. He checked his stock and told me that he had five sets in and that they were suitable.
So I drove all the way to Stortford.
When I got there the person I had spoken to had gone for lunch, and I was left with some other chap. I described the phone call and he pointed me to the shelf where the tools were, and happily handed me one of the five packs of round tools that he had there. I explained that I needed the flat blade type of tool, whereupon he became vague… “erm… I don’t think we, er, stock those…”
Imagine the conversation after that –
“but your chap said…”
“ah, yes, but he’s on lunch”
“but I’ve had to drive all the way here…”
“sorry mate, not my fault…”
“Do you have a complaints department?”
“Erm… well, we do have some of our own tools you could borrow…”
“OK – sounds helpful – I’m parked behind your store, what have you got?”
“These” (showing me a similar tool to what I described over the phone)
“OK – can I borrow those for a few minutes then?”
“You’ll need to leave a deposit…”
“a deposit – we can’t lend those out to just anyone”
“so let me get this straight – I’ve driven all the way here at my expense, on the assurance of your member of staff, to find that I have been mislead and that instead of you being helpful you want to now suggest that I am untrustworthy enough to want to steal a tool that I need to use for less than two minutes, in the car park behind your store?”
“it’s company policy”
“about that complaints department… I will be sure to ring them, and to let everyone I can know about the appalling way that you have treated this situation!”
So – consider yourselves told… and be very careful if you ever feel the need to go into a Halfords store!