Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Living in Switzerland > Complaints corner  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #101  
Old 13.02.2011, 23:37
Wollishofener's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Glattbrugg
Posts: 18,978
Groaned at 332 Times in 257 Posts
Thanked 11,715 Times in 6,858 Posts
Wollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Yeah, I'm now a regular Swiss homie - just like LiB!
except that you did not take domicile in Olten
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Wollishofener for this useful post:
  #102  
Old 14.02.2011, 08:28
Nil's Avatar
Nil Nil is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Basel
Posts: 10,356
Groaned at 428 Times in 333 Posts
Thanked 16,045 Times in 6,322 Posts
Nil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Funny, it isn't?

My observation: We do put a lot of bad things on the German speaking side of Switzerland with their behavior and attitude.

But when it comes to language, I feel that it is the french speaking side of the country who act more or less like A-hole with those who can't speak their language...

I can't talk for the whole country, of course. Just an observation made on what I read on this forum.
Reply With Quote
  #103  
Old 14.02.2011, 09:52
dexterd
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Funny, it isn't?

My observation: We do put a lot of bad things on the German speaking side of Switzerland with their behavior and attitude.

But when it comes to language, I feel that it is the french speaking side of the country who act more or less like A-hole with those who can't speak their language...

I can't talk for the whole country, of course. Just an observation made on what I read on this forum.
I am slightly biased because I think Geneva is right up it's own backside and full of it's own self importance but the example I am about to give you may add some foundations to your theory.

We came here because my partner was asked to come out on a secondment to work specifically with a very large international company and also get involved with other international firms that have their Head Offices here or European Head Offices here. She works in corporate tax and deals with English speaking clients only so the post was sold as an English speaking post. Indeed the office by its very nature is supposed to be English speaking because of the nature of the work. And also English is the International language in the Tax world.

On the day she arrived they had a welcome lunch for her and even though they can all speak English way better than she can speak French they spoke in French for the entire duration of her welcome lunch!! When they have meetings they insist on speaking in French at high speed and wont even translate.

When she visits the Zurich office they speak in English and if German is used they immediately translate for her.
Reply With Quote
  #104  
Old 14.02.2011, 10:23
Nil's Avatar
Nil Nil is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Basel
Posts: 10,356
Groaned at 428 Times in 333 Posts
Thanked 16,045 Times in 6,322 Posts
Nil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
I am slightly biased because I think Geneva is right up it's own backside and full of it's own self importance but the example I am about to give you may add some foundations to your theory.

We came here because my partner was asked to come out on a secondment to work specifically with a very large international company and also get involved with other international firms that have their Head Offices here or European Head Offices here. She works in corporate tax and deals with English speaking clients only so the post was sold as an English speaking post. Indeed the office by its very nature is supposed to be English speaking because of the nature of the work. And also English is the International language in the Tax world.

On the day she arrived they had a welcome lunch for her and even though they can all speak English way better than she can speak French they spoke in French for the entire duration of her welcome lunch!! When they have meetings they insist on speaking in French at high speed and wont even translate.

When she visits the Zurich office they speak in English and if German is used they immediately translate for her.
I am not sure if it could count at being on the french side. I'll give you an exemple of the same issue but in an other country. When I move to Turkey, I didn't speak any Turkish beside counting to 5. I worked in a International University where most of the teachers were foreigners and all of them spoke english (beside 1-2 turkish teachers who didn't speak english) ALL the meetings were in Turkish without exception. I would have a teacher who would translate to me until I got enough turkish to understand the big picture.

It was frustrating and very exausting. But I learned very fast. I am now able to hold a conversation about any subject in Turkish. I was mostly fluent after 3 years. (Even if my main teaching language was in english, I was talking a lot in turkish to my students who didn't have much of english skills. It wasn't in my curiculum to do it but I was able and happy to do it to help them being more successful).

I understand your exemple, but It doesn't fit my observations (in my point of view). Exemples of shopping around and having someone behaving badly to a tourist because he can't speak french, yes.
Reply With Quote
  #105  
Old 14.02.2011, 10:59
dexterd
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
I am not sure if it could count at being on the french side. I'll give you an exemple of the same issue but in an other country. When I move to Turkey, I didn't speak any Turkish beside counting to 5. I worked in a International University where most of the teachers were foreigners and all of them spoke english (beside 1-2 turkish teachers who didn't speak english) ALL the meetings were in Turkish without exception. I would have a teacher who would translate to me until I got enough turkish to understand the big picture.

