Does Dominica have any professionalism?

Dear Editor: As a local businessman I am fed up with how Dominicans conduct business on a daily basis, from small businesses to multi-million dollar corporations.

My first gripe is the relationship between organisations as it relates to customer service, which is rotten and low here.

If an organisation such as a bank or telephone company has the need to pass on information as it relates to the management or finances of the company, normally a representative from such organisation would call and ask to speak to the  manager or seek to obtain a direct number to someone in authority, right? Or, alternatively, leave a general message to get in touch as soon as possible, right?

Not in Dominica!

When any of those organisations call a business place, they leave a message with any employee, therefore your employee, who otherwise wouldn’t be privy to your information as it relates to rental, account management, fees, debts, payments etc, knows everything about your business.

I have worked and lived in other jurisdictions and it is totally different. Our boss always told us that when you call a business place, and the matter is in no way related to an employee, we should try to get in touch with the manager directly – and no one else. He also instructed us not to leave messages with sensitive information about the business to any employee.

Not in Dominica!

They call about a bill or something, and instead of asking for a manager, the spineless, brainless person who calls blurts out everything to the employee, not caring if it’s the receptionist or cleaner, when in fact such sensitive information should only be given directly to the manager. Such behaviour is unprofessional.

Also, I observe that people in Dominica, when they pay monies, do not like to simply place the check for the intended recipient in an envelope, seal it, label it and drop it off.

On several occasions my business receives checks “just like that” – not sealed or contained in any parcel or envelope, therefore I normally have my staff handing over checks to me, bare as they were “born”. So in fact, who-so-ever answers the door (could be a thief holding us hostage) collects a check that is not contained in an envelope. They won’t ask for the boss or accountant or sales person, the stupid messenger just drops off the bare check or cash.

Times are soo hard, but you’re telling me we can’t afford envelopes or a banana leaf to wrap the check in?

Nothing is wrong if the person meets the boss and hands him a check without an envelope. But if he/she is not around simply place it in an envelope.

That’s how Dominicans grow their children?

Just yesterday, one of my junior employees gave me a message that they should not be privy to. Yes, and it was coming from the National Bank, from someone you expected to have some sort of class and professionalism. The person could have asked for the boss, and if he or she is not there, leave a darn message to call back. In fact the information that they were relaying could have waited until the next business day. Or use the little sponge we have in our skulls and ask for the boss’ direct numbers if it is that important.

Some of these so-called high society people, who think they are better than anyone else, are the ones doing it. They should also remember that customer service is part of their job description.

I also notice that customer service representatives do not provide you with proper or complete information concerning their business esp. as it relates to applications of any sort. It’s after obtaining the result when you realise that they left out pertinent information, or did not follow the proper procedures.

A friend of mine recently went to obtain her driver’s license for the first time. After being successful, she went to pay for the license at the cashier at Inland Revenue, she left the building. Now the silly cashier did not tell the lady (knowing it is a first-time licensee) that she should go to the other end to obtain the card. He simply did what he had to do (so the rest was left up to her to find out). Now that’s what you call poor customer service. The lady went to the police department and was told she had to go back to Inland Revenue.

I’ve had peeps process documents and when they go to process transactions elsewhere they are asked how they obtain such documents because it was not supposed to be done or not done properly.

For God’s sake, Dominicans, it’s the 21st century. Get a grip!  We stagnant and slumping deeper in the pits.

Pissed off

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64 Comments

  1. September 6, 2014

    No matter if some one searches ffor hhis required thing,
    thujs he/she needs to be available that in detail, so that thing is maintained over here.

  2. Traveller
    March 6, 2010

    As if I remember the now Miss Dominica (at her first SAT interview) talking about we Dominicans changing our mentality so that we can move forward?

    We need to change our negative mentality when it pertains to business and dealing with people. No matter the attitude of the customer, the person giving service on the other end has to maintain their composure. You never know what the customer is going through or has gone through and depending on the way they are treated at a business place their mood could change.

    I have seen it happen, because I have worked in that field for quite a long time. I have dealt with people you could call a donkey but (lol), but after giving them great service they were happy and became a usual spending customer.

    Your job as a service provider is to make any customer happy (not at your expense or the business expense) professionally and to make sure that service is always top notch.

  3. Yes-AH
    March 4, 2010

    BLAME DE EMPLOYERSSSSS, BLAME DE EMPLOYERSSSS….EMPLOYEESSSS DONT HIRE NOR TRAIN THEMSELVES….IF U HAVE WEED IN UR LOVELY GARDEN REMOVE IT>>>>>

  4. freetalk
    March 4, 2010

    Anytime a Dominican has to serve another Dominican they think they are doing you a favor. It’s always about who is better than the other, who has more “class” as they say it. Sitting behind a desk or selling goods behind a counter does not give anyone a reason to discriminate. Going to a seminar to get the required training will do no good. IT’S IN THEIR BLOOD and Dominicans are well known for this nasty behavior.
    IT’S A SHAME!

  5. Sout Man
    March 3, 2010

    Yes, we have cusromer relations issues that need to to be addressed. But we all know the power of the Boss’ personal secretary and the physician’s assistant. As Addie said, I sense belligerence. I hope the bank and telephone company are not given a run-around. In the future, give them your personal # or office extension; not the # in the breakroom. Check this: @ Femmedominique “….A little deposit addressed to the office of the GM” Are you kidding me? Thumbs up to GM’s secretary……@ Mrs. P: “I am appalled sometimes to be called a Dominican.” After all the efforts by Marcus Garvey and Malcolm X against self-hate; are you for real?…[email protected] Well: “you just want to thrash some of the idiots” ……”some of us have infact travelled, lived in a CIVILIZED country.” That kind of attitude ; that aura of superiority comes across as cockiness and it pisses me off. In our travels we experience the best and worst of humanity.Stop pretending that everything is OK in the industrialized countries. Poor customer service in the USA is called racism!!

