Gov. Haley orders S.C. state offices to use 'great day' phone greeting

Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011 4:53 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2011 5:26 AM
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COLUMBIA -- An earful of sunshine awaits you when you call the state of South Carolina. 

Republican Gov. Nikki Haley announced Tuesday that state employees must pick up the phone and greet you with, "It's a great day in South Carolina! How can I help you?"

"It will put the employees in a good mood and remind them who they work for," Haley said.
"I know it sounds simple, but in the challenges that we're facing in our state, the one thing I'm trying to prove is that our state is changing for the better - it's positive, it's strong."

Online Morris News Service readers weren't so sure.

"If you are calling an employee of the South Carolina government, it's a bad, bad, bad day," one posted.

"How will they answer the day after a devastating hurricane? Could you imagine someone in Louisiana answering the phone the day after Katrina hit?"

A bit more charitably, one reader said the greeting would at least be "better than a growl."

Associated Press accounts were used in this report.

Reach Sarita Chourey at sarita.chourey@morris.com or (803) 727-4257

Comments (17)

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Jake
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Jake 09/27/11 - 06:40 pm
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What say if there is a

What say if there is a catastrophic event, like a hurricane, in SC and people are calling officials asking about the whereabouts of loved ones?
Also, if the Democrats want to make any headway in SC politics then they need to get a chairman with a better sounding last name.

Willow Bailey
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Willow Bailey 09/27/11 - 07:31 pm
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I agree. while I love her

I agree. while I love her positive attitude, that statement will be insensitive at times. How about a little spin to it along the lines of "South Carolinians are important to us, how may we help today?

augusta citizen
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augusta citizen 09/27/11 - 08:42 pm
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I applaud this, businesses do

I applaud this, businesses do it all the time and government needs to run more like businesses. Who is the customer? The tax payer of course.

dougk
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dougk 09/27/11 - 09:20 pm
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I disagree, ac, government

Unpublished

I disagree, ac, government is government, business is business, as are schools are schools. Each have different goals and objectives and proven models of success.
Though, I sure like Willow's suggested greeting.

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 09/27/11 - 09:35 pm
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“I guess if you say it

“I guess if you say it enough, somebody might believe it,” Harpootlian said. “I bet it is a wonderful day in South Carolina if you get a government check every two weeks and you live in a house paid for by taxpayers. But for everybody else, things aren’t so wonderful.”

That's rich right there. Does anyone else see the irony in that statement?

Riverman1
70617
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Riverman1 09/27/11 - 09:37 pm
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Haley should have all

Haley should have all government employees answer the phone, first blowing a trumpet two octaves above middle C, then announcing, "All hail to our most powerful, the omnipotent South Carolina taxpayer. How may this most unworthy servant of the people be of assistance?" Then bowing to the phone.

eagle
94
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eagle 09/27/11 - 11:27 pm
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Stupid rule and stupid

Unpublished

Stupid rule and stupid greeting!!!

augusta citizen
7662
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augusta citizen 09/28/11 - 05:56 am
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I like Willow's greeting too,

I like Willow's greeting too, doug. Anything is an improvement over the maze of press 1 for this department, etc. Actually any person saying anything to make me not feel like a pest for calling is an improvement.

broad street narrow mind
348
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broad street narrow mind 09/28/11 - 07:31 am
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i like haley's quote that

Unpublished

i like haley's quote that it'll remind employees who they work for. world's lamest power trip.

Techfan
6461
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Techfan 09/28/11 - 07:33 am
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How about simply, " Hello,

How about simply, " Hello, this is the Dept of .... my name is..... How may I help you."

david jennings
540
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david jennings 09/28/11 - 08:07 am
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Yeah techfan,like the person

Yeah techfan,like the person on the other end really cares what kind of day you are having.Being courteous is good but there is enough bs going around already.

Little Lamb
40160
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Little Lamb 09/28/11 - 08:07 am
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Probably that “Freedom From

Probably that “Freedom From Religion” organization up in Wisconsin will file suit and shut the greeting down.

The great day of Jehovah is near, it is near, it is near and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of Jehovah: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. — Zephaniah 1:14

And the angels who kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. — Jude 1:6

For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? — Revelation 6:17

justthefacts
17993
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justthefacts 09/28/11 - 08:15 am
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Dang, some of you people are

Dang, some of you people are cold.

Cassandra Harris
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Cassandra Harris 09/28/11 - 08:53 am
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There is a reason the

There is a reason the separation of church and state are so important in this nation. How did a simple greeting get hijacked into a bible lesson? I hate to tell you this, but the term "great day" is used by atheists and non-christians all the time.

Let SC dictate what it wants, so long as some poor overworked person does not lose their job for not getting it right when they are swamped with calls. Jake hit it on the nail. There will be times with certain agencies (abuse prevention for one) where the greeting will hit a raw nerve. I like the idea of stating which office you've reached, followed by your name, ending with, how may I help you. Nice, clean, professional and neutral.

harley_52
19546
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harley_52 09/28/11 - 10:24 am
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It's a superb idea. When a

It's a superb idea. When a citizen calls a government office the last thing they need is some rude, depressed, sour puss on the other end of the line.

Making something like this mandatory shows State employees she wants them to be polite, cheerful, and courteous and that's a GOOD thing.

omnomnom
3964
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omnomnom 09/28/11 - 11:45 am
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how progressive... kinda like

how progressive... kinda like the "no cussing" law they passed in Kaliphornia

augusta citizen
7662
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augusta citizen 09/28/11 - 04:27 pm
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If nothing else, any mandated

If nothing else, any mandated greeting may remind them that they work for the tax payers, not the other way around.

Little Lamb
40160
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Little Lamb 09/28/11 - 04:30 pm
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Actually the taxpayers do

Actually the taxpayers do work for the government from January to about May 1.

augusta citizen
7662
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augusta citizen 09/28/11 - 04:32 pm
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Got me there, Little Lamb!

Got me there, Little Lamb! Haha

KSL
105945
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KSL 09/29/11 - 01:46 pm
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Kind of reminds me of Mr.

Kind of reminds me of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood.

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