Everyone in Myanmar may have experienced either one of the following cases with Myanmar so-called reliable financial institutions aka banks.
- Their MPU cards being stuck in those outdated ATM machines from 1990s.
- Being greeted with the friendliest staffs when you enter the bank.
- Contacting call center for 24/7 customer service and the call being transferred from one exchange to another until we can reach out to the person who can solve the issue we are facing. Only to have dropped the call suddenly either due to the unstable phone connection and that respondent just doesn’t feel like answering and dropped the call.
For those most reputable banks in Myanmar, I sometimes wonder why they might sometimes want to make things more complicated than ever. Such as the need to create new bank account if we went to different bank branches. Then, if we were to withdraw money at the different branches from the one where we create our bank accounts, there comes a service charge to withdraw our own money from our bank account! If only they could standardize the bank account regardless of where we open our accounts, that would really be great. There is another thing that I would like to address.
You know what really grinds my gears?
Being forced to pay service fees to deposit our own money into their blah-blah-pay account. Meanwhile, they use our money to improve the cash flow of themselves and lend them at an even higher interest rate to their clients. However, that’s what only those privileged investors with abundant resources of capital can do.
Has it ever happened to you while you were using internet service from those reliable service providers?
- In the middle of the mobile legends ranked game, the connection becomes unstable and you lost the game because of poor network connection.
- You were watching finale episode of “Money Heist” from Netflix and when the climax is happening, the buffering continues forever.
- It was the beginning of Zoom meeting with colleagues and when it is my turn to introduce myself, the call dropped. When you check the wifi connection, your network becomes invisible.
Seeking customer support from these service providers seems quite helpful too. In the early morning when the connection is weak, they told us to restart the router again and again. (and magically, it works!) In the afternoon when you opened YouTube videos to stay productive while working, the connection stops abruptly. The response from customer service team could either be: “the servers are under maintenance for better internet connection in the future” or “the weather interrupts the internet connection stability”. (Meanwhile, we are sacrificing the lack of internet in the afternoon when we most need it the most for work.) It was late at night when most people are sleeping and the connection is supposed to be faster. We wish it really is but sadly, nope. Unfortunately, customer support team is also sound asleep. We call them the next morning to ask how to fix this issue. The solution is simple: restart the router.
If you are from Yangon, I can say that you might have read quite a few complaint posts about those financial institutions and internet service providers at least once on your Facebook Newsfeed. For some of those posts with thousand likes, shares and comments that have become the hot news of the day, there is a chance service providers may contact the owner of the post to apologize to them personally (and if they are kind enough, give them some compensations.) Their responses get heap of praises across Facebook users in Myanmar, and people will be satisfied with their actions until another misfortunate incident similar to that one happens again. At that time, unless the post has garnered enough attention to the audiences in Facebook, no action will be taken. And that will be the end of complaint.
Although I may sound like one of those people who loves complaining a lot, I am just expressing my opinion as a customer to receive the minimum service quality that I believe I deserve from those service providers. In order to provide decent services for customers, service providers need to possess only the following attribute, which is, empathy. For all service providers out there, consider yourself in the role of customers.
Usually, customers do not want to complain and just want to enjoy high quality service from those providers. They are just complaining to receive the service that they buy for. If service providers can have the mindset of “consider I am a customer,” I think most of those complaints can be solved. So, I am just requesting these service providers who apparently suck at what they are doing to have a little bit of the empathy for the customers.
Being not a big fan of complaints, I do believe that there are alternative solutions that can result in win-win situation for both customers and service providers. And I am kindly requesting all service providers to consider themselves from the customers’ perspectives. Why? The answer is simple:
Empathy is the only missing jigsaw piece that can fix the deteriorated relationship between customers and service providers in Myanmar.
So, what might be the full picture of jigsaw? One may wonder…
An empathetic service provider and a satisfied customer smiling to each other.
Zaw Ye Naing
(Disclaimer: This article greatly appreciates all kind staffs that still exist in service sectors and only reflect to some of those service providers who may be lacking that missing jigsaw piece. We also stand against customers that are way too demanding.)