  6. At last.......
    March 3, 2010

    To Mot: I worked in a company in Roseau where the bathroom was located on the second floor of the building, any customer who came in with a bath room emergency if your last name was not Mr. so and so and Mrs. so and so our response to “is there a bathroom I could use?” was to be “NO“. mot the gentleman who answered you at the time was white, nothing to do with being racist. But you need to understand company policy is the law, I felt sorry for ever man, woman and child that came to the store asking to use the bathroom but if I had to take everyone upstairs I would have been fired. How can you look at a mother asking you if her child could use our bathroom and say “no” to them, and on the other hand you can’t possibly bash the company that your work for by telling that person that management don’t want there customers to use their bathroom.
    this is bigger that just an American or white man denying you access to a bathroom in the united States, we need to stop looking at what other people are doing and strive to make yourself greater than them. Let us in Dominica beat America and other countries at there game. There a country of millions of people, they can afford to have a couple bad eggs, we here in Dominica cant, we have to be at our best because if we have one rotten grape in our bunch where doomed, we need to learn to drop that one or else it’s going to let the entire bunch (Country) stink.
    I invited/urged a few of my friends to come to Dominica for their first time for the festival. They stayed at one of the hotels in Roseau, one of this visitors was going through some really bad dealings with her now ex boyfriend. This dude must have called every hotel, motel and guest house in Dominica, when he finally got the place she was staying at, the receptionist gave him all her information down to her room and telephone number, when she checked in and when she would be checking out date and time, I mean that shit is scary, companies should learn not to give up personal information just by submitting a first and last name. it’s like the ones that’s not supposed to give up information can’t keep their mouth shut and those who has to communicate with customers don’t see the need to greet you, they act like you’re the cause to how crappy their day is, you try to make conversation with them or ask them questions on products and they act like you invented the dam thing so you should know everything about it.
    I also took them to a restaurant on Bayfront, my sister’s first time visiting Dominica, looking like me to a T…. went inside while we all lingered back talking, she comes back out and informs me that she was asking the girl in side some questions on the restaurant and the type of food that they sold (making small talk) she was promptly told “don’t you live here? is that the way things are done? This company lost a sale and bad enough my sister is a food critic for a news paper and head chef at a restaurant in the United States. And yes she did write an article on her experience with food in Dominica. I’m just saying you never know who is walking into your establishment.
    Though most managers and owners don’t know what is going on because when they are around everyone is on there Ps and Qs, once they turn their backs it gives a whole new meaning to when the cats away that mice will play.
    My lovely country needs to change when it comes to customer service, this is 2010 it’s time we grow.

  7. A few good ones
    March 3, 2010

    I agree with pissed off completely, things need to change on a high scale and our people need to stop making excuses and work as a nation to fix this problem because clearly this is a very great problem and if this is not handled now we as a nation will have a serious problem economically.

    But in that saying i have to point out a few establishment that should be commended for their excellences in customer service in Dominica, the workers at LIAT at the airport are just excellent, they will go the extra mile for you, even when it is beyound their control they try, they greet, they smile and they should be comemded for this, the workers at grand barzar in roseau and portsmouth they will greet you and attend to you great job grand barzar you are training your workers, the employees at fort young good work keep it up, thier are a few great customer service establishment and as you can see they are the ones who are doing well in Dominica, customer service is vital to your business people so train your workers to be professional and curtious to every customer and if they dont you should get rid of them.

  8. Dr. Finger
    March 3, 2010

    It annoys me when every time we as a people say something negative about Dominica (our beloved homeland) online someone has to come and talk about other people are seeing what we are saying. Who the hell cares? The internet is not a place to hide secrets. If what we are saying is true then so be it. It is what it is. No one expects Dominicans to be perfect by pretending all is well with us and life is oh so great down in Dominica. The bible says the truth shall set us free and by god let us tell the truth in a palatable manner. Until we as a people realize that correcting our bad ways that is somehow engrained in our culture and stop blaming government or others we are doomed to fail.

  9. sweetness
    March 3, 2010

    APPLAUDED!!!! I am in total agreement with you sir on this one. I moved away from Dominica as a child and was so appalled when I called Ministry of Education to ask for some valuable information. I would recommend continued customer service workshops with the collabarative support of the government. SAD SAD…

  10. March 3, 2010

    I AAAAAAAAAGGGGGGGGGRRRRRRRRRREEEEEEEEE

    AND SOME DOMINICANS TOOO LAZY AND SETTLE FOR MEDIOCRACY. ONCE THEY GET PAID AT THE END OF THE MONTH THEY DO NOT GIVE ISH ABOUT ANYTHING ELSE.

    EMPLOYERS NEED TO REGULARLY TRAIN THEIR STAFF IN THE FIELD THEY ARE WORKING IN. SOME EMPLOYERS DONT CARE IF YOU WORK FOR THEM FOR 20 YEARS AND NEVER GET A CXC. ONCE U GET THE JOB DONE THEY DONT GIVE AN ISH.

    BUT ITS TIME PEOPLE START SETTING HIGHER GOALS FOR THEMSELVES, STOP BLABBERING AND POLITICKING WHEN WORK IS NOT BEING DONE PROPERLY.

  11. Yes-AH
    March 3, 2010

    In Dominica BANKS and BUSINESS PLACES BELIEVE IS A FAVOR YOU ARE DOING FOR THEM…THATS WHY I DOES PUT THEM IN THERE PLACE….CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT SIMPLE AND YES THERE ARE SOME NASTY AND ROTTEN CUSTOMERS OUT THERE OH YES BUT THERE ARE THE ONE BRING IN THE MONEY.

