How We Think

2013 Worst Customer Service Award

…or, Congratulations! Your Customers are Traumatized!


This is the nightmare of a paperless world: arriving at work to discover your files have all vanished overnight. If you’re lucky, you’ll realize the T-Rex outside is wearing a fedora and this is only a stress dream brought on by tomorrow’s make-or-break meeting. If not, there will be no fashionable dinosaurs—only despair.

On this day last year, we were just that unlucky. Cue customer service disaster.

April 11, 2012. 7:37 a.m.:

  • Three thousand files—our business foundation, our whole enchilada—evaporated from our Dropbox account.
  • We reached out to Dropbox crisis control at 1-800-Serious-Lack-of-Digits. That’s right—no phone number.
  • After clicking through a jungle of Q&A, we finally found a contact form. We sent amessage off into the void and waited. And waited. The reply came… six days later.

Cancun. Not pictured: Us.In the meantime, we sipped margaritas in Cancun and waited patiently for our files to be restored. No, wait—we did the exact opposite. With major contracts on the line, we couldn’t afford to sit around until Dropbox (possibly) responded.
In the end, we painstakingly restored our files as needed. One. At. A. Time. This took days—days of panic and hamstrung productivity. Dropbox could have restored those same files in minutes.

The moral:


Be there for your customers when disaster strikes. Even if you care, a support system that keeps customers at arm’s length communicates the opposite. Modern business might rely on computers, but we should still do business like humans.

So pick up the phone. Prove you’ve got their back. No one likes to face a T-Rex alone.