Mr Sunil Bharti: Are You Listening? Your company (Bharti Airtel) is setting benchmarks for Poor, Horrible, Bad Customer Service & Unethical Practices
Mr Sunil Bharti, Are you listening?
In Late June 2012, I had written about my experience with a potential scam that Bharti Airtel could be running which could runs into millions.
A simple scam where they activate some 1 rupee a day service without asking for consent from the user and deduct money. An investigation & research on google threw pages after pages of such complaints. Just check for yourself using this link and see what how many horror stories there are about people being cheated by Airtel.
Anyway, I had blogged about it, tweeted the incident & even posted the same on Airtel facebook page. This is their response (or the lack of it) and the story further.
Their folks on twitter (either their agency or whoever is managing that account) made the right noises but then nothing happened.
Till date, no one has contacted me or reached out to me to address this. This proves that their responses on twitter are just useless facade and they have no intention of addressing the issue.
I gave them enough time and gave all the information but zilch results.!!! It’s been 2 months.
I had posted the same on facebook and attached is their response. Same cookie cutter promise of a response & action but nothing has happened.
No effort on Airtel part to reach out or address the issue. Only false promises and no real action.
The question is why Airtel is indulging in such unethical practices & a potential fraud of charging consumers of services which they have never asked for? Surely, so many people complaining about the same must haven’t got unnoticed by the company.
So, the real question is why is Airtel not doing something about it and addressing the core issue.
So, Mr Sunil Bharti, are you listening?
If I were to start my career all over again; the one thing I would do differently is attention towards the financial planning — savings & investments — at the start of my career.
The joy of getting your first job & your first pay cheque is great and time flies before you realize that you haven’t saved (& wisely invested) enough. There is absolutely nothing wrong with going to movies with friends, eating out, partying, buying that snazzy shoes & jeans, fulfilling all your needs & wants. The problem is in not paying attention to regularly putting aside some part of your salary towards savings & investments IN THE EARLY PART OF YOUR CAREER.
Not much but just 10% of your salary would be enough to start off your long term savings & investment plan.
As an illustration, here are some examples of the power of saving & investing small amounts over long periods of time:
- 1000 rupees invested monthly (with 10% increase in investment every year), earning a 10% rate of return, over 35 years will give you ~1 crore.
- 3000 rupees per month will give you 3 crore & 5000 per month will give you 5 crore over 35 years
To illustrate, the power of starting early:
- 3000 rupees will give you 3 crore in 35 years, 1.7 crore in 30 years (if you start 5 years later) and just 88 Lakhs if you start saving 10 years later (in 25 years) and just with 10% return
The first step in personal financial planning is to be aware for the need for it. Thankfully, today in the internet age, there is no dearth of information on this subject. Here are some blog posts, that I stumbled upon, which explain several aspects of financial planning.
So, if you are a young professional, start saving & investing wisely — right at the start of your career. Open a demat account and get some SIP’s going.
The reality is that wealth is generated by people who invest smartly and with discipline, not who just earn lots of money.
Few days later, I come across this wonderful blog post which analyzes the comment made by Djokovic at the post match conference. Suddenly, I had new found respect for Djokovic and could put into perspective why Djokovic won the Wimbledon and is currently the best tennis player at the moment.
Wimbledon champion John McEnroe asked Djokovic what he had changed about his game to become number one. What was different between this year and last? Djokovic shrugged his shoulders, almost imperceptibly, and gave an important answer:
A few percent improvement in several areas of my game.
Djokovic’s answer, in a way, helps us understand that ‘learning and improvement’ (in any area) is often about the little things and not always about the big bang changes/initiatives that we embark upon.
To quote from that blog:
The difference for him was not an addition to his repertoire, a brand new skill he could brandish against Nadal or Federer. It was a few percentage points’ improvement in his serve, in his return, in his volley, and in his ability to concentrate. Keep in mind that he was already the best returner of service in the world and strong enough in the other elements of his game to compete with and occasionally defeat two of the greatest players in history.
That was not enough. So he went home and got a little better in several parts of his game
Collectively, those few percentage points added up and made the difference. When you are playing with the best in the world, it those few percentage points matter & make the difference.
So, I thought, would this statement & approach be also applicable to us in business? How can a few % improvement make a difference to us?
Then I thought about:
- A few percent improvement in our utilization
- A few percent improvement in our billing rates
- A few percent improvement in our DSO
- A few percent improvement in our CR revenue
- A few percent improvement in our attrition figures
- A few percent improvement in our estimation
- A few percent improvement in our execution
- A few percent improvement in our personal productivity
- A few percent improvement in ….
Imagine what all this can lead to – just a few percent improvement..!!!
Would you like to add to this list of “A few percent more…”
I am not a big fan of the Reality TV Talent Shows but one doesn’t have a choice if one’s spouse has a liking towards them — especially if they are of the song & dance variety. So in recent past I have ended up watching a couple of dance & song reality TV shows at home.
There is something that has struck me about the participants of these shows. I see a huge difference in the attitude & the confidence of the participants in these shows compared to few years earlier. Many of the participants are from the tier-II towns, some even from mufassil towns and quite a few are from a lower middle class income group or at times even lower. Most come from humble background and are the “first generation” singers & dancers in their families.
Almost all these participants acknowledge the hardship they faced in child hood, their family struggles, upbringing & economically backward condition. YET, they don’t seem to be stuck in a ‘cursing the god‘ mindset for their present condition. They seem to be at peace for where they were born and how they lived and come across as people who have hope and are dreamers with very high ambitions. They know how important it is for them to succeed & what success means — beyond the immediate. They come across as people ready for the struggle, hard work and eager to make their mark. They are uninhibited, clear on their goals and it is also good to see parents support these young Indians. Of course, one can see the hopes/aspirations in the eyes of the parents when they talk.
For example, in a recent episode I saw a person who sells fruits on the roadside and who learnt to dance himself; A 19 years old girl from kolkatta who teaches dance, learns also, is a backup dancer in films, does bit choreography and comes from a petty shopkeeper family. A contestant where the father has passed away and the mother stitches clothes to support the family. A contestant who works as a welder in a steel plant and practices dance at night. A contestant who is hearing & speech impaired, a contestant whose parents are hearing & speech impaired. And believe me, all these contestant could dance pretty well. Once they took the dance floor you could only appreciate the dedication & the hard work put in by these young Indians and their talent. You could not imagine the hardships & the daily struggle they go through in their personal life. The confidence in these people is just something else. They don’t come across as the shy, ‘villager lost in town and in awe‘ types.
I, personally, am very happy & pleased to see that. A young generation full of hope & dreams and ready to slog it out for what they are passionate about is good for any country. These people are the real role models for other people in the country, with similar backgrounds, wanting to follow their dreams..!!! These are the people who give hope to their dreams and are contributing in creating a generation of youth that is ready to follow their dreams