My Bank Pays Me to Wait

My bank has a policy that if you spend more than 5 minutes in a teller line, they give you 5 dollars. Imagine my excitement when, on one of my rare visits to a local branch, I happened to notice the policy (posted on the wall, in fine print) while I was … well … waiting in line.

When I finally reached a teller, 7 minutes later, my eager request for the 5 bucks was greeted by confusion then disdain by the teller. (Perhaps no one had ever stooped so low as to actually ask for the five bills before!) I cheerfully told him that now that I knew of the policy—and of the long waits in the bank—I’d be dropping by regularly to pick up my 5 dollars. (He didn’t think that was nearly as funny as I did.) Of course I eventually did the complex calculation to determine that taking 20 minutes out of my day to earn a probable 5 dollars might not make great business sense. (But, then again, there is something to be said for doing things just for entertainment value.) It’s ironic that the first “positive customer experience” I’ve had at this bank was at their expense. (I’d switch banks, but the local competition appears to be dreadfully similar.) So … how’s your bank treating you these days? Got any customer experiences to share—horror stories or uplifting testimonials?

John OLeary posted this on December 1, 2006, in Service.
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