DORA’S DIARY :Do what you are supposed to do
Posted Tuesday, February 5 2013 at 02:00
Are you a customer who does not honour your payment commitments on time? While service providers sometimes mistakenly discontinue services to customers who are not in default, in most cases, it is the actual defaulters who find themselves without service. You would be amazed however, to listen in on some of the exchanges that take place between the defaulters and the service providers in question.
The defaulting customer typically storms into the service provider’s office in a bad mood and is usually uninterested in listening to reason. After an unfruitful exchange, the defaulting customer will leave without making a settlement and will go on to make disparaging remarks about the service provider whenever the opportunity arises.
One wonders whether such customers actually imagined that the goods or services they consumed were free of charge. Ultimately however, the service providers win because unless all unpaid bills are settled, the service simply is not reinstated. Rather than risk the possibility of discontinued services and all the accompanying inconveniences, does it not make more sense to pay your bills on time or if you find yourself in a difficult situation, proactively negotiate an affordable payment plan with your creditors?
What makes some customers losers? Defaulting customers who consume good or services without bothering to pay the related bills make things difficult for both themselves and their providers. For the buyer/seller relationship to function smoothly, customers just like providers must honour their commitments on time.
Moral: Pay your bills promptly
Do you ever consider the impact of some of the seemingly insignificant actions you take? I was pleasantly surprised when I received prompt and polite responses to two different e-mails that I sent to two different people just before 6:00pm last Tuesday. Each e-mail acknowledged receipt of my communication and informed me that because Wednesday would be a public holiday, the writer would not be able to provide the information I was looking for until Thursday.
Receiving two similarly professional e-mails in the same window of time, from two individuals with no connection to each other made me believe that the day when Uganda has more winners than losers in the area of customer service might not be as incredibly far away as it usually feels. With a public holiday the next day, both my e-mail recipients could have simply acted like they had already left work for the day and not bothered to respond until Thursday. My commendations therefore go to Victoria of the East African Development Bank and Mercy of the Uganda Women Entrepreneurs Association Limited for not ignoring my late requests for information.
What makes Victoria and Mercy winners? By responding to an e-mail received after “normal” working hours, they each proactively provided me with the assurance that my requests were definitely in good hands.
Moral: Impress with simple actions