  12. Dubiqois
    March 3, 2010

    MOT,

    You make a valid point. It is, indeed, a reciprocal relationship. However, since the customer is the transient entity in the relationship, it would be beneficial for the person giving the customer service to to take the high road when things snag.

  13. BB
    March 3, 2010

    @ MOT: I don’t believe that Dubois meant that the customer has the right to be rude. Customer Service begins with the service provider. First there’s an approach then a reaction. If there’s an “I don’t care” approach there will be an an equally harsh or harsher reaction.

  14. March 3, 2010

    @ Dubiqois: No, what i’m saying is, people are human beings first and foremost. And it behooves the customer to behave in a courteous way too. Are you trying to say that because you are a customer demanding service you have all your rights to treat the worker like crap? Is that what you are saying?

  15. ricco
    March 3, 2010

    I had to LOL at a few of our Dominican experiences esp the one where the waitress bring two tsp of sugar. LOL How we gwan move forward, rasta? LOL

  16. Mrs P
    March 3, 2010

    i agree with the person who wrote the complaint.It is true.Its about time that we Dominicans get professional.We all go to other countries and work and abide by rules and regulations,but here people think they can do what they like.And when you try to inform them that their behavior is not appropriate,they respond by cussing you and telling you that Dominica we are and so forth.We desperately need training and that goes for all companies and businesses in Dominica.I am appalled sometimes to be called a Dominican when i see my people behave in such ways and manners.

    Its about time Dominica go forward and change that attitude,because its a disgrace and very unattractive for investors and others willing to come into Dominica.

    Very Concerned.

  17. I Agree
    March 3, 2010

    MOT here you go talking nonesense and contradicting yourself? You say customer service begins with the customer? So why were you so ungraciously turned away for asking to use the facilities in Miami? Did you ask politely or were you the typical rude Dominican? Did you appear like a bum or a homeless person? Did you come across as a thief? You see where I am going with this? What did you do as a customer to get the bad service you received?

    And what foolishness is that about the restaurant’s regular customer are their bread and butter? So it’s okay to cater to only to regular customers? If a place has 10 regular customers, is that profit from those 10 regular customers enough to sustain you as a business? Aren’t businesses in the business to attract as many customers as possible so that their profits get higher? Look at KFC. Will you ever see KFC saying we doh have enough chicken for you only for our regular customers? That is why Carl Nasseif will run all the way to the bank because them people understand how to ring every penny from all you and they understand how to make EVERYBODY become a REGULAR customer, not just a handful. You do that by making sure you are well stocked, that you not playing favorites, and that my experience will make me want to come back and I will tell others to go patronize your business because of that good experience. That is just business. You have a poduct for sale and you sell it to the maximum.

    So you see how foolish and backwards your train of thought was? No I am not a foreigner but at the same time I have visited that particular place several times. So my money not as good? Stupes man, Your way of thnking is typical of these businesses that is why we so backwards. You people just don’t understand economics.

  18. Hmmm
    March 3, 2010

    God bless Dominica…Like the PM said, let’s stop focussing on the negatives. There are two sides: good and evil…choose your side of the fence…PEACE OUT!!

  19. Well
    March 3, 2010

    This is all so true and it’s a crying shame that the so called trainers of customer service here don’t seem to get it. I went into a business place sometime ago and the young lady at the counter well-dressed and beautiful but she had one flaw that made her ugly…SHE WAS CHEWING GUM…I asked her if tourist come into the business place…”yes” … I then asked her if no one ever told her that it is unprofessional and ugly to be chewing on the job? “NO” and she continues but those in charge do it themselves. I said but didn’t have any customer service training? “NO, but I will ask a question cause I never heard that a person cannot chew gum at work before”. I said that this is making you look ugly and in your case you never know who is looking and you could have lost a great opportunity because you failed to realise that chewing gum at work in that manner was off-putting and unprofessional. Think about yourself and your future not that of you boss. Just think they are your employers what have to prove. You are two a penny….easily replaced. Attitude and self-respect is important wherever you work and you don’t need your boss to tell you that you must present yourself respectable on the job. You are very pretty and well-dressed but appear ugly with the chewing and being unaware how ugly you come across.

    Another place and the young lady is speaking rather unprofessionally to the customer. I walked up to her when the person left and asked her some questions…her answer…”that is how I can speak and it’s not for me it’s for the chinese I work” ….PHEW… so I asked her if the chinese owners is holding her future hostage? She couldn’t even understand that. These young people only think about the $2.00 coming to them on pay day..they never think beyond that. So I said to her what if the owners decide to let you go because of you they are losing customers..what will you do? “Well I’ll just get another job nah” Please who is going to take you on with that attitude I told her. She walked away from me and started a conversation with another employee. Some of these persons believe that they are doing their employers a favor what they don’t realise is that they can easily be replaced. If you are seeking employment you don’t need your employer to train you in how you deal with customers especially at stores and supermarkets. Which is one of the reasons I pay so much money to return to the UK or shop online in the US. Just imagine how much money places like Astaphans and the chinese shops not to even mention the local Dominican shop owners lose because their employees are ill-mannered and totally lacking customer service skills. Any place I walk into and don’t like the tone of the staff I walk straight back out and go elsewhere hopefully to find some semblance of customer service attitude. Even though they are trained some persons are just not caught out to work in some places.

    Another place puts me on hold but I am hearing everything that they are saying and the conversation have nothing to do with my query…then she says “hold on eh he coming” but he’s at the other end chatting her up about the weekend.

    Another place I asked on the phone about an item tells me “I have no idea when we getting more” If you in business for more than a year and you order goods you should have an idea when you next order most especially if you know exactly where you source your products from. You already know the time frame and pattern of ordering.

