An Open Letter to Telkom Kenya Chief Executive


Dear Ghossein

First of all, I would like to thank you for the wonderful work you are doing at Telkom Kenya. I can now call other networks (with my Safaricom line) at a shilling less than someone with an Orange line can. I would also like to thank you for leading a group of people who were responsible for one of my worst Saturdays of this year. I will not forget to thank your staff for teaching me how not to treat a customer if I want him to come back again. I have written this letter to your info mail and reported the same to your twitter account. I am sure you will probably never see it but I wrote this for that little probability that you might stumble upon it. I had to write it here so that, that one person who will read this will not be treated as I was by your staff!

It all started early last week when I wanted a modem. After asking around (me and technology are not tight, I had to seek expert advice), I was informed that safaricom modem is the best but it is way too costly. Orange is the second best and cheap. I decided to buy the orange modem. Sir, you should understand that I practice brand loyalty. I always buy a certain soap, a certain newspaper etc and not any other. When it comes to whether to use Safcom, orange or Zain, my loyalty is with Safaricom, despite everything they have made us go through. However, I decided to give orange the one chance to change my loyalty from Safaricom.

On Wednesday, I tried in vain to get an open Orange shop so that I could purchase a modem. All shops were closed as it was a holiday. I could not fault your staff as they had to celebrate Mashujaa Day but more so because Safaricom shops were also closed. The following day, I called your customer care and I was assured that your shops close at 6pm. Since I could not make it to any of your shops by 6pm, I made a note to myself that through thick and thin, I will have to get the modem on Saturday. It happened that I had some function to attend on Saturday and so I had to excuse myself and leave early, all in the name of giving your organisation some business, albeit little.

The first shop I visited was your Ex-telkom House shop. To my horror, they had no modems. Not even one! The attendants were unresponsive and they seemed not interested in addressing the questions I had. As patience and me are sworn enemies, I decided to call your customer care guys who had all along been helpful. I was advised to visit your GPO center where I would be assisted. On inquiring if by the time I got there the center would still be open, I was assured that your shops close at 6pm. It was a few minutes past 4pm. Had I any idea of the ordeal that awaited me at Teleposta towers, I would have gone back home (and even save myself from the rain and traffic on that Saturday.)

The shop at Teleposta towers (second floor) had been closed several light years before I got there before 4.30pm. I asked the guards at the reception on ground floor and they told me the shop closes at 5pm. It was not yet 5pm! It is then that I called your customer care guys and the one I talked to was pretty sure that the shop is supposed to close at 6pm. I talked to the guard at the door and he was dead sure that the shop closes at 5pm. I pointed to a city clock that it was not yet 5pm. I did not know who to believe, your customer care guys or the Radar guards (even though both of them were giving me inaccurate information). I called your customer care guys again and the one I talked to inquired for what seemed like eternity and a half before telling me that he has confirmed that the Teleposta shop closes at 5pm and there were people ready to serve me. She even went on to tell me that I should register the modem line etc.

The guard at the door, who had heard the conversation seemed unhappy that I had to confirm with someone else. I went in and told the receptionist guards that I had been told the shop was still open. It is then that all hell broke loose. The guard at the door came in and started calling me all sorts of names (most of which I cannot print) because I could not trust them. “Wachana na aka kajinga hakataki kutuamini, kanafikiri tulianza kufanya kazi hapa jana!” is probably the only thing that I can print. (You can use google translate to find out what that means). Since arguing with a fool only results in the smart guy being beaten by the fool’s experience, I decided not to argue with the guard and proceeded to the lifts. “Wacha kaende kapate kumefungwa,” one of the guard who was at the reception told her colleagues.

Unfortunately, the shop was closed, as I had found it earlier and unlike one of your customer care guys had said. On reaching the reception, the two female guards (who had transformed your reception into a salon) and the door guard proceeded with a laborious laughter before joining forces in calling me all sorts of names. I immediately called your customer care guys and talked to one Nancy. If you actually record those conversations for training purposes, I recommend you check the 3 minute 54 second call from me to your customer care attendant called Nancy at 4.38 pm on 23rd October 2010.

Sir, I know the above story probably bored you to death, but there are a few things that you should understand. First, how many people will go to all the trouble I went through in trying to give you business? Second, I am one of those people who have a slightly bigger than small ego. Being called names by a guard whose salary at retirement will be less than what I was given as my starting salary when I was employed is the most bitter pill I have had to swallow this year. The embarrassment was more than I could bear and I would not wish it on my worst enemy. If I had been called names by you, I would have understood because you are the CEO of a company, but guards of a little known security company called Radar Security wearing ugly uniforms? That was inhuman. (no offense to other guards). Thirdly, had your customer care attendants told me all shops are closed, it would have saved me a lot of trouble. How come they do not know the time your shops close? What else do they not know? Do they even know that your official colour is Orange? Do they know that your firm made a super huge loss in 2009 and they should do all they can to ensure that they get as many customers as possible?

Finally, Mickael (coincidentally you are namesakes with Safcom’s outgoing CEO. I hope you are a genius like most Michaels), I will buy a Safaricom modem on Saturday. I know I will not encounter the problems I did in trying to purchase yours. Is there anything you can do to make me feel better? No, but me not seeing anyone with an ugly Radar uniform within one kilometer from your premises will be a start. I am fair, and so I will give you a right of reply. Hit me on the.alt.focus@gmail.com. I will post your reply here, but then again, you will probably never read this.

A distraught would be customer,

 

PS: I stumbled upon this: This orange internet ad is hate speech to wakale – TheKimutai

 

Find More writings by greatrnk here

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7 Comments

  1. ”Being called names by a guard whose retirement salary will be less than what I was given as my starting salary when I was employed is the most bitter pill I have had to swallow this year”.
    Hehehehehe that tickled me to bits but on the other hand…..woiye. How could they do that to you?!@#$%^& Am throwing away my Orange line. ( Yeah, am loyal to our friendship)

    Reply
    • Make sure you destroy it before you throw it away. I do not want someone else picking it and using it 🙂

      Reply
  2. Moses Kanja

     /  April 15, 2011

    Its the same story with all the large companies in Kenya. Non seems to get it when it comes to the small things that matter the most. In case you hold a contrary opinion, try contacting other internet service providers. The story is the same, you beg to be listened to.

    Pole Rnk. It happens every day, to voiceless Kenyans.

    Reply
    • I guess you are right. I visited a Safaricom customer care centre recently, and I left disappointed.

      Thanks for dropping by.

      Reply
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