Marketing guru Seth Godin recently had a bad experience with a KitchenAid teakettle leaving molten gobs of plastic on his thumb.
This was followed by an almost-as-bad experience trying to call KitchenAid to complain.
Godin's advice: "The only reason to answer the phone when a customer calls is to make the customer happy. If you're not doing this...do not answer the phone."
It sounds anthema to many in the call center business--who view busy signals and no-answers as the worst possible treatment for a caller--but Godin has a point. One thing worse than getting no answer is calling a company, spending ten minutes wading through menus then getting a "our call center is closed" message.