Thursday, September 27, 2012

VenuG Presents :Customer is King: A Customer is the most important visitor on our premises. , Customer is God.

I remember a Blog-post where I had quoted Bapu or Mahatma Gandhi or Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who in my opinion, gave us the best quotation on Customer Service. As a Banker, I am slave to the subject Customer Service, and am ready to pick up fight with any subordinate junior on the matter of customer service. Read my THAT post " Forbes Flipkart & Customer Service, VC Funding, Enterprise, 5 M's of Management" only then read this real story, of how, my alert handling of a new prospective customer, gained my branch Deposits to the tune of Ra3 Crores. Mind You I was an infotech officer, not entertaining the customer, would not affect an iota on my performance,  but my friends, Banking is A) A Team Game B) A Business founded on Good Faith & Trust C) Banking or any financial product, is an emotional relation, between the buyer and a seller, you can never sell a product, you build a relationship, and here, you have to tread cautiously, not to offend, as well as, follow due diligence and KYC norms. Mind you, my KYC from 1985 HAS BEEN IMPECCABBLE. Not 1 case of forgery fraud or non identified customer, and I have opened maybe a lakh accounts or more till now.

Read it , this is straight from my heart. And it is for real, just posted it for the benefit of my Junior Probationers as a lesson to learn. And the place it was posted, I have few colleagues, who were working with me at Jaipur. So a lie is caught.

End of Prologue
Customer is God: When he walks into your business, you never recognize him

A True Story: March 25 2003, M.I.Road Branch 17:45 hrs IST

  I was Posted as Senior Manage(IT), M.I. Jaipur, it was a Year End Time, The Branch was 1 Crore short of deposit target.
1. It was a TBM Branch, the Data was 1.2GB
2. The Backup Media was DAT Tape 1GB IT TOOK 2 tapes
3 Time taken 2 hours 30 minutes

I was nearing the end of the backup, maybe 15 more minutes.

  Someone enters the door, he is wearing a Grey suit, White Shirt, golden tie, Snake Leather Shoe(Pointed at toe) wearing a Rolex Watch, a gold chain in his neck, stout, but pleasant fellow.everything of him, (including his perfume, the whiff of which had filled the Banking Hall) reeked of "phirangi stuff" "Foreign Returned" "Vilayati" "Hang Kang" "Thoobai" "Gelph" . Being a Mallu I had 5 cousins in the Gelph, hence I knew,

Bank Khula hai? he asks,
Me , Sir, aap Kaun?
He: Arrey itni bhi kya jaldi hai.
Me:Sar Bank to band ho gaya, par mera kaam khatam nahi hua hai. abhi mujhe ek banner banana hai, aur ek statement nikalna hai.
(That day, an IT officer and my protégée Puneet Jain(who was posted at Udaipur/or was it Rajesh wanted a banner, RM was visiting Udaipur to inaugurate the 1st ATM in Rajasthan, so they wanted a Banner welcoming the RM, Ahmedabad. ))
A lawyer of Mrs Surama Gupta, wanted a very old statement of account, which was a long pending demand, from pre oasys period, which had to be

taken from old data.
So while the tape was being backed up, I was doing that too.

He said, yaar suno, kya naam hai tumhara? I was suspicious, this man looked to me, from middle east, and looked every bit a Bhai type. So, I

Sternly told him, Sir, I welcome you to the branch, but I am sorry looking at the security angle, will only permit you to be inside, if you show me an identity. Please identify yourself, here is my id card, I am Venugopal Menon, Senior Manager (looking after infotech part of the bank as well as manager administration) If you do not want to identify yourself, I will not mind the same, but you shall have to leave the premises, with immediate effect. (MIND YOU I, was alone, it was 7:45 PM, this was Jaipur, and M.I.Road had started to be deserted, and even Damodar, our Chai wallah had told me he'd leave in 15 minutes. So if I completed my work, till 8 he shall lock the premises, else, I would have to do the same.

The Gentleman showed me a passport which mentioned his name as Mohd Farouque(Thats the name I eemember, it is 7 years you see).I checked the passport, having worked as Inspector Customs and Central Excise , Palam before joining syndicate bank, I had knowledge, what a genuine passport security features were!!! And it was Genuine, I said, Aadab Farouque bhai, farmaiye kya huqm hai?

He asked Bhai Menon Babu? Yeh Sarkari Bank hai?
Aur 7:45 mein Bank mein woh bhi sarkari bank mein Aadmi?
Koi chori to nahi kar rahe?
I said, mere boss se baat karoge janaab? Ya Abhi, Gopal Bari thaney se Daroga bulwalein, mujhe pehchante hain?
He: Yaar, tum bhi khamakhwah garam ho jaate ho. theek hai.!
Mujhe 786 number ka khata chahiye!

