Cap MetroRail Downtown Austin
Most of you know from reading my blogs, I’m an advocate and huge fan of riding the CapMetro Rail, however a recent experience has me worried that I completely underestimated the CapMetro system.
One thing is true in business; your employees are a reflection of your company vision and your company’s ability to carry out that vision.
It’s all too often I see small businesses not carrying out a company policy or vision that was originally written in the business plan as their Strategic Positioning plan.
For Example, and I don’t want ANYBODY to experience this: Town North Nissan located on HWY 183 near Burnet Rd. – I bought a pre-owned vehicle from them a few years ago, and then I returned to them when it was time to sell it.
The manager absolutely ridiculed me when I mentioned the source I was using to get an idea of market value on my vehicle. They were offering me an extremely low market trade-in value, and I was simply showing them where I got my trade-in-value estimation.
Instead of telling me what source they use to consider trade-in/sell values and getting to the point, they spent 30 minutes jerking me around until I said “Well, I think I should at least TRY to sell this vehicle myself in order to get more value from it first.” At that point, the manager says, “Yeah, well, next time you try to figure out values of your vehicle, use (online source B) because we don’t use (online source A) as our value estimator here at Town North Nissan.”
WOW! He just allowed me to waste 30 minutes of discussion and fiddling with my ipad about values of my vehicle when all he had to do was get to the source of what they use for values so I could better understand their offer?? What a jerk, Town North Nissan!
Notice I referred to him as Town North Nissan instead of his name because not only did he never even mentioned his name, but he resembles Town North Nissan Austin.
He just walked up and sat in the salesman’s seat and started insulting my idea of estimated value, instead of introducing himself as a key leader at Town North Nissan and educating me on policy and procedures for valuations, which is what I was there for.
Worse yet, I was so self-humiliated and frustrated when I left there, I put in an email to the General Manager of Town North Nissan, John Garay, and told him about my experience, which is when I finally found the source of this problem treatment (the General Manager). John asked me “what I wanted him to do.” I couldn’t believe it! Now he wants me to do his job too?
I gave him a solution for resolve in the matter, and then he ridiculed me for it. I told him I never wanted to speak to anyone at Town North Nissan again, and guess what he did… He calls me on my cell phone and leaves a voice mail like a good ol’ boy trying to settle up a score. And then, he throws me on his email campaigns, breaking anti-spam laws! I couldn’t believe it.
What I can believe however, is why people would buy a car from Wal-Mart Nissan versus Town North Nissan. Because customer service is company policy at Wal-Mart, and the management at Wal-Mart carry out that mission every day, every transaction. You might not like dealing with their employees, but you can rest assured that management will handle your issues, and not by asking YOU how. They don’t need to ask you how, because they have company “POLICY” in place for that.
I see this type of behavior in business nearly everyday. Even a real estate agent at ReMax just acted out of company policy, and out of her code of ethics by allowing her seller to not disclose a previous water damage issue. I asked some questions about it, and the agent decided to ignore me. Because of this, and my further investigation, which the agent should have already done, my Buyer client will not be considering purchasing that Austin ReMax listing, which is bad for the seller client, who has no idea this agent is acting like this. It’s unlawful actually, the way this ReMax Austin agent is acting.
ReMax Austin should ensure their agents are up to date with laws and code of ethics, if not company policy alone. It’s truly frustrating for my Home Buyers when this happens, and more so, it’s an extreme disservice to her seller client because this agent has now put her client at risk of being sued later for violating the laws of disclosure, not to mention she has put herself and ReMax at risk since they are considered the knowledgeable professionals here, now acting negligent in the transaction.
Back to underestimating CapMetro though…
I had a horrible experience with the driver of the CapMetro Rail, an issue I would have never in a million years thought could happen. I mean, how difficult is it to be a decent person to train passengers?
I ride my bike into Downtown to catch the rail up to the Domain area. I have a pre-paid CapMetro card and I’m trying to use it to purchase a Rail ticket, however its my first time to use it, so I’m having troubles. There’s something I don’t know here, so I go take my bike to the train to secure it on board while I find the driver and ask if my ticket is good or if there is some way to get this done.
Well, as I approach the door the driver steps in front of me and says “Are you wanting to ride this train?” I said “yes, do you…”
and he immediately cuts me off with a tone of accusation “Do you have a ticket??”
I tell him that I have a CapMetro prepaid card and I’m having trouble getting it to work, and, as his attitude gets increasingly demeaning, he says “Hey man, I don’t know nothin about that; do I look like I know how that ticket machine works? I’m just CapMetro Rail” as he points to his shirt logo.
At this point, with his tone of voice and his treating me like a peasant, I’m wondering if he is just some hooligan with a CapMetro shirt trying to be funny since he said he was in fact CAPMETRO and here I am with a CapMetro pass trying to get on the CapMetro Rail.
Instead, he continues on about how he doesn’t know anything other than that I need to get a ticket in order to board this train, and he tells me I cannot secure my bike on the train until I get a ticket.
His tone at this point is a bit too demeaning for one human to take to another, especially a service driver like this. He was walking away from the train as I was walking towards the ticket booth again, which is a good 30 feet away from the train and I didn’t want to get left behind, so I ask him “Are you driving this train?” so I could ask him to wait for me if so, and he responds with an extremely sarcastic “Yeah I’m driving this train, NO – I’m just a guy wearing this shirt running around pretending to drive trains….” and literally he continued on and on as I walked off to get a ticket.
I couldn’t believe what was going on here. It’s scary to think this man has our lives in his hands now, but I buy a ticket and jump on anyway. Sure enough, throughout the duration of the train ride, he is excessively honking the train horn, and people on the train are commenting about it. I THINK THIS DRIVER IS PISSED OFF!
Here’s a funny side note…. When I was about 20 years old living in San Marcos Tx, I got a ticket for excessively honking my horn, so YES, IT IS AGAINST THE LAW!
Seriously though, it’s very unsettling and CapMetro needs to handle this with a seriousness, because if he is in fact a loose canon like he presented to be yesterday, too many lives are at stake. I know that he should have been relieved from his duty right then when he treated me that way, so I sent CapMetro an email. Hopefully they will handle it.
Also, I should note, there is now a police officer riding CapMetro Rail, and the officer was present. If this driver has a bad attitude because passengers are too much to handle (which I have no reason to believe this) then the officer on duty can handle those problem passengers. No excuses for the way this driver treated me.
The metro rail, and Cap Metro buses, are our public transportation and the public need to view them in a positive light. This Metro Rail driver just ruined my evening by talking down to me and treating me like an idiot or a peasant of some sort. Nobody deserves that.
I want to stay an advocate of CapMetro, because I see greatness in this transportation system; greatness that others need to experience, not like what I went through yesterday. If that man is treating people like this, new-comers certainly won’t be coming back to use CapMetro. I know I won’t if it continues.
In fact, I proved to myself (that evening) that I don’t need CapMetro to make it in this city when I road it all the way home instead of using the rail. Guess what, it was faster too! Here’s my trip from the Domain in North Austin to South Congress in south central Austin.
Truthfully though, I love the CapMetro Rail and Bus system. I just wish they’d carry out their core mission, that’s all!
Oh, and yes I’m the guy that thanks his bus driver every single time I get off.