    You call on the phone to find out if a product is available “yes it is, we have a few in stock” I go in to collect and pay someone else says “I am sorry but we don’t have any more in stock”…sometimes you just want to thrash some of these idiots who don’t take time to do their work and assume that all Dominicans are like-minded. Some of us have in-fact travelled, lived in a civilized country where the customer is vital for the business survival. Somebody out there help them please cause Dominica will disappear because of ignorance to change and development.

  20. Dubiqois
    March 3, 2010

    Dominicans must stop slicing into each other so negatively. Let share our point-of-view without degrading our fellow country men/women.

    Do not forget that you are not the only ones on the information super highway. Case in point: If a person is thinking of vacationing in Dominica and googles for information, he/she might get DNO’s link. The person may be curious and read some of our comments. Our comments may actually influence a decision. You never know. This is not the age of donkey and banana. It is an age of globalization and service. We either get it, or we suffer through it. It is your decision.

  21. Dubiqois
    March 3, 2010

    To: MOT, You are joking, right? Customer service begins with the customer? Think about it and come around again. Take at look at Google, Apple, and other success companies. What is the common thread to their success. A great product with poor customer service is a dead product. Take a look at what happened to Dell.

    Let us step back and think about this for a minute. Whether we like it or not, Dominicans are just beginning to understand what customer service and its impact on customers, clients, etc. It is the oraganization’s responsibility to provide the necessary customer service training to its employees.

    Unless the employee undertands the correlation between the service provider and the recipient; and the how poor customer service creates an adverse impact on the organization and its balance sheet, things will continue to remain as they are.

    We are new to the service sector. Customer service and hospitality training will be vital to our continued growth – particularly as we move from an agricultural base economy to a service base economy.

  22. Anonymous
    March 3, 2010

    Couldn’t agree more with this article. It goes a lot further… pissed off, you just scratched the surface.

  23. STRAIGHT FORWARD POOSSIE
    March 3, 2010

    In Dominica Customer Service is lacking to the highest. You never see you go in a store or business place and say good morning and no body doh answer you. They all looking at you like thieves? You are a local person. Let a tourist with light skin come inside the same place and you will see and hear the difference. The get American accent one time. You never go at some business and you talking politely and is to the wind you talking ? or you asking a question and they doh even want to answer you ? like , who they them to come and trouble me nor. Dominican employees need customer service training every theree months. Casing point ” you go at a money transfer place in Portsmouth, there is a young lady there she always vex, she sings loud when you are infront of her, and not even a pleasant face while you are there. She behaves like she take all her problem at home and bring to work. You pass through the other department and you are greeted properly even if you are not doing business with them go the the money transfrer area and behaviour that is not called for. To make matters worst the employee not even from Portsmouth. I am to wonder is that the way people on the western side of Dominica behaves?

  24. March 3, 2010

    @ I agree…while you making a valid point about food finishing early on carnival saturday afternoon….i think you will agree that while you and your group of friends only came down to sewo for a week, the other FAITHFUL REGULAR customers are the main-stay/bread and butter earnings for the restaurant.

    I notice that many of you here are overseas based dominicans, but i recently had an experience that smacks of Unprofessionalism at best, and Racism at the worst. I was in downtown Miami. I went to the American Airlines office which is a tiny office located between gate 7 and 8 of the Miami Heats Stadium. I asked the counter clerk ( a white man) if i could use the washroom facilities. He told me No. Point Blank. Without even looking at me. I wasn’t a terrorist al qaeda or otherwise. I would even have paid for the use of the facilities, I was that desperate.

    So when all of you “Domericans and Dombritish” on here posting all of your comments about Dominica, remember that customer service starts with YOU the customer…check your attitude when you come in at the door. INPUT=OUTPUT. The attitude you give, is the attitude you get right back.

  25. okay Then
    March 3, 2010

    As a local businessman have you sought anyway of possibly coming together with other businesses and having a small training session probono for interested persons in the CS business. Also if you want this stopped for example have you asked your staff to take names of persons leaving messages so that if it is not to your liking then you can call the institution, with a name so the person/s can be dealt with accordingly or the companies can seek in doing a refresher course in CSM(customer service management).
    Have you sought to write letters to maybe a few of the really “bad” ones. Just calling out NBD on this forum with no specifics really is sort of tacky.

    I must admit that something has to be done about our CSM in Dominica persons have to understand the fundamentals especially the fact that its the customers who are paying your salaries at the end of the day,so without the customers there is no business. It may go a bit further with unbearable bosses, really sickening management and obviuosly it trickles down tro management. I don;t think many are in the position to just leave there jobs because of the environment knowing how difficult it is to find work in this country.

    It’s many factors and may not just be the employees’ faults.

    By the way when did “peeps” make it to dictionary OR is it the urbandictionary.

  26. March 3, 2010

    The observations by the writer of this article have been well documented and privately discussed for many years. Service in Dominica stinks.

    And I do not wish to entertain the view that Dominica is not the only place; that is not an excuse. The attitude of the workers must be adjusted by Management if found unsatisfactory to the customers. But here again, who are the managers?

    For all intents and purposes, in Dominica, Management is inaccessible or always busy, giving the impression of evasive indifference. Let these people know that potential investors are pissed off!
    Some people in business are not businesslike, especially in the hospitality sector. One has to know the difference between juice and lemonade.

    It will not be stressed sufficiently that service people are under the microscopic scrutiny of visitors and even the colloquial nuances tolerated by us might appear odd and inhospitable to them.

  27. Young Man in Dominica
    March 3, 2010

    Thank god for this article please people take not please people take note it is very very true rite here in dominica

  28. sigma-1n
    March 3, 2010

    PISSED-OFF is giving a good objective critique.

    DNO Admin should live this commentary at the top of the news agenda for some time to allow the maximum number of people to read and digest it.

