Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Sour Day

Today is a bad day to pick on me, after a terrible experience with a customer while helping my relatives at their sundry shop.

It is a totally different lifestyle for me all throughout my life as I have always been studying Economics especially macro theories.

Many would have thought that I might be doing internship with some investment banks or with any think tank.

Helping out in a Chinese sundry shop is indeed a down to Earth experience for me. A few days into the job, today I received shoutings from a customer who wrongly accused me of overcharging her.

I am merely the assistant and I act upon directives from my elderly relatives who own the business. The receipt stated clearly RM 25.

This lady walked right in today and shouted at me saying "your calculator is wrong" and she said that the receipt is correct but I charged her more than RM 30.

She claimed that the calculations by my grandma with her calculator is correct but my figures, while standing aside to help and double check the calculations, were wrong.

According to this rude lady, she said I charged her RM30++. If that was the case, wouldn't I have told my grandma that she was charging less and making losses?

And she said she had RM 30++ in her wallet yesterday when she walked in to the shop and so, after checking whatever change she had in the wallet after going home yesterday, she came back today shouting at me saying I punched the calculator wrongly and charged her RM 30++

How illogical when ALL calculations at that shop past through at least 2 levels of calculations by two people. Also, money received and returned are mentioned to the customer and passed as a transaction of goods and money before we all say "Thank you, come again".

I was fuming and argued that if the paper said RM 25, how could I go wrong if you paid me RM30 and I gave you a change of RM 5?

She shouted and said that "you charged me RM 30++", an amount she doesnt know what exactly.

I was already boiling. In the first place, if the paper said RM25, would you have paid me RM30++ and what kind of change would I give?

Her arguments were getting more and more irrational. My grandaunt realised that I was already boiling and at a breaking point.

Thankfully for that lady, I was immediately ushered behind to the store room to pack some stuff. Indirectly, my grandaunt wanted me to cool down.

I didnt know what happened at the shop front but I guess my relatives gave her whatever change she wanted.

If I was at fault, I am not the type who never say sorry. I have even debated in harsh and loud voices in competition to hammer my opponents, gave speeches and point out misleading points by fellow speakers and of course entered arguments with other friends.

Right after the debates or sessions and also arguments, I end up saying sorry and make peace with my fellow friends for I know either I was too harsh (I once made a girl from the Opposition team cry with my rebuttal speech by pointing out her wrong and clearly misleading points that caused her team the trophy) or I was wrong in my arguments.

Today's incident was utterly unacceptable. It was a total defamation but I was told to swallow my pride and anger down all because of four words "customers are always right".

What a sour day.

To read the words at my cbox "claimed injustice??" is adding salt to my wound. I am sure that person is a non bumi who does not see and understand the true meaning of nation building.

I think I can also guess that you are a Malaysian Chinese. What a pity to see a person like you so ignorant and shallow minded.

Sometimes, I am advised by close friends and loyal readers not to respond to petty comments like these. Oh well, diversity of opinions do exist.

Maybe I should just leave it, but I will continue blogging about national issues and the Chinese dilemma (which might be related to the comment) later as I am very tired and busy these days.

Thankfully, I get a break on Saturday as I will be going off to KL to meet my buddies for lunch and then zoom off to KLIA to pick my beloved sister returning from Russia.

A Piece of My Mind will comment more later.



shuey said...

I wanted to write on Cbox but it was way too long. =p

It's normal to have unreasonable customers. maybe it's the mindset that customers are always right. Nonetheless, it is through this experience that we realise that it's no easy feat for our family to bring us up. What others perceived as easy money since most Chinese are businessmen can sometimes be untrue. However, like what you said, diversity of views. Each one is entitled to their own opinion. =)

bakhtiar said...

I know this comment came in late but please bare with me.

With my very limited knowledge on marketing, I like to think that the idea of 'customers are always right' only truly works to its fullest extent when the goods/services providers have a set of customer service policy. In this light, at a typical kedai runcit, the pragmatism don't really apply. So I guess unreasonable customers are just, well.. unreasonable. But of course, that doesn't permit them to be rude.

Again, excuse my partial understanding of the 'customers always right' idea