Peggy is a Hit for Discover and a Great Illustration of Bad Outsourcing

Crain’s Chicago today reports that Peggy, the anti-customer service person on Discover commercials, is a huge hit on TV and on Social Media outlets Facebook and Twitter.

I too think that Peggy is funny, but not for obvious reasons.  “My name Peggy.  You have problem?”, all said in a sweet, “service-oriented”, masculine, heavily accented voice is the epitomy of the worst customer service person most of us experience, so clearly most people relate.

Going beyond being able to relate to bad service experiences, this is obviously an outsourced CS environment and a fabulous illustration of why outsourcing doesn’t work well.

Put people on the phones no matter their skills or location, give them a computer, have them read from a script, and expect great service, right?  People are interchangeable, right?  You can streamline and homogenize the service experience, right?  After all, it’s a transaction, right?

Wrong!  It’s the same frustrating conversation that every service leader has with their CxOs who regularly say things like “bring the cost of service down” no matter the mid to long term consequences.

I suggest that every CxO watch these commericals from a different perspective.  Do you have a “Peggy” situation to fix now before it’s too late?


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