It was frustrating and very exausting. But I learned very fast. I am now able to hold a conversation about any subject in Turkish. I was mostly fluent after 3 years. (Even if my main teaching language was in english, I was talking a lot in turkish to my students who didn't have much of english skills. It wasn't in my curiculum to do it but I was able and happy to do it to help them being more successful).

I understand your exemple, but It doesn't fit my observations (in my point of view). Exemples of shopping around and having someone behaving badly to a tourist because he can't speak french, yes.
It's not the same issue. Turkey and Switzerland are very different countries. Switzerland by its very nature actively encourages international organisations to relocate here and to bring it's largely English speaking skilled workforce. I wouldn't expect to move to Turkey and to find many people that could speak English. And this thread isn't about learning a language. We have both made efforts to learn French. This thread is about politeness and attitudes towards English speaking people.

Employing English speakers and then isolating them on their first day of a new job by refusing to speak to them in their language when you speak that language really quite well is downright rude and ignorant.

But the point that I was making is that even though the staff in the Zurich office are mostly Swiss German they make the effort and dont have the same attitude about speaking other languages.

What I would say to the OP though as friendly advice is to at least learn the French for do you speak English and when someone greets you in French reply in French. You have at least then made an effort.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank for this useful post:
  #106  
Old 14.02.2011, 11:12
Nil's Avatar
Nil Nil is offline
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Basel
Posts: 10,356
Groaned at 428 Times in 333 Posts
Thanked 16,045 Times in 6,322 Posts
Nil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond reputeNil has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
It's not the same issue. Turkey and Switzerland are very different countries. Switzerland by its very nature actively encourages international organisations to relocate here and to bring it's largely English speaking skilled workforce. I wouldn't expect to move to Turkey and to find many people that could speak English. And this thread isn't about learning a language. We have both made efforts to learn French. This thread is about politeness and attitudes towards English speaking people.

Employing English speakers and then isolating them on their first day of a new job by refusing to speak to them in their language when you speak that language really quite well is downright rude and ignorant.

But the point that I was making is that even though the staff in the Zurich office are mostly Swiss German they make the effort and dont have the same attitude about speaking other languages.

What I would say to the OP though as friendly advice is to at least learn the French for do you speak English and when someone greets you in French reply in French. You have at least then made an effort.
Apparently, you know not much about Turkey. Second, if it is what you expect from people here, you'll be disapointed. Third, by your answer, I wouldn't be nice to you either to speak your language...

Maybe you should be a bit nicer, that won't hurt.... By calling people rude and ignorant, you are not doing yourself a favour to get some sympathy from them, don't you?
Reply With Quote
  #107  
Old 15.02.2011, 23:00
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: At home
Posts: 4,167
Groaned at 208 Times in 133 Posts
Thanked 6,403 Times in 2,719 Posts
Faltrad has a reputation beyond reputeFaltrad has a reputation beyond reputeFaltrad has a reputation beyond reputeFaltrad has a reputation beyond reputeFaltrad has a reputation beyond reputeFaltrad has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
What I would say to the OP though as friendly advice is to at least learn the French for do you speak English and when someone greets you in French reply in French. You have at least then made an effort.
Made the effort? Not necessarily. Having only five words of French including greetings may well be perceived as plain lazy arrogant "I don't bother it's your duty to learn English anyway" attitude, even if you do not mean that way at all. "Effort" is much more than that in many people's dictionary.
Just warning you.
Reply With Quote
  #108  
Old 16.02.2011, 09:43
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: -
Posts: 1,640
Groaned at 26 Times in 22 Posts
Thanked 2,932 Times in 1,202 Posts
Russkov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond reputeRusskov has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Maybe you should be a bit nicer, that won't hurt.... By calling people rude and ignorant, you are not doing yourself a favour to get some sympathy from them, don't you?
You have a habit of concentrating more on whether people's feelings get hurt than on the content of the discussion at hand, don't you? The adjectives came with an explanation: "Employing English speakers and then isolating them on their first day of a new job by refusing to speak to them in their language when you speak that language really quite well is downright rude and ignorant." In this case he's right.

All the French-speaking people in my office made the effort to speak to newly-arrived English-speaking employees, especially during the first few months. Even when surrounding conversations were in French, we always translated if they seemed lost or interested. If there is even one employee who doesn't speak French at a meeting, the meeting is held in English.

