By Thursday last week, I still had no clue of what to write about for this column. Many writers probably face this situation when the blank pages simply refuse to be filled because of a lack of inspiration.
With no shame, I simply asked my facebook friends to help me find an inspirational topic. Luckily enough, I received quite a number of interesting suggestions. One of them asked me to do a series on the best and poorest service providers in 2010.
Wow, this is definitely a great idea as this friend goes further by suggesting that readers join this series by sharing their own personal experiences.
Most of us know that Rwanda has made tremendous achievement on different aspects. We are all very proud that today the country has become a good example on the international scene. Good governance, fight against corruption, investments reforms and many more.
But the fact here is that there are still many issues concerning service delivery in all sectors of business. Unfortunately, we still meet people who have no consideration for customers, who do not respond to correspondences; do not return calls, do not honor their promises, do not respect time, do not listen to customers or rather, have no humility to ask when things are unclear.
But thank God there is another side of the coin. Today there are few service providers who have understood the urgency of this matter and who know how to attract and retain customers by providing high-quality customer service.
The topic on service delivery has indeed become a very emotional one in Rwanda. For the past two years; there has been a serious battle against poor customer service through trainings, seminars, articles, debates, talk-show(s), books and even a quarterly free magazine.
You may be thinking that with all the above, it is obvious that service has improved. Yes indeed, it has improved. Service is better than it used to be some years ago. But to be frank, we are still very far from the level we would all want it to reach.
For the coming weeks, we will be sharing with you stories of companies and people who have made tremendous efforts in 2010. For your information, we will be publishing personal stories based on individual experiences.
Your columnist has had extraordinary good and poor service with certain specific service providers and will be sharing with you her own experiences. By mentioning the names of these service providers in this column, we would be encouraging those who have made efforts and emulating others to do the same.
Let’s all remember that as customers; we also have a role to play. Let’s not just sit there and complain behind closed doors. Let’s rather share our experiences from retail to big corporate; from public to private institutions; from Kigali to upcountry.
Consistent excellent service is a real competitive edge in this economy and in this age. Now more than ever, our service providers should know that they need to find ways to differentiate themselves and offer us service worth the money we pay them.
The author is a customer service consultant and the Publisher of the ServiceMag