Sometimes, we can learn as much from watching someone make a mistake as we can from watching them do it right. Although, sometimes, the lessons are just too obvious - we know that falling face first down the hill is not the way to ski, for example.
I was reminded of this while reading Hawk Wings this morning. They posted the story of Apple's .Mac support for a customer who lost their address book. The article is too long to post here, but it's worth a read to understand how not to treat your customers.
And what is most interesting is that this is not an isolated incident - I have dealt with .Mac support at times, and I have found them to be the least customer-friendly organization I've ever dealt with. It amazes me that a company with the design savvy of Apple doesn't realize that processes should be designed to be as beautiful as the interface and appearance of my Macbook.
The learning here is how not to design an interaction with your customers. A thought: are your interactions with your customers designed the way Apple's are? Or the way that Apple's products are?