If you're an international organisation or primarily English-speaking company, I wouldn't expect anything less. You don't encourage employees to emigrate to foreign country (I would assume because you need their know-how and appreciate their skills) and then leave them out to dry. That is rude and ignorant.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Russkov for this useful post:
  #109  
Old 16.02.2011, 09:59
grumpygit's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: geneva
Posts: 1,476
Groaned at 29 Times in 16 Posts
Thanked 1,508 Times in 695 Posts
grumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Try the Pretty Woman approach. Go back to him in hour or so later and say in English " big mistake you made , HUGE , I just spent 10.000 ch with another sales person " as nothing hurts the peope more than lost money.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank grumpygit for this useful post:
  #110  
Old 16.02.2011, 10:04
amogles's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,361
Groaned at 338 Times in 274 Posts
Thanked 26,263 Times in 11,000 Posts
amogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

A lot of the remarks that have been made here about attitude and service and not expecting everybody to do English are correct.

However, please also bear in mind that nobody grows up desperately wanting to work in IKEA. People who work in IKEA and most liklely there because nobody else would hire them. IKEA people are a bit like IKEA products. They don't cost much, they don't last long, there's always a screw that's loose, and they come to pieces when you handle them roughly.
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank amogles for this useful post:
This user groans at amogles for this post:
  #111  
Old 16.02.2011, 10:35
Suisse2008's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Genf/Waadt
Posts: 298
Groaned at 6 Times in 5 Posts
Thanked 262 Times in 134 Posts
Suisse2008 has earned some respectSuisse2008 has earned some respect
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Funny, it isn't?

My observation: We do put a lot of bad things on the German speaking side of Switzerland with their behavior and attitude.

But when it comes to language, I feel that it is the french speaking side of the country who act more or less like A-hole with those who can't speak their language...

I can't talk for the whole country, of course. Just an observation made on what I read on this forum.
I strongly disagree. The politeness of the average Swiss toward anglophones are not that dependent on the national language basis. And the politeness varies tremendously based on skills, upbringing, etc.

The situation is unique in Geneva as compared to the rest of Switzerland. The sales persons--who are in general monolingual--will more often encounter English-speakers who can be quite arrogant. It's not an excuse for the bad behaviour of the IKEA salesman, but the demand of English-ability does tax the patience of many monolingual Genevois workers.

If the OP were to go to stores in Vaud or francophone Valais where there are far fewer anglophones, he would encounter the same level of politeness as is found in the rural German cantons.
Reply With Quote
  #112  
Old 16.02.2011, 10:39
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Zug
Posts: 693
Groaned at 25 Times in 21 Posts
Thanked 781 Times in 358 Posts
xkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Try the Pretty Woman approach. Go back to him in hour or so later and say in English " big mistake you made , HUGE , I just spent 10.000 ch with another sales person " as nothing hurts the peope more than lost money.
Unlike the Pretty woman scenario or people at some of their competitors salespeople at IKEA do not work on a commission.
Reply With Quote
  #113  
Old 16.02.2011, 10:51
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Zug
Posts: 693
Groaned at 25 Times in 21 Posts
Thanked 781 Times in 358 Posts
xkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
However, please also bear in mind that nobody grows up desperately wanting to work in IKEA. People who work in IKEA and most liklely there because nobody else would hire them. IKEA people are a bit like IKEA products. They don't cost much, they don't last long, there's always a screw that's loose, and they come to pieces when you handle them roughly.
Groaned you because your statement - while not unfunny - does insult some 120.000 employees, many of which do like their job a lot. And you may want to learn about their standing as an employer - pretty well for a retailer:
Top 100 companies to work for 2007: IKEA North America http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortu...pshots/96.html
Top employers Germany: no.21 in 2009, no.18 in 2010 http://www.manager-magazin.de/untern...5922-2,00.html

Last edited by xkcd; 16.02.2011 at 11:07.
Reply With Quote
The following 4 users would like to thank xkcd for this useful post:
  #114  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:07
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: vaud
Posts: 87
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 88 Times in 39 Posts
swiss bill has earned some respectswiss bill has earned some respect
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

It's not just a level of fluency in French, it's the uneven level of service support you will find among service providers. I have been living in Switzerland for about 18 years and can of course speak French, but I am sometimes surprised.

Just some observations - Media Markt is appalling, I recently bought a boxed sound card (among a lot of other things) - got in home found the card missing, was treated like a crook by 4 different salesmen when I complained (but eventually got a card).

