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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Think before you say Thank You

August 30th, Thursday, 9:55 PM, Dhaba Restaurant, Banani-11, Dhaka.

After having a sumptuous dinner at Dhaba...'the roadside cafe', before paying the bill, I asked the person at the counter regarding the Thank You Discount. As I am a 'valued' customer of GrameenPhone and I have been allured by their Thank You campaign lately, I thought to make use of the privilege offered to me by the telecom giant. The gentleman appeared disturbed having found a customer who actually asked for the Thank You discount...he said that the offer was not in place anymore and it has been scrapped. I retorted that GrameenPhone has been promoting many of its partners under this Thank You campaign and your restaurant was one of them...since I saw your name in the list, you are bound to give me a discount. Otherwise I said I would complain to GrameenPhone. After witnessing this unusual demand and conviction from a weird looking customer (me)...he tried to appease me by saying that 'this time I am giving you 10% discount, but let me tell you...GrameenPhone is not keeping their promises, they are not giving us what they were supposed to'. Sensing a victory here, I replied 'why don't you settle your scores with GrameenPhone yourself, why should the customers suffer in between your mudthrowing?' The person printed the bill and gave me 10% discount, with a serious face. I walked away. End of story.


Another day in the life of a Bangladeshi consumer I suppose. Its very much like a rock and a hard place. Look at the syndicate of the CNG drivers. Even though the government has set fixed fares for fixed distances and they are bound to go where the commuters want them to go...they don't go and they go only to where they want to go. You and me...what best can we do? We know the rules, we know the prices, but we are held captive. Similarly look at the offer by GrameenPhone and look at the service delivery by one of its partners. Its evident that the Telenor cashcow has been spending well in advertising and promoting its Thank You campaign, but I hope its expansion mode will not make it lose sight of its partners, who also share some stake to make or break the GP brand name. I hope the GP Thank You team would sort out the differences with their channel partners, so that people like me....who use a GP connection and also eat at Dhaba from time to time, don't fall victim to 'your' problems...after all..I am your customer....and I thought I was supposed to be the king wasn't I? So please don't make me beg for a mere 10% discount at your partner outlets, being discounted by sad-faced partners infact.


So I don't know why GrameenPhone is thanking its subscribers....for using its services or for being refused the Thank You Discount and walking away patiently and amicably?I think the customer are becoming mature and knowledgeable by the day, so think again before you say ...thank you.

4 comments:

Shoaib said...

haha,
that was funny...i totally understand the feeling...and as far as the CNG bit goes, story of my life.lol

Anonymous said...

well....if i'm not wrong one of the 'Values' of Grameenphone is KEEP PROMISES and if thats how GP is keeping it spromises with its partners..i have nothing to say my dear!

Anis Motiwala said...

As a general comment, for the society to attain a healthy customer centric culture, it will come through a demand pull approach only. Meaning, consumer awareness, consumer unity, consumer proactiveness. CONSUMER POWER. All suppliers will be on their toes then.

Anis Motiwala said...

As a general comment, for the society to attain a healthy customer centric culture, it will come through a demand pull approach only. Meaning, consumer awareness, consumer unity, consumer proactiveness. CONSUMER POWER. All suppliers will be on their toes then.