2011.10.21

USPS Fail

After my most recent post office adventure, I’m beginning to wonder if it can be saved.

First of all, I’m a fan of the USPS. I have a PO Box, and I get and send mail pretty often. It works fairly well, and it’s reasonably priced. Its just sort of there and it works. Mostly.

One of the BarCamp Sponsors is located in Germany, and they asked if we could send them some shirts. I said “Heck Yes!” not thinking it would be that big of a deal, and it wasn’t, except for Mr. Cranky Postal Worker.

I managed to leave work on Wednesday around 4pm, had to make a few stops, and realized I could make it to the post office before they closed. I got there around 4:55 and at the time I was still not sure what time they closed. (More on that later.)

There were two people in front of me, and two employees working, but only one working at the counter. Both of the people in front of me had to fill out forms. I stepped up to the desk and was told I also had to fill out a form. By now it was 5pm, so one employee rushed over to the door to lock it so no one else could come in. (Oh, there was also some confusion with another customer about their hours, since they recently changed them to close at 5pm instead of 5:30pm.)

The two people in front of me finished up, and the employee who locked the door had to go let them out as I got up to the counter again. I gave them my form and my package, they asked a few questions, and I paid for shipping my item.

At this point, we’re about 98% done with this whole transaction, and Mr. Cranky says “You know, you should come earlier next time” and I was stunned for a second, and didn’t manage to say “You know, you should go to Hell!” but instead said “Well, by the time I got out of work and drove here, it was almost 5pm” and his reply was again, that I should come earlier. #wtf

Come earlier?!? So… what if there had been 10 people in front of me instead of two? Would it have mattered if I got there 15 minutes earlier? Or, I dunno, what if both employees has been helping people instead of one? Keep in mind, the post office was open when I got there. If they don’t want people coming in at 4:55pm, then they should close at 4:55pm. Find me a business owner who will tell a paying customer (as they are paying for something) that next time they decide to spend money in their store, they should come earlier.

I’ve been told I’m more pissed off about this than I should be. To be fair, this guy has probably worked there for 20, or 30, or, well, maybe 50 years. That’s why he’s Mr. Cranky.

But I can’t help thinking, that’s no way to run a business. And maybe that’s the problem, they aren’t running the USPS like a business.

One Response to “Going Postal”

  1. ZippyNo Gravatar says:

    Or maybe it was just one cranky guy.

    Having seen private corporations treat “customers” like vermin as a matter of policy, I’m not inclined to make too much of this anecdote.

    P.S. Found you via random website dot com. Whee.

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