Migros is overall okay, but Migros Brico is risky. Jumbo good, and Coop has greatly improved. I never visit Ikea as I can't find the way out . But Swisscom has amazingly improved, I am very impressed, but then they came from zero.
Reply With Quote
  #115  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:12
grynch's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Geneva/Vaud
Posts: 4,945
Groaned at 50 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 5,199 Times in 2,354 Posts
grynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
But Swisscom has amazingly improved, I am very impressed, but then they came from zero.

when I got my new iPhone a few months ago I asked the swisscom clerk to move my contacts from the old phone to the new one ( different type of sim card ) and he complained to me that I had too many contacts.... it was a lot of work
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank grynch for this useful post:
  #116  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:16
ximix's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: UK (formerly Zurich)
Posts: 2,098
Groaned at 22 Times in 21 Posts
Thanked 2,315 Times in 1,179 Posts
ximix has a reputation beyond reputeximix has a reputation beyond reputeximix has a reputation beyond reputeximix has a reputation beyond reputeximix has a reputation beyond reputeximix has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
... many of which do like their job a lot. And you may want to learn about their standing as an employer - pretty well for a retailer.
I agree. Overall I understand that they are a very family-centric employer and good to their staff. This is the impression I have been left with from conversations with sales personnel during visits there.
Reply With Quote
  #117  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:26
amogles's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,361
Groaned at 338 Times in 274 Posts
Thanked 26,263 Times in 11,000 Posts
amogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
Just some observations - Media Markt is appalling, I recently bought a boxed sound card (among a lot of other things) - got in home found the card missing, was treated like a crook by 4 different salesmen when I complained (but eventually got a card).
While I have my issues with Media Markt and am certainly no fan, at least in Media Markt you can often negotiate some price cut on more expensive items. IKEA doesn't do that, ever. I think that this reflects how management sees and trusts their employees and their ability or otherwise to make the right decison.
Reply With Quote
  #118  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:29
JPZ JPZ is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Basel
Posts: 178
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 129 Times in 69 Posts
JPZ is considered knowledgeableJPZ is considered knowledgeableJPZ is considered knowledgeable
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

To the OP, was this your first visit to the store? Seems kind of harsh to judge the service of a store on one bad experience. You seem to say in your post that everything was sorted, but you still put in a "formal complaint".....THEN you ask people if it is common. Doesn't this seem a bit over the top?

I think each of us here have had bad service in a store before, and not only in places where language is or can be an issue. When that happens to me, I either don't go back or I go back another time and ask a different sales person.
Reply With Quote
  #119  
Old 16.02.2011, 11:40
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Zug
Posts: 693
Groaned at 25 Times in 21 Posts
Thanked 781 Times in 358 Posts
xkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond reputexkcd has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
While I have my issues with Media Markt and am certainly no fan, at least in Media Markt you can often negotiate some price cut on more expensive items. IKEA doesn't do that, ever. I think that this reflects how management sees and trusts their employees and their ability or otherwise to make the right decison.
You really do not have the faintest idea about IKEA (and no, I don't work for them). A few years ago the wife of the then prime minister of Saxonia in Germany went to an IKEA store and demanded a discount, because she was the wife of the Prime Minister. The employee and the store manager stood their ground, the story became public and the Prime Minister had a lot of egg on his face. He left office rather soon after this incident. IKEA was lauded for their stance nationwide.
Reply With Quote
  #120  
Old 16.02.2011, 15:12
amogles's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,361
Groaned at 338 Times in 274 Posts
Thanked 26,263 Times in 11,000 Posts
amogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rude IKEA salesman

Quote:
View Post
You really do not have the faintest idea about IKEA (and no, I don't work for them). A few years ago the wife of the then prime minister of Saxonia in Germany went to an IKEA store and demanded a discount, because she was the wife of the Prime Minister. The employee and the store manager stood their ground, the story became public and the Prime Minister had a lot of egg on his face. He left office rather soon after this incident. IKEA was lauded for their stance nationwide.
Yes, I have heard that story. While the governor's wife was definitely arrogant and deserved to be shamed, IKEA didn't need to get an attitude about it either as twisting the fact that they don't empower employees into something positive is a tad cynical IMHO. If they'd only treated the wife of the governor this way, that would be cool. But they treat all customers this way.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank amogles for this useful post:
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Why people in this forum can be so rude!!! Newmarie Forum support 131 14.05.2011 13:18
Who says the English aren't rude? Aquanexus International affairs/politics 23 25.02.2010 18:32
EF team getting rude Zeynep Complaints corner 56 02.10.2009 15:32


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 18:49.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0