    Dominica needs to get all these sorts of attitudes right. Good professionalism in the population at large generally helps the economy to develop better and faster, when people are doing their jobs well.

    Though these comments are about business in particular those attitudes are more general. In Dominica there still exists a certain kind of naive thinking which should have been confined to history a long time ago. The whole population needs to move up a few gears in the way they think.

    Better training in all areas should be a great help. However it does help get the ball rolling when individuals tell it like it is.

  29. I Agree
    March 3, 2010

    I agree with the writer of the letter. I blame the owners of the businesses for not instilling proper etiquette in their workers. The worse is at restaurants. When I visit other islands you can tell if the owner is a foreigner or not. Places with foreign owners or managers give the best service because they fully understand the concept of good service equals customer retention hence profit margins. Simple not true? Not in Dominica. You go into a business and is a favor they doing you. Mean time they bawling things are hard, we cannot get jobs. stupes.

    Big carnival Saturday a few of my firends and I were looking for food at 1.30 pm. We walked into a restaurant and they man boldly told us food finish. It doh have more food. At a restaurant on a day when there are so many people in for the festivities you running out of food? Who tell you. While we’re standing outside trying to figure out where to go, a whole set of people walked by us and went into the restuarant. I said to one of them don’t bother, there’s no more food. One of them turn to me and said we come here every Saturday so they have our food for us. WHAT? Pure nonesense that going on in Dominica. Pure backwardness.

  30. Traveller
    March 3, 2010

    I agree with pissed off. So true eh! I believe that all business personnel whether small or big and their staff should be trained in customer service and etiquettes of businesses.

  31. Femmedominique
    March 2, 2010

    We tend to think “niceness” will take us somewhere in DA but I assure you it wont. When you try to teach (so called) Customer Service Representatives they decome defensive and think “you the Customer” has the problem. I remember some years ago, I purchased an outfit at a well known store in Roseau, when I got home I realized I had quite a few of the same colors in my closet, Next day I took the outfit back to the store knowing there were other colors in the very same outfit.The store owner REFUSED to EXCHANGE the outfit for me in another color.I then asked for my money back and she further refused, I had to leave her outfit at her store and go to the Police station.In offices including Government Headquarters its the same attitude, you stop at a desk and ask for a particular person or office and the individual will point a finger, you have to LOOK to see where or who they are pointing to. it becomes so fustrating, recently I sent my little deposit to my Bank in DA, the Money Order was in a SEALED envelope, address to the Office of the GM,my friend who knew what was in the envelope, asked to see the GM’s secretary, she was told “give it to me for her”she reluctantly gave it to the person at the desk, and right there and then my SEALED buisness was opened and she HANDED the Money Order to my friend and said “you can follow the line and just deposit it”.My problem is not the desk person opening the envelope or not, what if my friend was not suppose to know my buisness.I mean its outrageous how they do things with the Customers in mind. I am sure most people are fully aware it wont take them too far, BUT WHO CARES? I guess.

  32. BB
    March 2, 2010

    Addie and Stevy the tone of the letter is belligerent and agressive but it is very well justified. “Positive” feedback should only be given when deserved. This writer had a negative experience and expressed his/her viewpoint. The negativity stems from the negative treatment recieved. The tone should call managers to action within thier various firms. They should be exposed to more letters like the one written so that they make efforts to change the way in which the employees are viewed by customers.

  33. March 2, 2010

    I am in total agreement with the writer. I like the way he said it, raw and dry.
    No watery thing. And as for the Bus Drivers, they need to organise and stop hustling the customers.

  34. March 2, 2010

    To Isle of Beauty,

    This is the exact thing that the person who posted the letter to the EDITOR is complaining about. Do you really believe that all we need to do is go to the place of business and address the issue with the one who is in charge? Again, you do not understand. This is not something that is being done by any one particular person. This is a culture. It is endemic. It has to be addressed from a NATIONAL standpoint. The entire business culture has to be changed.
    We in Dominica need it and we better do it soon. It is better putting it out in the open than trying to deal with it HUSH-HUSH.
    People, We need to do better.

  35. Anonymous
    March 2, 2010

    October 2008 while visiting home i was in Roseau looking for something to eat at about 10pm with a few friends. Did not want K.F.C and after driving aound for 15 mins noticed one popular restaurant was still open. We quickly parked the jeep and proceeded to the porch of the restaurant. We ordered sandwiches and local fruit juices. One of my friends had grapefruit juice and did not like the way it tasted. He asked if he could get a different juice since everyone else was satisfied with their selections. The waiter’s response was “what is wrong with it? All day people have been drinking it and never complained.” Friend said “its not sweet”. The waiter went inside and came back with a few tablespoon of sugar. LOL. TRUE STORY. We got to empower our people in to make impactful(positive) decisions. Our country needs to have better service and professionalism in all sectors from GORVERNMENT to SMALL BUSINESSES.

  36. ouboutou
    March 2, 2010

    Now Now Now Mr Pissed Off….
    First things first: The cashier at IRD doesn’t know when it is somebody’s first second,third time paying their license. The form doesn’t say that, nor does he has a data base in front of him with such information. Get your facts straight.

    On other issues, i agree we have real bad customer relations on the island. Real bad. There are times I go to stores, greet the clerks, and never get a response, yet they will continue talking with no regards to my presence. I simply walk out and take my business elsewhere.

    But one of the problems is, sometimes the employee are not to be blamed. They act on the advice of their employers. So we have to be careful there.

    My wife recently went to a sewing place in Potters Ville and she was treated so badly, she told the manager, you have just lost a customer, the guy simply responded by saying, that’s no problem, your sister will continue to come here.

    All in all, the situation needs to be addressed and the sooner, the better.

    I hope someone in authority, or someone who has the potential to do so, organize a customer relationship workshop on the island.

