Last summer I was on holiday in Sweden. During the crossing to Denmark we received an SMS from our provider that the satellite connection was switched on and that calling and surfing would cost extra money (read: a lot). In my case, I had been on that boat for at least 1.5 hours when I received that SMS. Little bit late.


My phone indicated ‘no connection’. Fine, I thought.


At one point I received a WhatsApp message. I answered automatically. After sending it, I thought: oops, satellite. But there was still ‘no connection’ at the left top of the screen of my phone. Then it’ll send it later, I thought.


Back home and still enjoying our holiday, I got my phone bill: 2.5 times higher as usual! I investigated and discovered that I had used the satellite. My own stupid mistake, I thought. But I did not consider it entirely my own fault either. That SMS from my provider was not clear.


I called my provider’s customer service with my hint: the text message that I received (and many customers with me) could be clearer. In combination with the message on my phone, I had not turned off data roaming. It is worth mentioning that tip in such a text message. The employee looked too and could see that it was only about 5 MB, indeed that one WhatsApp message. He was happy with my hint and promised me to hang that hint on the improvement wall to consider it together with his colleagues. And I know they have this wall, which is the reason I called.


He once again thanked me and then said “I cannot give you any compensation, as the costs incurred are too low”. HUH?!! First, I did not ask for compensation. I felt that I should have paid more attention and detested my automatic behaviour. Second, how can an amount be too low? I hung up feeling miserable.


In the CX Game we present different types of questions and assignments, such as drawing assignments, role plays and cases. I think this case is a nice one: how would you deal with this situation and do you ensure that the customer hangs up with a good feeling? I’m curious what you would do in this case.


Babs Asselbergs regularly writes blogs about her own customer experiences and those of others. Babs enjoys the small things that make the difference, but also knows that these little acts of kindness actually have an effect. She believes that if we are more aware of our behaviour and its effect on others, we can make the world more beautiful for both customers and ourselves. Babs is an expert in customer experience and customer focus. Together with Nienke Bloem, she’s founder of the Customer Experience Game – by BlommaBerg.