Do You Take YES For An Answer? By Jeffery Gitomer

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I’m at London Gatwick Airport two hours before my flight home to Charlotte. I wandered into the Ted Baker store. I love Ted Baker clothing.
I found a few things I liked, but they didn’t have one of the items I wanted in my size. I was assured I could get it online. Great!
I completed my purchase, and went to the airline lounge to get on my computer and buy the other item. Easy online access, found what I wanted in less than a minute. But when I went to complete my purchase, I could not find the USA as one of the 40 or so “ship to” country options.
So I chose the online “live chat” option to help me buy and here is what ensued:
Chat Information
Hello and welcome. One of Ted’s Personal Shoppers will be right with you.
Chat Information
You’re now connected with one of Ted’s Personal Shoppers.
Karen: Hello I’m Karen, one of Ted’s Personal Shopping Assistants!
Karen: What brings you to our website today?
Jeffrey: Why can’t I get a garment shipped to the USA?
Jeffrey: Nuborn Size: 6 Color: Red
Karen: I’m afraid, Jeffrey, we don’t ship to US at the moment.
Jeffrey: You ship to Bulgaria, but not to the US?
Jeffrey: How do I get this garment?
Jeffrey: I can give you my FedEx account number
Karen: I can understand that. Do you have any relative or friend in the UK?
Jeffrey: What are my options?
Karen: You can get the item delivered to someone who is in the UK.
Jeffrey: You can’t put the garment in a box with my FedEx number?
Jeffrey: How about shipping it to your store in Las Vegas? I’ll be there next week.
Karen: I’m sorry, I’ll not be able to do that due to the security reasons.
Jeffrey: What?
Karen: I’m afraid, it will not be possible.
Jeffrey: What’s unsafe about a sweatshirt?
Karen: I will not be able to place the order due to the security reasons.
Jeffrey: Please explain “security”
Jeffrey: Please give me a phone number of a senior manager at Ted Baker
Karen: We are not allowed to place the order for any of our customers.
Karen: You can call on our customer service phone number 0845 130 4278 Ext 1 between 9am and 6pm, Monday to Friday
Jeffrey: No — I want a direct line to a manager.
Karen: I’m sorry, I don’t have his number with me.
Jeffrey: I cannot tolerate lies
Jeffrey: You have a number — I’ll find it tomorrow — call the manager — and report you.
Karen: Ok, for the stores information of US, please emails us at
Karen: Our team will help you to with the details about the availability of the jacket in the stores of US.
Jeffrey: I don’t want a TEAM — I want a person.
Jeffrey: Please give me a phone number of a senior manager at Ted Baker.
Karen: We are not allowed to place the order for any of our customers.
Karen: You can call on our customer service phone number at 0845 130 4278 Ext 1 between 9am and 6pm, Monday to Friday
Karen: There will be the person who will give you the details.
Karen: Jeffrey, if you want I can help you with some options.
Jeffrey: How about this — I can be reached at 704-333-1112 — have someone call me tomorrow, late or Sunday or Monday — you know what I want — have someone contact me to get the order
Jeffrey: Nuborn Size: 6 Color: Red
Karen: I can understand this Jeffrey and it’s really good for us that you like our products, but at the moment we don’t ship to US.
Jeffrey: You can’t understand anything — you’re a corporate robot that refuses to take “yes” for an answer.
Karen: If you have any of your relatives or friends in the UK or in other countries, they can help you to place this order for you.
Jeffrey: Thanks for nothing, lies, and a lousy experience — I’ve just spent my last dime at Ted Baker thanks to you.
Karen: I’m sorry I couldn’t help you much.
Jeffrey: You couldn’t help me at all.
Jeffrey: Have someone from the US call me.
Jeffrey: Have your boss call me.
Jeffrey: They should teach you how to say yes.
Karen: I wish that I can help you to place the order, but it’s not in my hand.
Jeffrey: Then pass it to someone allowed to think and help customers.
Karen: I’m afraid no body can do that.
Jeffrey: What a joke.
Jeffrey: No one can think or help?
Jeffrey: Pathetic.
Hello! We’re in a recession. I’m trying to give them some of my hard earned money, and they refuse to take it, “for security reasons.” Huh?
Now granted this woman is probably in a call center in a foreign land, has never been to a Ted Baker store, and is reading from a script prepared by people who have no concept of sales or service. BUT they left my money on the table, and frustrated me to a point that I’m telling you about it.
And please don’t miss the point. This is NOT against Ted Baker, although they do look rather foolish. This is a lesson for YOU. How many of your customers are being told “no”?
RULE ONE OF CUSTOMER COMMUNICATION: Tell me what you can do, not what you can’t do!
Want a few more rules of customer service and loyalty? Go to and enter the words LOYALTY FORMULA in the GitBit box.
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Little Red Book of Selling and The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts Internet training programs on sales and customer service at He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to

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