    Maybe the trade unions should take up such a role.

    God bless

  37. Need Help
    March 2, 2010

    The people need to be trained before they start working in these positions. In other countries you go through a two weeks paid trainning before can actually begin work. Well it would be good if the business places conduct some Customer Service Seminars.
    I Know of someone who is qualified to give these seminar in the person of Gloria Joseph who worked wiht Cable and Wireless.

  38. V
    March 2, 2010

    Great customer sevice is the easiest thing to administer. It can be as simple as just been nice to every single patron for whom the sevice is given. The worker should be properly trained to do so. In developed nations, most companies have training videos and customer service is usually one of the first ones shown to new hires. There are telephone and written surveys given to customers for feedback on service, usually for cash prizes or discounts. Thats how serious this is taken especially in this economic climate.

    In certain forms of business you have to let the customer win within reason. At the end of the day remember they are the ones paying your wages. A company’s success is dependent upon the working people on the frontlines not necessarily the infrastructure that’s put into place by a C.E.O. There are many companies or small businesses that offer the same service or product for the same price. So to win you have to have the right people with the right attitude.

    I always say to my associates once you’ve clocked in for work you are on stage so let the show begin. If they can’t get it done the way it is sppose to then someone else will. The key is loving what you do and been put in a stituation to be succesful.

    GREAT SERVICE AND PROFESSIONALISM STARTS AT THE TOP AND TRICKLES DOWN. ENTHUSIASM IS INFECTIOUS. With that said management need to set the standards. Every individual need’s to be trained properly in order to get maximum performance. WE IN DOMINICA NEED TO RESPECT EACH OTHER. I have always had serivice issues whenever i return home and so have my family there.

    WE NEED TO FIX THIS IN ORDER TO MOVE OUR BELOVED COUNTRY FORWARD. INDIVIDUALS WHO VISIT OUR BELOVED COUNTRY ARE USED TO A CERTAIN LEVEL OF SERVICE. IF THEY DON’T GET THAT LEVEL OF SAERVICE THEY ARE LIKELY TO TAKE THERE BUSINESS ELSE AND TELL AN AVERAGE OF 11 PEOPLE. WE ALL KNOW HOW QUICKLY BAD NEWS CAN SPREAD.

  39. Anonymous
    March 2, 2010

    I TOTALLY AGREE, WE AS DOMINICANS REALLY NEED TO EXHIBIT SOME LEVEL OF PROFESSIONALISM, WHEN WE APPLY FOR A JOB, LET’S KNOW WHAT IT ENTAILS, IT IS TIME WE REALIZE IN THE WORKPLACE, WE ARE DEALING WITH HUMAN BEINGS, NOT TREES OR SOME OTHER OBJECT SO LET’S TREAT EACH OTHER WITH RESPECT..PEOPLE’S MATTERS ARE PRIVATE MATTERS TO THEM.
    BE CONFIDENTIAL, KEEP WORK RELATED MATTER, PRIVATE MATTERS IN THE WORK PLACE AND NOT ON THE STREETS!
    WE SPEAK OF PROGRESS, BUT WE SHOWER REGRESS…

  40. Jayson
    March 2, 2010

    Anytime I go to any business or government institute I’ve noticed that i have received better customer service from men than from women.

  41. D/can in STT.
    March 2, 2010

    well said,i can certainly understand your frustration.I live in STT.and come to DA every year Only because it is my homeland.the way the clerks and cashers look at u when u address them is enough to just leave the damn purchase and just walk out the store.
    if they suspect u are just visiting i swear the plain hostile when u ask them the price of something or to bag your purchase.

  42. haha!
    March 2, 2010

    well some dominicans are known for that and some business places have that like its a reputation or something and they just cannot let go. its like you begging for service. they will even tell you wait i doing something. or they actually on the phone like they didnt see you walk in to atleast acknowledge with a sign or something and so that you know, Ok, he or she saw me. but u entering a place and you actually have to stand there minutes way before they can actually give some sort of assistance.

    although there are other places where the customer service is somewhat good, where the reps really try their best to have the customers in their best interest, its also sometimes hard to work when you have to attend many customers and some are not willing to wait the moment especially if they see you with someone else. but what you said is so true and i applaud you for bringing this out lol lol

    but again, its so true, not only in dominica, but i will tell u one time i went to st lucia. its like i was like i had to literally act like a man on crack and talk a lot of bullshit for them to pay attention to me in a store i went to. i kept looking for help no one around to tell me ok this is this and this is that. but in dominica you know you would walk around in astaphans or whitchurch and eat an apple even if you bought it from inside. well here goes after begging for some service for almost 10 minutes in this Special store of st lucia near castries, i was eating an apple and here comes this personnel saw me and came from nowhere and i was asked not to eat in the store. i was like OH REALLY just like that i said it and i told that personnel.. i guess actions speak louder than words, cause i have been looking for some service here and i ended up asking a young man if he works here who looked at me and asked, “do u see me dressed in this place uniform?” and now im eating because im hungry on my own time and now u can hear me through such action i did but couldnt hear when i was asking for help… oh she looked at me like.. .i say dont look at me n i walked out.

    so clearly its not only dominica.. but seems like this is something that is in dominica workplaces that just doesnt seem to get away.

    some of them even BOOWAY!! ontop of it all. like what u asking me question for, cant u see for yourself. that is definitely not the right manner and some people really need some INTENSE training!

  43. W
    March 2, 2010

    All of the problems we face in Dominica are absolutely connected. If we as a people lack a consciousness of worth, nothing in some view to look back at and be proud of, you lose all meaning of self pride and self determination, we become dependent on someone else. Most damaging in my opinion, is when you have a nation or generation that is being brought up thinking that anywhere else is better than home, the constant desire to leave your yard for some else’s, you are left with a people that is not motivated, nor intellectually independent, a people that think there is nothing to fight for you end up losing all sense of national pride or any interest in it.