I had the other data on screen, checked F9 S and NRE/ONR were upto 300 so 786 was free.
Me Janaab, 7:45 par 786 khate ki kimat hoti hai.Dogey?
He tookout a wad of dirhams, kitne loge?
Me:Janab, sarkari bank hai, custom ki naukri chodke yahan aya hoon, ghoos hileni thi, to wahan kam thi? mera mazak ya tuaheen na karein.!
He: Yeh dekho, kya hai, iske liye khata kholna hai!
Me looks at a dirty, nearly torn yellow paper, looked like a fraudulent new paper, browned by smoke from a sigdi!! (Everyone in MI road called me Inspector Menon, because, as a principle, I looked at every new customer, witth suspicion, without his/her ever knowing that fact!)  :-)
My questions on 1st withdrawal at MI road got the following rreaction "Bank mein ho ya yeh Pulis Thana Hai?
To which my reply was, Sir, meri duty hai, kisi bhi cheque dharak ki sampatti ki suraksha, yadi jis baat ki tankhwah milti hia, woh na karoon, to raat neend nahi aati, mera
Sawaal seedha hai, yeh cheque aapko kahan se aya, batayenge, tabhi mainpehla cheque pass karoonga, anyatha, aap apne introducer ko bula laweingey, unke hastakshar lekar pass kar doonga.!!!

When I read the paper, My eyes popped out like Jim Carreys when he blurted :Hang on my eyeballs" in the movie The Mask!!!

It was a KCC (Kuwait Compensation Claim) This Gentleman, had a POP(Plaster of Paris production facility, which was destroyed during Iraqi attack on Kuwait in 1991) The amount of KCC, was Dirhams 1.38 lakh. One Dirham was Ra 138 (I totally forget) but this much I remember, the amount after conversion, in INR was around 3 crores, If I remember correctly, because, the amount was making us surpass the deposit target, by leaps and bounds, this was 25th March mind you!. But I am a very careful, fastidious and cautious Banker!!! The Keeda in Me will not stop biting my medula oblongata! :D

I called INTERNATIONAL DIVISION, MUMBAI, (IT WAS 8 PM BY NOW) Luckily for me, P V Rao took the call, having worked in Mumbai just one floor belowThe International Division, having many frined in that office, the entire Dealer Trainee batches were well known to me as I made friends easily. He confirmed the KCC was pending, the passport number and his adress everything tallied.

I told him(Farooque), I will open the 2 a/c's one NRE & Anotherm ONR IN his fathers name, of HE gave me this signed with an OG72. He said A/c number? I

said khol to raha hoon 786 number wala billa?

He said, saaley tum kaise sarkari banker ho, na ghoos na kuch maangte ho, 8 bajee gadhe ki tarah lagey ho, shadi shuda ho? I said haan, biwi aur

beti hai, ab ek shart hai, Do you have a car?
He said, haan Indigo hai. Taxi hai, driver hai.
1 I said bus will stop by the time I finish the job.
2 I need cigarettes to work, I need to dropped home.
3 I will not wake up my wife for dinner, so on the way, we shall have dal roti.
he said yes to all and offerred me the 1st dunhill, Later he offerred me 10 packs of Dunhill, which I refused.
He said, mutton kha lena
I said nahi, Dal roti, aap mutton chahein to khayein, mujhe dal roti ki hi aadat hai.
He:Daaru piyogey?
I:Peeta hoon, par aapse nahi leke peeta. Waise bhi Islam mein Shaarb Haraam hai, Allah se Daro.

1I called Shyam our coruirer wallah
2 called P.V.Raod again, confrirming that I am sending him the KCC
3 resotred backup. re-opened day
4 opened accounts
5 printed 2 pass books
6 the a/c numbers in MI road no NRE786/ONR786 can still be checked for this fact. The entries will be dated 28th March 2003(Reporting friday)
7 Printed and couriered Banners and kept the a/c statements at CM's table

I did not call Our then Chief Manager K. Ashok Kumar Pai ( why because Mahesh Agrawal knows this, it is unprintable why I did not call Mr Pai

:-) ) He was a GREAT BOSS TO WORK WITH, fully supportive.)
When In the morning I told him, he was not going to beleive it, as the kcc had reached Mumbai the next day, I asked him to call ID. He did, and

so MI road had achieved all the 5 targets that year. DON'T ASK ME WHO Got the reward, not me, Not Mr Aggarwal, who was present in the branch

till 7:30 after which he left, nor Mr Pai. That is unfortunate part.
Anybodies guess who got the reward?
Mr T C Bhamu went to his village to verify whther the man was genuine, I compeled the CM to do that, as the amount was huge. So my friends the

Gandhis words
When a customer walks in, it is the most auspicious occasion
Customer is God
God and Customer, they never identify themselves, be cautious in the branch, after office hours, only 2 people can come, a thief or a new

customer(sometimes recovery comes like that I have experience. That is another story, for another day
Shub Ratri
Keep Smiling

1 comment:

  1. Mr menon, story is grt , I read word by word... I m a doctor doing cosmetic dermatology practice,, I hav to understand my customers emotionally as what is actually bothering them! Ur story has given a real feel to give importance to each customer and then I hav a grt experience regarding my own loan worth 25 lacs to purchase a laser machine 4 yrs back, the bank manager helped me even I didn't hav sufficient returns and anything for mortgage . It was a grt help and I still respect him and in touch with him m although he has been transferred 3 yrs back from the branch.