Great Moments In Customer Service History brings you for the first time ever, the epic story of the world’s first hold music.
It was the early 1900’s, and both the telephone and mail ordered consumerism were in full swing in ‘Murica. With them came the need for people to be able to call companies and complain about anything and everything. The companies responded by setting up call centers filled with poorly paid operators to take any call, no matter how ridiculous. Those operators needed to be able to put a call on hold to complain to co-workers about how horribly they were being treated or laugh hysterically at callers’ predicaments. Businesses soon realized if they didn’t want their staff to go insane they had to give employees occasional breaks during calls. Thus, the hold button was invented. Knowing they couldn’t just have dead air, it was decided music should be playing while customers were holding. The rest, as they say, is history.
They called themselves The Next Available Operators. Today some still say they were the most dedicated musicians to ever pick up instruments. No one before or since had displayed their level of endurance and commitment to the music. About 25 in number, they played relentlessly, 24 hours a day, subbing in and out as each musician reached total exhaustion. One guy would fall off his chair and another guy with the same instrument would just jump in his spot and continue right where he left off. The music was wistful, pleasant and wonderfully soothing. At the appropriate times of year they played holiday tunes or patriotic numbers. They arranged themselves in a circle around a large microphone placed in the center of the room. At first, callers could hear the sound of bodies falling to the floor occasionally while on hold. This problem was solved by placing carpet and pillows on the floor to mute the musicians’ collapses.
Upon calling, customers would hear “Please hold for The Next Available Operators” then be patched into a line dedicated to the group’s nonstop performance. It was the first hold music in history. Eventually they pressed a phonograph record called “Operators Are Standing By.” It was the best selling and longest hold music record of all time. They quickly became so successful they could be heard everywhere. Shops, elevators and even train stations. Virtually every business began piping the glorious hold music into customers’ ears. Thus began many years of subliminally keeping customers calm and optimistic despite constant disappointment at the poor service they routinely receive.
This has been another Great Moment in Customer Service History. Join us next time as we explore the origins of the Customer Service Desk and how it revolutionized retail shopping in ‘Murica.
Hospital Cat is a daytime talk show run by and for animals kept as pets (done with original puppets), focusing on their health and wellness under the care of people, and filmed in front a a live human studio audience.
The host, Hospital Cat, is a world renowned veterinarian and author. He is also a recovering catnip addict who was once in dire straits but turned his life around and became a star TV doctor.
One episode would focus on the emotional and psychological impact of a dog being neutered, complete with a teary on-air breakdown (think Dr. Phil meets the pet/animal world). There would also be some underhanded poking fun at the American healthcare system represented by the ever rising cost of pet prescription medicine, of course.
There would be a segment featuring a Chinese panda couple who has decided they don’t want children but live in a zoo that keeps trying to force them to reproduce. Other guests would include a chicken traumatized by having her eggs continually taken from her, a skunk whose glands were removed so he could be a family pet, and a Snickerdoodle (or whatever they’re called) designer toy breed dog who is having an identity crisis.
There would be clips of audience member questions taken from TV shows like Dr Oz or Dr Phil. I think it would be funny to juxtapose highly civilized, progressive animals (think the Geico Cavemen) against the rather crude and uncivilized humans in the audience.
Accessorcize is America’s favorite brand new exercise craze that’s sweeping the nation! It’s a revolutionary method to getting a killer workout while doing something you love…shopping!
First, select a bracelet. Put it on your wrist, and put your arm up as you twist your hips toward your boyfriend and say “how does it look?” Repeat for 3 sets of ten, then put a bracelet on your other wrist and repeat. It’s that easy!
Never look sweaty and unattractive while working out again!
Our helpful step by step instructional DVD will show you such techniques as “This Belt Is Too Tight” and “Does This Hat Look Cute?” Get both the self validation you want and the exercise you desperately need in seconds! Why waster your time spending hours in a hot sweaty gym lifting heavy stuff… Gross! Accessorcize is the only fitness program that is no pain, all gain!
But that’s not all. Call now and we’ll include a week’s supply of Thin-A-Min absolutely free! Thin-A-Min, America’s greatest weight loss miracle solution, uses state of the art nutritional supplement science to keep you feeling great and losing those unsightly pounds. Once you try it you won’t be able to stop feeling unstoppable! All you pay is shipping. Offer not available in states where Thin-A-Min has been banned.
So what are you waiting for? Don’t be the last one to figure out what everyone else already knows. Start Accessorcizing today!
In a corporate office’s training room, a trainer becomes obsessed with a trainee named Erin who was the best trainee he’s ever had. Suddenly, after only 3 days of training Erin disappears. The trainer repeatedly asks the other managers if they’ve heard from her, but apparently Erin has found another job and did not give notice or any explanation upon leaving. The trainer is heartbroken, and goes crazy, insisting Erin is coming back. He won’t let anyone touch her former area in the training room, including her highlighter and post-it notes. He keeps telling the other trainees “If Erin were here she’d know the answer” and “Erin could show you guys a thing or two about that.”
One day the other trainees come in the training room to find at Erin’s computer a wreath around a pixelated image of Erin’s face. The trainer had bought Erin’s old training badge from another employee who found it in the parking lot where Erin had tossed it when she left. He managed to blow up the tiny headshot on the badge and print it on an 8 by 10. Below the image were the words “Erin – Aug 5, 2015-Aug 8, 2015.” in beautiful calligraphy.
Later that day a trainee discovers an error needing fixing and it was made by Erin. The trainer loses it. He makes up excuses for how the error may have not been Erin’s fault. He is totally outraged by the notion that Erin could have made a mistake.
Cut to a scene of the trainer on his lunch break outside in the corporate office park and while he’s eating his sandwich he spots a woman he’s convinced is Erin among the other corporate types on their way to and from their office buildings. He tosses the sandwich and is off running, calling her name, desperately shoving people out of the way. He narrowly misses his chance as the auto-locking door of her office building slams shut behind her. Grabbing a man’s badge and swipes himself into the building in a crowd of the woman’s coworkers. He’s fiercely struggling to catch up to her but can only see the back of the woman’s head.
Finally he’s right behind her. Right at the second he’s about to get her attention two firm hands grab his shoulders as the security guard behind him pulls him, dragging him backwards. The woman, sensing commotion behind her, turns around. The trainer’s face drops at the realization it isn’t his precious Erin. His body goes limp, and the security guard continues to drag him backwards down the hallway. He is physically thrown out the front door by the guard and falls down some steps outside as it starts to rain. On his knees he throws his arms up and looking to the sky, getting poured on, he screams “Errriiiiiiinnn!!!!”