What Customer Service?
by Chief Alchemist a.k.a Wiley Chin - March 16, 2006 Posted: 12:42:52 PM EDT

A few days ago, I got a call from a stranger. He identified himself as the Customer Service rep from my mobile network provider.

I was expecting him to sell me stuffs I didn't want again, like this foreign bank that's persistently annoying me with loans I didn't need. (That one calls for another entry, another day) 

But Mr. Customer Service from telco rattled off a few long, nice sounding sentences which I gathered to mean that, my kind mobile network provider will be giving me a rebate of RM10 for the next 3 months. Oh wow, for once! I'd always been wondering why they spend so much trying to attract new customers when they should spend just a little to show appreciation to those who have been their loyal customers all this while. You don't need to be a management guru to know the sums add up better that way.

But now, they finally GOT IT! They will be nice to their LOYAL CUSTOMERS from now onwards! I put down my phone and smiled. This is good, I told myself. Someone up there in the pyramid has got some cow-sense, after all. WOW!

Barely 30 seconds later, I got an SMS. It was from my mobile network provider again. I thought, hey, they are going to confirm what they told me verbally and thank me for being their customers for so many years.

No such luck.

They are asking me to rate their service. How do their customer service reps score and what do I think of their customer service?

Wait a minute...

The rebate was a bribe for me to score them 10/10, no? This is sad. I think somebody needed a good score, inside there. Someone is trying to manipulate the results.

What do you think?

  1. The company need it to rattle their sabres?
    In other words, a few weeks later, we will probably be told that No. 1telcom have such high score in customer service satisfaction lthat you will do well to subscribe to their network. Forget about any other birds. 

  2. Someone within telco organization is trying to get some mileage for his career. How to safeguard your customer satisfaction survey than to give out some goodies and then ask for a rating? After that, just compile nice score on spreadsheet and pass it to board. Viola!
    Someone up there will say, 'Good job, like I always knew, we are the champions! ICHIBAN!'

You do a customer service survey to find out how your customer sees you. You want to know because you want to improve. That's quite simple. If you call out of the blue and offer a rebate and then quickly conduct a survey the next 30 seconds, you are simply not interested in the truth. 

So now, this isn't what customer service is about. There's no sincerity in this. And no finesse. EVEN IF you want to buy a good ratings, the speed of the survey being sent out after the offer of rebate was bad. It smacked of condescension and a total lack of respect for your customers. 

So, in the end, my regards for my current mobile network provider hasn't improved. In fact, it's gone down. Hey guys over there, we are not kids, don't try that sorts of tricks on us. Please think again if you want us to truly be loyal to you.

RM10 rebates X 3 months - No Personal Touch
=  Good Customer Service?

Cheesy Service

So, you guessed what I score them? 

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Wiley Chin
Chief Alchemist
XiMnet Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

An alchemist of the Internet and marketing strategies, leading the charge to put our creative and software talents into serving companies who are out to slay the global giants. Also known as Chief of Caffeine Consumption and hallucinates between projects. Yes, that accounts for his “giant slaying” stuff.

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