These days systems and policies have become more important than customers. I had an experience of my own today with one of the leading diagnostic center in Chennai. Myself and my wife had to take few tests and we went to this leading diagnostic medical center. We provided them the list of tests we want to take and they took a note of it and provided us the bill. This is a usual procedure of the center to provide the bill even before you take up the service and at this point in time, we haven’t taken up their services yet. When the bill was provided to us, we realized that few of the tests are supposed to be taken only in a particular hospital and not in the diagnostic center and we have completely forgot about it when we provided the list to the receptionist. On realizing our mistake, we informed the receptionist and requested that some of the tests needs to be canceled as they were supposed to be taken only in a particular hospital to which the receptionist reacted in rude manner and told us that it cannot be canceled. She went ahead and started blaming us saying it was our fault and we should have checked twice before we told them about the tests to be taken. I told her that we have not yet taken the tests and the bill has just been generated so it shouldn’t be that difficult to cancel few of those tests in the system. She told us that they don’t have an option to cancel and the system does not allow it. I told her that I want to meet the manager and I explained the whole thing to the manager and to my surprise he told me that his receptionist is right and it is a policy that once the list is provided to them it cannot be canceled. When I asked them that isn’t a customer needs more important than their policy, he told me that he has to go by the system and not by the customer needs.
After a huge argument and they agreed to remove those test but made it look like he is giving me a charity on the refund. He thinks he has won by showing his power and attitude to the customer. What an idiot? what he does not know is that I am not going back to the center even again so he lost a customer for ever and the worst part it, I have been telling all my friends and family members about the bad experience with the center and for sure they are not going to go to the center ever again. Now I am writing about it and people who read with not go as well. Eventually he lost at-least 25 customers because of following his system instead of understanding the customer needs. We do the same at our work as well. Lot of times, we don’t understand the customer needs and would want to go by system and policies. I am not suggesting here to break the rules but to see the possibilities of understanding and helping the customers where ever possible within logic. Systems and processes were supposed to make it easier for the businesses to serve customers better not use it as a limitation to provide bad service. I am sure you have had similar experiences however even then we continue to do the same to our customers. Motive is to make that few extra bucks instead of making the customer happy. what we all don’t understand is that a bad experience for a customer is more expensive than the little extra you make on that deal. Customer is our boss and he pays our salary and not the systems. Business exists only to serve customers and then make profit, if you had noticed, customers comes first only then profits.
My request is, please do the best you can to make customer happy and make them have a beautiful experience which they will tell their friends and family through which you can gain more customers. Make customers more important and not your systems and internal policies.