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She Did It!

When I worked for an appliance company that helped people over the phone, a customer described how much she hated her washer. She wished she had fixed and kept her old one.

"I'm sorry, ma'am, that you feel this way." It seemed like the least I could do, but she said I was the first person who didn't stop her from explaining. So, I knew it was time to find out more. The first simple question I have is about the paperwork, which says that the machine doesn't wash but sometimes spins.

So, I asked her to listen to the machine so I could figure out what was going on. She had one issue fixed, but the error code remained and the movement didn't stop. They went back and put up a board, but that didn't work either, so they've already moved the date three times. They won't replace it unless technology is there, but technology won't come out. I asked her if they did any tests after installing, and she said that he didn't even call her in.

He just came out to say he needs another part to fix and he's off without answering a single question. She was almost crying when she said, "I live in Brooklyn, New York, where parking is terrible and people are always getting tickets, but I used to call ahead for techs and my husband, God rest his soul, would let them pull up in his driveway." Now I understand what was going on. She was 86 years old, taking care of something that her husband had always done, and he was very sick and about to die. The technicians who came out four times and put in two parts never re-calibrated the unit. I asked her if she wanted to work with me to try to solve this problem today.

She said, "No, there's just too much," so I told her, "I think you can do it." She agreed because the worst thing that could happen is that the tech still has to come out and you don't get fixed. I tried to help her fix it for at least 25 minutes, but it didn't work, and I had other calls waiting. She says, "Give me one more chance!" So I did, and she not only did it, but she also told me each step again so I could remember them. She made changes to the unit. "Ma'am, I think you just fixed your washer," I told her. "Well, I'd like you to wait until a load goes through," she said. I told her to just call and ask me to call her. After almost 3 hours, she called back.

She says, "Hello, Patrick, because of what you said about calibration, I've used less soap." We were in sync: "Right now, I'm on my fourth load, and I just wanted to say, "God bless you, you great man."

"Yes, but I think it's working better now because you helped me help you."

She told me she was putting in her fifth load of laundry, but she was moving slowly to do what I told her, so the motor wouldn't get too hot. She was bragging about me over the phone to four supervisors, which made me a hero without her knowing it.


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