    All things manifest from thought and there you have it, the problem this article presents to us.

    We have to create a thought process in Dominica that is revolutionary and I kept saying it, Self Determination it is a beautiful thing, we should embrace it, it brings great joy and sense of ultimate accomplishment. So you see, it has to start with the perception of ourselves, we can’t have real development in our nation if we don’t instill in our minds a mental attitude of purpose.

    We are smart and absolutely capable people, we just lack the self and national interest to take us to the place I believe we all want to be.

    It is all related!

  44. So True
    March 2, 2010

    … the other problem is, people are so small minded. If you call with a concern, instead of dealing with it right away they will chat amongst themselves, because to some it is “beff”. If you go for a loan in the bank … chances are a few people already know about it, when in fact they should not disclose that info (and trust me I know what I am talking about this is not a they say story). There is no professionalism or confidentialty. Elsewhere most of them would be dismissed. God bless this country I pray one day for change. Professionalism and good customer service is just pure common sense …but to most I guess it is nonsense or the last thing on the list of ethics. Companies wake up and train your staff be proactive because it seems most of you are BLIND or in an everlasting sleep!!!

  45. Domlucian
    March 2, 2010

    So sad but true!!! Such a setback for all the hard work thats put in place for tourism!

  46. only
    March 2, 2010

    You said it all. Most employees don’t know what customer service entails. That is the fault of management. But maybe they don’t know either. Somebody needs training and fast!

    So what level are you currently on Dominica? If you don’t have good customer service you will never get any higher than you already are. Are you listening Mr. PM?

    And anyone worrying about tourism should worry about the poor attitude and lack of customer service everyone encounters in Dominica . And you really think that tourism will grow with all of this going on.

  47. So True
    March 2, 2010

    I have been saying the same thing for years about customer service in Dominica. And unforutnately nothing has changed and I fear it never will. The thing is customer service is almost completely absent in Dominica both in small and big organizations. I don’t want to completely generalize because there is about 1% that is operating okay. As someone mentioned before, its like you are beggars…you are begging them to take your money when it fact they need it to survive and to maintain their businesses. Dominca is such a beautiful place with beautiful people yet I don’t understand why good customer service is rare. Likewise, there are so many educated people living there…some have lived abroad so I would like to think that they are not that dumb or blind from what they’ve experienced eslewhere.

    Unfortunately, the issue is not only in Dominica it is within the other Caribbean islands as well. What they don’t realize is that customer service is the key and foundation for a business. Without proper customer service you run the risk of losing customers or tourist not wanting to visit the country again.

    Ironically, I was having a conversation about the horrible customer service in Dominica and some of the other caribbean countries 2 weeks ago in Barbados airport because I visited Dominica for carnival…my hope is to offer some customer service seminars in Dominca and hope that companies will take advantage of it because I really don’t think those in management or the small business owners realize how horrible the service they offer. I am at the point where I think they are all blind. What a sad thing, because a little smile, thank you, you’re welcome, can I help you???? can go a long way. Most seem so angry to be there…alas, if you don’t like it move on do something else that does not include serving people.

    I commend the writer for posting his experience….So true!!!

  48. Sad
    March 2, 2010

    I feel the frustration of the writer. The behaviour described in highly unprofessional. This is an all round problem in the country. Training can be provided (as I know it is being provided in some instances) but the individual employees must practice what they are taught. Some of these things are just basic courtesy anyway. Many of the institutions are now staffed with young people who don’t care two hoots about anyone and anything. They are basically just filling a slot until they move on to study. In some cases all they are concerned about is fulfilling the duties listed on their job description. I don’t get a sense this is about to change because the training is provided in many instances yet it does not translate during interaction with the general public.

  49. Isle of beauty
    March 2, 2010

    Inspite of the poor customer service that may be prevalent, posting such comments and having others respond in such a negative way is not solving the problem. Why don’t we instead go to the business and bank managers and let them know of the service/services that were rendered and complain in a professional way instead of posting this for the whole world to read. Sometimes we are not even aware of how we treat people or each other until someone brings it to our attention. If that’s the way things have been done at home ever since we know ourselves, it is left to us to address them in a positive way and work together to create some solutions. I have noticed that we are using DNO to air our filthy laundry. We cannot advance by lashing out at each other and pulling each other down like crabs in a bucket. We need to stop this negative attitude and try to solve our poroblems with wisdom and common sense. This is our problem and if we do not unite to solve them we cannot depend on other countries to do so for us.

    Sometimes when we travel we have a tendency to compare Dominica with other countries. We need, and must build Dominica together, instead of tearing each other apart.

  50. magwe sa
    March 2, 2010

    We are all in agreement however let us use this medium to creat a change. Instead of politiking let us come up with ideas to effect change . Let us find ways to get the government to notice the need to tackle this problem. We have spoken about this issue with the politicians for the last 20 years in NY in London, Miami.
    I believe that the business people must lead the charge- the business people must conduct mandatory training on a yearly basis and the businesses must also insure order and control among the cutomers- impliment good security. Let the customers form lines and respect “the first come first serve ” rule. The same goes for the mobile/temporary bars at the various public activities. Creole fest etc.

    The upper brass of the police must also examine police interaction.(I witnessed the most embarrasing incident in D/ca where an immigration officer was soo rude to a visitor). If we display such terrible behavior at the port of entry -what a first impression. The custom department must also train their officers.

    To effect change we must start from the top and the government workers -they need a complete make over.

