This is again from back when I worked in the reservations center for this car rental company.
I was just fresh out of training, probably my first week or so. After a couple of days I get more and more used to the system but obviously still need to look up a lot of things like codes and vouchers etc.
This is when I encountered, let’s call her Mrs Doe.
Next call in my line a lady that sounds a little older, has a very high pitched voice, and speaks in a very nagging manner.
I brace myself for a difficult customer.
She starts dictating extremely fast but every detail I need. Me still new and slow have to ask her back. I can basically hear her eyes rolling so I explain in friendly manner that I am new and getting used to the system and ask her to please repeat. I can hear her eyes rolling even more but whatever.
Nagging voice of Mrs Doe repeats her order slower and I notice that the name she is booking the car for is not her own. Well maybe she is the wife or secretary of somebody. Whatever. During the call, she tells me in what field to put which code, from airport codes to notes to voucher number to frequent flyer, everything. She knows all the abbreviations and where on my screen, I need to put it.
So while I am surprised, I type it all in and start giving her a quote, as our script dictates. Mrs Does cuts me off in the middle of it “Yes thank you, I will book it.”
So I finalize the booking and she hangs up.
Perfect, sale done, call relatively short considering I am still learning.
I turn around to my coworker, who has been there for years, and tell her about the annoying customer I just had on the phone.
After letting me describe the call, my coworker smiles and nods “Mrs Doe, right? usually she books a few cars at a time. She has a business where she books cars for business people. I know she sounds annoyed but that’s just her voice, she is actually really sweet.”
Following this conversation I start noticing something.
Once in a while, somebody on the floor would stand up, during the greeting part of the call, and loudly announce into the phone “Oh good morning, Mrs Doe!” for everybody to hear and then sit back down to complete the order. People would give them a thumbs up or smile or something but I don’t get it. So what if she books maybe two or three cars.
The day comes and Mrs Doe gets through to me again. I am now much faster and fully ramped up.
Mrs Doe does the thing where she dictates really fast and detailed everything. I write it all in, half quote, get interrupted with “Yes I am booking it” and I already want to say a nice good bye when she stops me and says she would like to book “a few more”.
Ok, sweet. I will get closer to my sales target.
So the thing repeats with cars all over the globe. Germany, US, Italy, France, etc.
She proceeds to book 12 (!!) cars within 20 minutes! (For context, 20 minutes of calls might, with a bit of luck, get you one sale in, on a normal day)
From then on, I also got up and greeted her for everybody to know.