If you’ve been paying attention, you’re probably aware of the fact that stuff is inherently more expensive now than it was before. You’ve probably also noticed companies having issues with delivery times, product quality, and even the quality of customer service you receive. The reason? Coronavirus, of course. But surely this is a valid excuse, right?
Well, possibly. When all of this is over, though, it’s imperative that we see a paradigm shift back to something resembling normalcy – including realistic prices.
It’s not that I personally mind paying $16 for 6 avocados from Albertsons under the context of a pandemic. Heck, I didn’t even make too much of a fuss when an AC technician read me the riot act while standing in my garage because I asked them a question (“Is the thermostat you were talking about in the house?”) that made them feel like I was telling them how to do their job. I get that this is a stressful time for the economy and individual employees alike.
But with these kinds of actions persisting, they’re becoming substantially less excusable – especially when COVID is invariably used as a continuing excuse.
Call me pessimistic (seriously, you can), but we saw something similar happen with Hurricane Katrina. After the initial spike in goods required for Katrina responses – something that, while inconvenient, is completely understandable – many noticed that the price on those goods never really went back down.
That, in simple terms, is atrocious.
Using any kind of emergency as an excuse to offer subpar service, overpriced items, and other inconvenient aspects of life may be necessary under the conditions of whatever the emergency is – a meat shortage, a hurricane, a global pandemic – but using those conditions to establish a new norm once operating under them is no longer pertinent isn’t appropriate, and consumers should feel comfortable expecting more decorum from the businesses they frequent.
In fact, the only real excuse for “subpar service” is a shortage of employees – something that is completely reasonable to expect under current circumstances. When these circumstances no longer apply, neither does the excuse.
Companies, take note: A global pandemic is not a free pass. Please – from the people who pay for your products – don’t outstay your welcome on this one.