  51. Stevy
    March 2, 2010

    Addie I agree with your observation. In fact I would also suggest some manner of professionalism from the writter as the way in which he/she complain is very insulting and ofensive. The writter’s complain should not be neglected as the service industry in D/ca need to be seriously evaluated. I believe that the education system should look at implimenting course(s) in schools that would focus on the service industry but also focus on social engagement.
    Everytime I visit Dominica (HOME) it breaks my heart to see that our service industry is at such a low standard. The lack of respect and the rudeness of our people is definetly not inviting. This ugly culture must be taken down and we must start with the kids.

  52. Dr. Finger
    March 2, 2010

    We need serious attitude adjustments in Dominica. Customer service is non existent as far as I am concerned. However, people working in that department are usually overworked and underpaid so their attitude is not going to change. Granted, they should be happy to have a job but the simple fact is they only smile during the job interview and for the first week there after. I look forward to businesses getting together with the public sector, unions and other stake holders to declare a customer service month. Not day or week, but month. Hopefully that will drive the point home and we will start seeing changes.

  53. Dominican abroad
    March 2, 2010

    I can sense the frustration and it is troubling to know that customer service is so poor. However, this has to be addressed from the top. The banks have not put this part in place in their business protocol and so it is not being done. If it was in place i think things would better.

  54. Dominican abroad
    March 2, 2010

    This is sad but true. Although I am not a business person. I can sense the frustration in the posts. Dominians need a customer service make over. And based on what I’m reading this is a major problem if banks and other establishments are acting in such unprofessional manner. However, it starts from the top. I

  55. Toot Too bouche
    March 2, 2010

    Pissed off, I personally have decided to come to DA and give free CUSTOMER SERVICE seminars.I was treated soooo badly at two(2) business places in DA,I will not detail the occurences on here.What I can say is something must be done.

    People are given jobs because of who they know and half of these persons don’t know what they are doing.Don’t give up on DA ,there are plans in the pipe line.I was talking to someone and they told me “there will be resistance,but it must be done”.

    We as Dcans that can do better must do better.

  56. Ashibou
    March 2, 2010

    just doing business in Dominica is frustrating .. any kind of business especially when dealing with merchants .. it seems that there are no customers in Dominica , only beggars.

  57. March 2, 2010

    doh check me check yr self

  58. D/ca to de Bone
    March 2, 2010

    You are totally right our people are very very on professional. Hope we learn from this comment above..

  59. labourrrrrr power
    March 2, 2010

    hmmmmm

  60. niceness
    March 2, 2010

    As hard as it is to read, it is so true, in the entire Country, from ministry, banks and the small shops, suppermarkets, there is no customer service, people have the dont care attitude towards customers, I was just done in Dominica for the carnival season and i keep saying to myself what is going to happen in the long run to my Country, because the way people treat you when you approach them at stores, in the markets, the banks is so terrible there is no professionalism, its like as if you have to buy and some will come out and tell you if you dont want it go somewhere else then, this is danagerous attitudes especially with the growing development pouring into Dominica now, more people are moving to Dominica and investing in Dominica and they are seeing this lack of customer service and lack of professionalism, employee have this don’t care attitude towards customers, you enter an establisment and instead of getting good morning how can i help you, you are greated with an eye looking you up and down, you go to the market, asking prices of diferent items they tell you we are busy now, how can you be busy for a customer when you are selling, every customer who walks into your doors should be treated with respect and try to figure out how you could solve and serve this customer to the fullest of your ablility, so that this customer would leave the establishment satisfied and willing to return, customers should not be treat like they have to buy or else you could leave, this is so unprofessional. Pissed off you are so right and we really need as Dominicans to talk about this and debate about this serous situation which is need of drastic change and training.

  61. AP
    March 2, 2010

    How true. Sad thing is… it’s not only DOminica… it seems prevalent in the entire Caribbean. We seem to take a casual, lackadaisical attitude about everything… and the way we conduct business is no exception. Maybe we can get Dominica to pass privacy laws and somehow get government to simplify processes.

    There’s no erason why you should have to go to three or four different places or gov’t agencies to get a driver’s license, for example. This is why productivity is so low… we take too long to do things….unnecessarily. We need to streamline business processes… Where are the consulting businesses – maybe they should offer that service? And customers/consumers are not complaining so businesses/gov’t keep on doing it.

  62. Addie
    March 2, 2010

    This writer is very belligerent. Positive feedback in a better tone is taken more seriously than negativity. The topic may be one of great concern and something that should be taken seriously. Yet, the tone in which the message was delivered is totally unbecoming.

  63. Justina
    March 2, 2010

    That what they do in DA NO CUSTOMER SERVICE AT ALL. I WORK IN CUSTOMER SERVICE MYSELF AND EVERYTIME I AM IN DA I GET PISSED OFF. THE QUEUES CAN BE AS LONG AS WHATEVER AND THE SUPERVISORS WONT BADGE OR STEP IN TO DO OR SAY ANYTHING. AS FOR GOING TO A SUPERMARKET THE CASHIER’S FACES ARE MORE WAX THAN CANDLE WAX SO DONT EXPECT A THANK U WHEN U HAD THEM UR MONEY.

    TELL ME HOW DO THEY EXPECT TO GET ANY FURTHER WITH TOURISM WHEN CUSTOMER SERVICE IS AT IT’S LOWEST.

  64. .......I.........
    March 2, 2010

    Well said!

    Crazy thing is many people wil continue to do the samething. Imagine I call a private buisness and I wanted to speak with the owner becuase he is directly involved in his buisness and it would be hi I would have to conduct the transaction through anyways. The receptionist tell me to ask her the question and when I gave her a vague but understandable question for her to answer for me se tell me let her get her boss. She come back and still wanted more info , I’m not sure if it was for her to know my buisness but you can trust that I didnt tell her one damn thing. Anyway, I called it a day and I won’t be contacting any buisnesses with Dominicans anymore.

    Thanks

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