THE BLOG

Where Founder Fails to be Professional, Lululemon's Customer Service Team Steps Up

11/13/2013 07:15 pm ET | Updated Jan 23, 2014

The general consensus is that Lululemon Founder Chip Wilson's comments last week on Bloomberg TV weren't exactly professional. When asked by the anchor about the yogawear company's see-through-pants fiasco, Wilson didn't admit any fault. Instead, he blamed women's thighs.

"Quite frankly, some women's bodies just actually don't work," he said during the television interview. "It's about the rubbing through the thighs."

Wilson has since apologized in a 53-second video saying, "I'm sad. I'm really sad. I'm sad for the repercussions of my actions. I'm sad for the people at Lululemon who I care so much about, that have really had to face the brunt of my actions."

It's safe to say those taking the heat are those on the front lines of customer service. The company is facing backlash after posting the apology video from Wilson on its Facebook page. With more than 750 comments and 100 shares, the majority of which are skewing negative, the company's reps are playing defense, replying to top comments on behalf of the company.

And good news - those folks are actually very professional.

StellaService Analysts contact Lululemon every day, stress-testing the customer service team on elements of both speed and quality. Among those metrics is Professionalism, defined as "The CSR was helpful and courteous."

Our agents found Lululemon 100% proficient in this metric last month. In fact, the retailer ranked within the top 10 of all companies evaluated daily by StellaService for the metric Stellar Interactions, defined as "The CSR diligently answered the initial questions, anticipated follow-up inquiries and offered supplemental information."

For example, in one phone interaction a StellaService Analyst asked for help finding the right size for a pair of running tights. The Lululemon agent explained that the best way to get the right size is to try the item on in-store and provided the addresses of several locations near the shopper. Going a step further, the agent offered her own personal measurements and the size she normally wears.

The StellaService Analyst on the call noted that the agent "seemed genuinely interested in getting the right tights for me."

Lululemon agents have consistently risen to the occasion. StellaService found that its customer service department was well-prepared for a high-volume of inquiries during the transparent Wunder Under (THE pants) fiasco back in March.

The retailer is rated StellaService Elite, the highest designation available.