a lonely headset

Call Me Brenda: Dispatches from the World of Customer Service

by Mary Beth Vanderswan Author

Mary Beth works as a customer service representative, answering calls made to a giant corporation's 1-800 number. You know, the kind of calls you make when you're having a problem with your bill or your service... never when you're feeling happy, calm, or patient. She talks to an average of 30-40 people a day, and she brings us the highlights, the lowlights, the mundane moments, and all the names they call her... most commonly, for some reason, "Brenda." Lots of call logs are interspersed with more in-depth treatises on creepers, her customer survey responses, some common themes in inappropriate things customers say, and a customer service bingo board. A fascinating and good-humored peek behind the scenes of a job most of us only see the other side of.