I got a call last night to verify a credit card purchase from Visa. Visa has always been great to work with but I had an experience last night that effected the way I look at the Visa brand. When I returned the call a very nice women answered the phone and asked me to answer a series of multiple choice questions to verify my identity for the purchase. It was a big purchase and I was happy to see that Visa wanted to verify it. Yet, the problem was the Visa operator couldn't speak English well enough for me to understand the questions. I had to ask her to repeat the questions several times.
Maybe it's my own experience of once mis-answering a security question only to spend hours on the phone trying to correct my mistake that made me sensitive to the Visa operator's language skills. Yet, I had to wonder if Visa's outsourced operators literally couldn't speak my language, what other short-cuts had they taken in back room operations and what kind of security did my financial information really have.
A brands value resides in the mind of the customer and the value of Visa, in my mind, slid.