Remarkable service manager and customer care rep
November 6, 2018
A couple years ago, when Santa Monica Subaru was owned by a different company, the service department made some representations regarding a service contract that I had purchased some years earlier. However, at the "new" dealership, the customer service rep said they could not honor the predecessor company's representations, which quite upset me. I am a proud owner of two Subaru's, and have always been happy with the cars and the very strong service offered by dealerships. However, on this occasion, I nearly left the Santa Monica location being frustrated and upset, and casually mentioned this to a cashier in the repair division, Natalie Dionne. To my amazement, Natalie not only looked shocked that someone might be leaving unhappy (suggesting it would be very unusual for a customer of theirs to be unhappy), but immediately asked if I would mind waiting a moment while she took my problem to the general manager, who in turn asked the Service Manager to hear my problem. The Service Manager, Ken Frakes, could not be a better representative of any company. He listened carefully, and immediately recognized that there had been a misunderstanding on the part of lower-echelon employees & that I should be provided the service I had been promised by their predecessor. Something beyond simple courtesy is going on here. First, let me recognize Natalie Dionne. Here's a person whose primary responsibility might be to process invoices, but she noticed an unhappy customer and immediately thought she MUST take steps to resolve the problem. This is truly remarkable; when confronted by an unhappy customer, some low-level employees may shrug their shoulders and say, what can you do. But not Natalie: she expressed great sympathy and asked me to wait a moment while she tried to find a resolution. Any company that wants a thoughtful, energetic, committed employee should hope to clone Natalie. But for her intervention, a long-time customer of Subaru might have walked off unhappy. In addition, the service manager, Ken Frakes, is clearly a thoughtful "let's figure out how to fix this problem" kind of a guy. Somehow, Santa Monica Subaru has figured out how to find employees and managers who are not only competent at their job, but who see the big picture and want to make every person who crosses their threshold satisfied. I almost never write reviews on these websites, but these two employees of Santa Monica Subaru are simply gems. If this is reflective of the rest of the company, I can certainly see myself returning again and again to Santa Monica Subaru, knowing that the Service Department will treat me fairly and will ensure that any problem is immediately and responsibly dealt with.