Pato confronts staff after low client satisfaction index report
On the back of Covid-19 pandemic, losing clients is not something to be taken lightly, and when the boss said the satisfaction index had dipped, Pato had to move with speed to address the concerns.
At the crack of dawn on Wednesday, Pato was summoned to CEO Ben’s office. Things were not looking good and the boss had panicked following a review of the latest report on client’s satisfaction survey.
“From the report, the client’s satisfaction index has fallen from 75 per cent last year to 65 per cent this year.
This is a 10 per cent dip and it is worrying me because it could be a symptom of deeply entrenched problems.
We may lose some of our most loyal clients and big business to competition.”
He shoved the report into Pato’s hands and urged him to read it in readiness for their next meeting.
After going through the report, Pato found out that the most outstanding things included delay in delivery of luggage, luggage lost on transit, goods damaged upon receipt coupled with a negative attitude by some van drivers.
Pato composed himself and went back to Ben’s office at 3pm and told him: “I have read the report but I need to visit a few of our clients to obtain more details on their specific areas of concern. Thereafter, I shall engage our drivers and address issues raised.”
Ben gave him a green light but requested him to submit a report on addressing the dissatisfaction issues by the end of two weeks.
Hours later, Pato went to some two medium-sized retailers based along River Road, and the first thing they told him is that they were losing customers due to delays in receiving luggage.
One of the retailers said: “I promise a customer to come over for their products, say at 11am.
The customer arrives in time only to find me waiting for your driver to deliver goods. Disappointed customers just cross the street and buy the same products from my competitors.”
They requested Pato to take action otherwise they will obtain services from Trulogic’s competitors.
Pato tried to impress upon them that things will change and better services are on the way: “Trulogic is committed to offer you quality services.
I shall, personally look into the matter and provide you with a lasting solution,” he promised.
He then crossed over to the Nairobi Central Business District (NCBD) to a large electronics wholesale shop on Luthuri Avenue.
On seeing Pato, the owner of the shop could not hide his emotions. The previous day he lost a large consignment of expensive electronic goods which were on transit to his business premises.
He had personally planned to visit Trulogic to lodge an official complaint only for Pato to show up. Pato received details on the lost goods promising to act on the matter urgently.
A wholesaler next to the electronics had a different story though. He said he had received damaged goods but did not blame Trulogic.
“I called the warehouse manager who said they were damaged at the point of collection. I dealt with the warehouse manager whose assistants may not have handled the goods properly.”
This was music to Pato’s ears after such a long day. However, this wholesaler was disappointed that the drivers were slow in offloading luggage and behaved as if it was not one of their duties.
The wholesaler had at times parted with some cash to ensure Trulogic drivers speed up offloading.
Client’s satisfaction index
The following week on Tuesday after taking his 10 o’clock tea, Pato confronted a targeted team of twelve drivers on behalf of others.
He blamed them as the main cause of the drop in the clients’ satisfaction index. This did not go down well with them.
Even before they could proceed, one driver retorted: “Your blame game is not a solution.
Let’s identify the causes of the delivery problems. For instance, delays may be occurring at the luggage loading point where the warehouse managers are not time conscious.”
It dawned on Pato that he had left out one important player in the supply chain. But another driver interrupted his train of thoughts as he pointed out that trust was on a downward trend at all levels.
He said drivers had also been bitten by the bug which encouraged them to “help” themselves with a products enroute to the clients’ premises.
It was decided that luggage be sealed at the loading site and have the seals broken when luggage is received at their destination.
As for poor attitude towards clients, the drivers pointed out that some clients did not treat them with respect.
One unhappy driver added: “I cannot allow anyone to look down upon me because I am a mere driver. I am an adult and deserve respect from other adults.”
At this point, Pato longed for a client-driver meeting where both parties would bond and agree on some rules of engagement for good working relationships. At the close of the meeting, Pato hinted that a refresher course on customer care was long overdue.
The meeting forced Pato to make another visit to the warehouse to establish the real cause of delays in loading luggage into delivery vans.
“As I informed you last time, your drivers sometimes play hide-and-seek around here even when luggage is ready for loading.
Some disappear to nearby food kiosks for meals at odd hours. To discourage them from unnecessarily hanging around the warehouse, we need to agree on standard loading times.”
Pato tried to impress upon them the need to ensure they do not lazy around but the warehouse managers told him off.
“Your supervisors should be responsible for monitoring your drivers at work. It would be unfair to delegate the task to us.”
Pato scratched and quietly mumbled to himself: “I wish I had drivers who require little or no supervision. I will check with HR later in case they have some magic approach on drivers’ supervision from our offices. Something like mobile CCTVs fitted into our delivery vans.”
Pato burnt the midnight oil to complete the report on client satisfaction which was due on Friday at 10am.
However, on his way to work Friday morning, Pato received a call from his ailing mother who had been admitted in a level 5 hospital in his home county. He sought permission from Ben to visit his mother.
The writer is HRD Consultant and Author of Transition into Retirement, [email protected]