Shall we please have a moment of silence? In fact let’s stand with our hands behind our backs and bow our heads. I would ask you to close your eyes but then you couldn’t read on. So keep them open but look extra solemn. Let’s all appear grave at the grave of our dearly departed. Even as we stand around the tomb we can remember the prior existence of this entity. This might be hard to do but you will understand why in a minute. Since this is not an unmarked grave and your eyes are open you are allowed to look at his/her name. Male or female? That doesn’t matter. It is actually a gender neutral concept, best known in English as Customer Service.
Customer Service is dead in Ghana. According to reports it died at various locations. The most popular suggestions are a restaurant, a road-side chop bar, a police station, a hospital, bank and office. Irrespective of where it died, the death of Customer Service made the situation stink.
If you want an image to aid your thinking, next time you pass by a rubbish dump inhale deeply.
**Thanks to Kojo Akoto Boateng of Ultimate Radio 106.9 for this picture**
There has been more than enough complaining on the issue so I won’t expatiate on this. Rather I would like to focus on the causes of this problem.
1. Part of the problem appears to result from a generational clash within the context of the modern and the traditional. Typical Ghanaian socio-cultural systems attach a significant amount of respect to age. While this is not a bad thing in itself, it becomes problematic if someone is expected to serve or attend to a younger person.
2. There are also people who never envisioned themselves getting a job and are therefore unable to function normally in their positions. Unfortunately their confusion spills over to affect innocent customers.
3. Again, there are those who use foul means to gain employment. While most males under this category offer a cash bribe, their female counterparts offer up their bodies as a living sacrifice, definitely unholy but pleasing only to the lascivious fellow who demands it. They therefore attach a sense of entitlement to their work and feel like the client owes them something.
4. There is, moreover, this attitude among some people who behave as if getting a job is the destination and not the beginning. Before they get the job there is meticulous preparation. Some attend church with the seriousness of Cristiano Ronaldo at training. They will pray and fast where necessary. If the Pastor prophesies jobs during a sermon, they shout the loudest amen. Don’t blame them; their economic situation is dire and any means to get the job is the right means. There is however an ECG-like disconnection between their anxiety to dislodge the ‘un’ from their unemployment status and the apathy with which they work.
5. There are some people who conflate personal problems with their duties at work. The most popular of these take out their marital stress on poor customers.
6. And of course there are the plain lazy and useless folks who feel like the world owes them for hustling to get to where they have reached.
So next time you suffer from a lack of Customer Service try to figure out which of these number the rude or incompetent person deserves.
Ok, so back to the service at hand. As the pall bearers lower the coffin into the grave, the top accidentally plunks off and to our shock (if we are shocked at all) the coffin is empty! You mean Customer Service never even existed in Ghana?
Suggested Solutions to follow in due course.