What did I learned from a mere pair of pants?

22 05 2009

The fearful costumers’ unspoken expectations

Well is known the fact that we learn easier from lived experiences than from academic rhetoric. Several months ago, actually on my new job early days, I decided my attire required some intervention so it could match up the expected standard of a corporate environment. Don’t get me wrong, I do not think a specific brand would make me look hipster or worthier of professional admiration; it is just that usual clothes were a little over worn and by investing more than usual on my new attire I would not only pimp my look but would also get a new extended period for them (value for money anyone?). After reviewing my modest knowledge about clothing brands, I decided Lacoste was my best bet: it projects comfort, capability, quality, and status without being out of my league.

So there was I shopping all by myself and trying out a hodgepodge of different clothing until I came up with the combination I wanted: two pair of pants and a nice collar shirt. Fast-forward 60 days. Picture me entering my boss office with a huge smile, feeling secure about what I was going to talk about and suddenly feeling a cool gentle nice autumn breeze on my hip. While smiling, I looked down to see what was the divine source of this gift and dreadfully found out my pants were totally worn out right beneath where my belt went! Geeh! Sorry boss, I would need to talk in a while since I need to grab something to wear over my pants and stop scandalizing the cubicles!

Inspiration: Lintmachine by Evil Erin

Inspiration: Lintmachine by Evil Erin

Enter unspoken expectation number 1.

Somewhere during my assessment on Lacoste’s brand promise I came to grip it pledged quality on their produce, or was I wrong? I thought they deserved a second chance, after all the other pair was still as snug as it was the first day I worn it, haven’t shown any signs of deformation whatsoever and we all make some mistakes from time to time don’t we?My dear wife offered herself to go back to the shop and ask for an immediate replacement. And as you might have already guessed she was told a substitution was indeed called for but …. Oh no, there it was again, that apprehensive word that lurks at the corners for its victims! We had to wash the pants BEFORE we could get the replacement.

Does anyone see the mistake here? Say what again madam? You actually showed surprise when you saw the bad torn on the fabric and the evident way it showed the shabby state of the pants was not caused by misuse. Yet you ask us to wash them –they weren’t that dirty if you ask me- before we receive what we are entitled for? Why? Why do some brands, companies and certain human beings when found in the wrong tend to acknowledge their mistake but at the same time have the guts to make you feel some how guilty? Yeez! Back came SWMBO* with the mix feeling of having succeeded but with the opinion she was cheated.

Enter unspoken expectation number 2.

After two full wash cycles (hey don’t blame us we didn’t wanted the dirty police to turn us down a second time), Marina went back to Lacoste’s shop only to find out she was actually being unashamedly cheated! She was gaily told by the same woman she would have to expect a call from Lacoste telling her if they were actually given us the replacement or not. She told her it was standard procedure and in no way she could have ever suggested the replacement could be made instantaneous since a fabric expert must do some forensic analysis on the torn and state its real cause.

Why do some brands, companies and certain human beings after promising something to their costumer back up and completely change their stance? Where is their trustfulness? Are they playing with the odds someone actually commits to their weird requirements?

Dear Lacoste,

Once I fell in love with you. I came to dream of me wearing your brand in those astonishing landscapes you portray at your tv ads and even thought the crocodile was not only cool but a great mascot to summarize your claims as a brand. But you know what? I learned the hard way you were only an array of shiny mirrors covering  your bad manners and misguided promises.

Thank you for opening up my eyes and letting me learn something new about claims and unspoken promises, I would try to do my best not to fall into your same mistakes. It was good flirting with you for a while, but hey … at close sight you look shabby and even smell bad!

I’ll go back to my usual brand, after all they don’t produce promises they will unmet. They might not be as pricy, don’t have a tv ad or a mascot of sorts; but, their products will endure common use for some few years and the brand and their stakeholders would acknowledge their mistake right on the stop without play or hushes behind my back.

Zara I am sorry, here I am back again.

*SWMBO: She who most be obeyed




3 responses

23 05 2009

I hate having to try on clothes, having my clothes taken off alone in the middle of the day is not my idea of a good time. That is why I preferred Levi’s 501 or 505, because all I had to do was to ask for a 32-32 the colour I wanted no need to try them on, just grab the bag and go home. Who cared if they were twice as expensive as the other brands, they fit without having to get naked in a 1×1 space with a girl pushing you to buy regardless if they fit or not.
Until one day where after buying two pairs of jeans one of them showed problems with the seaming, long story short after letters sent, after many calls and and like two months they replaced the jeans. Why is it that they can’t accept they had a mistake and repair it, I am not saying that they should give me any compensation, just that they give me what I pay for, a good pair of trousers.
Now I am back to the changing room, looking for other brands that look like levi’s but with better costumer relations and half the price.

1 06 2009

Thank you for sharing!!! I also hate to shop around for clothes….. 🙂

15 06 2011

I bow down humbly in the pernesce of such greatness.

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