Source | LinkedIn : By Jagdish Murthy
Recently I was following up with a client on a proposal my firm had submitted on their urgent request. Lots of painstaking work went into this, and several clarifications and hard negotiations followed before I received a call informing me that our proposal was accepted. After waiting for more than a week, I requested the client for a confirmatory official communication, only to be told that it was work in progress.
Considering the urgency expressed earlier, this was surprising and so I met up with the client to understand reasons for the delay. After some probing I learned that they did not want to incur this expenditure in the financial year ! Was there some sudden development? Alas, none that my team could glean. And despite using all my persuasive powers and logic (that it was budgeted), I could not prevail.
Meeting over, I made my way to the reception area to wait for a cab I had booked. The receptionist requested me to wait in another room as the Housekeeping staff were doing some work. And so I waited in a space adjoining a meeting room and could hear an obviously senior executive exhorting a sales team to push their clients and meet their sales targets asap so that revenue could be be accounted in this financial year !
“Double Standards: When a situation is desirable for one group but deplorable for another” – (from the Internet)
I reflected on the irony of it ! Here we were, a competent but small firm trying hard to render quality service at economical prices to multi million dollar companies – only to be fobbed off by a client who had double standards. Perhaps someone had to check a box on the to do list. Why the urgency if the idea was to do it in the next financial year? We would still have done the necessary – after all, it’s not as if we would have refused a client request. Companies with a poor work ethic resort to such practices. And while my team and I learned some hard lessons in this I couldn’t help asking: Why do some companies indulge in double standards and practices that erode goodwill and give business a bad name? Any idea? Any guesses?