“I try to always put myself in the customer’s position, so I really understood his situation and lack of hope.” – Diane Myers, Customer representative
Keeping the customer at the heart of everything we do is something PSEG Long Island employees truly believe in and no one follows that mantra closer than our Customer Service representatives. As we celebrate Get to Know Your Customers Day, we’d like to highlight Diane Myers, PSEG Long Island employee and a shining example of how compassion and understanding can go a long way in helping a fellow Long Islander.
When Diane Myers started her day on Sept. 21, she anticipated her typical flow of calls ranging from making payments to paying high bills. However, this day turned out to be quite different: The Customer rep took a call that made her realize the important role empathy plays in changing a person’s day … and life.
When Myer’s took “Steve’s” call, she could sense that the Manorville customer was distraught. He had arrived home from work to find his service had been suspended for nonpayment. “Steve had been experiencing financial difficulties but had recently started a new job and was starting to get back on his feet,” said Myers. However, the rep quickly learned that the service cutoff was just one of several setbacks the customer had recently experienced: His car was repossessed the previous week, and he had lost close family members to COVID. There was no one he could turn to for help.
“It was late in the evening, so he couldn’t even go to a Department of Social Services office to file for assistance,” she said, “and he couldn’t take time off from work the next day because his job was too new. This was essentially the last straw for him, emotionally.”
Myers spent at least an hour on the phone with Steve, discussing payment options and providing encouraging words to help assure him that assistance is available. She then consulted with her team lead, Yesenia V., who reached out to Collections to get approval to provide the customer with a few days to make his payment. Demonstrating our commitment to our customers, PSEG Long Island authorized the turn on.
“I try to always put myself in the customer’s position,” said Myers, “so I really understood his situation and lack of hope. I can only imagine, from the little he shared with me, how hard each day is for him,” she said explaining that the customer was a senior with no family left. “I am proud to work for a company that has compassion and takes the time to work with a customer to help get their issues resolved.”
Steve emailed a note of gratitude to the Call Center to thank Myers and PSEG Long Island for helping him. In his note, the customer also took full responsibility for the condition of the account but gave his word that he will make his payments faithfully.
Myers said that talking to customers and helping them is what she enjoys most about her job.
“Customer reps are the first line of contact for customers,” she said. “They often call confused or distressed about the hardships they are experiencing, and it really just takes a few moments to provide resources and an encouraging word to make a difference,” she added. “You never know the power of a kind word of encouragement; it can literally change a person’s day or life. And you never know what the last straw is for a customer, so I try to be encouraging even if the options are few.”
Thank you, Diane, for taking the time to help Steve and everyone else who needs support and assistance! As we recognize, Get to Know Your Customers Day, we’d like to thank all of our colleagues for doing what they do best: provide safe, reliable power while serving our neighbors with compassion and integrity – especially in their greatest time of need.