In February, we introduced you to a few of our Guest Book screeners. Just as important to our daily operations is our Customer and Client Service team. These people are the face of our company. Our Client Service specialists work with our 900+ newspaper affiliates, fielding questions and solving a wide variety of technological mysteries. Our Customer Service specialists answer questions and help our customers with their technical problems… and they offer impromptu grief support, when it’s needed. They have to know about everything we do at Legacy, and they have to be able to explain everything clearly and directly. If you’ve ever phoned or emailed Legacy.com, you’ve “met” one of them – here’s your chance to get to know them a little better. We intereviewed five of our CS representatives, and we’re sharing some of their thoughts with you today.
How long have you worked at Legacy.com?
Greg P.: Since the fall of 2002, almost 9 years!
Christine L.: 5 ½ years.
Erin G.: 5 years and 5 months.
Tracie M.: Almost 5 years.
Melanie M.: I will celebrate my four year anniversary with Legacy this May.
What’s your favorite thing about working for Legacy.com?
Erin: Pizza Tuesdays! In all seriousness, I love my colleagues. We support one another. I depend on them to help me with difficult decisions and I am able to help them with the same. Someone here always knows the answer to any question. If I am feeling frustrated, they provide me with constructive outlets to vent. If I am down, they send me silly animal photos and make me laugh. Without them, this would be a much more difficult job.
Greg: The fast-paced problem solving environment keeps me on my toes. Most days, I look up from my work and realize that the first few hours of the shift went by in what seemed like an hour or two.
Melanie: I love that I work for an internet company helping people access obituary and family information important to them, and providing a way for them to communicate to each other or re-connect through the Guest Book. I also love that it is on a global scale where they can reach out whether it’s from 2 miles or 2 continents away. I’ve talked to a soldier in Iraq calling to sponsor a Guest Book, and a brother in Texas watching for his entry so he could tell his sister in Guatemala to print the Guest Book for his family there. It’s exciting.
What has surprised you about the job?
Tracie: The many shades of grief: working in Customer Service, you see people in each and every stage. Some are angry; some are noble; some are numb, and many are surprised by their reaction to their loss. It cuts across all ages, social strata, income brackets: grief is a profound leveler.
Greg: I certainly didn’t expect the staggering growth we’ve experienced over the last few years. We’ve gone from a handful of employees in one office to over 100 employees across the country and globe.
Christine: I am always surprised that I can still be brought to tears by certain Guest Book entries. A husband declaring his forever love for his deceased wife, or a mother penning a poem of unfathomable grief to her toddler son can touch me just as much now as it did on my first day on the job. I am continually amazed how a Guest Book in cyberspace can provide such comfort.
What is the most challenging part of your job?
Tracie: Hands-down, reading emails from parents who have lost a young child, and reading those heartbreaking Guest Book entries. I hug my daughter a little tighter after that.
Melanie: There are a lot of moving parts working in Legacy’s customer service. We have several products and multiple sites we need to be familiar with as we respond to every call or e-mail. We update these products and sites too with enhanced features and new technology, so we have to really keep up to know where to look for which information at all times. We have to also think like the customer so when they call we can determine what they are looking for, where they are on a specific webpage, and how to get them to the information they need. There is a lot going on!
Christine: It is challenging to not take angry customers personally. Anger is usually masking unimaginable grief, and our customers are walking a path that I don’t even want to think about walking. At the end of the day I would like to think that perhaps a small act of kindness I can provide during their dark times can lighten their load just a bit.
What do you wish more people knew about Legacy.com?
Greg: The employees of Legacy.com are without a doubt the hardest working people I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with.
Erin: We try very hard to give everyone what they need and as much of what they want as possible. Our customers and clients are our bread and butter and we really do take that seriously.
Tracie: How very much our services impact those in grief. Just the simple act of writing in a Guest Book connects the living to their lost ones, even if it’s just for the length of time it takes to type out the message. We get so many emails from people who consider the Guest Book a vital part of their day.