Service business is for the service minded

I have a serious question for Mr. Anand Mahindra, a man I deeply admire and look upto for his business acumen and integrity. Mr. Mahindra might not remember but I asked him the same question 10 years back on email since at that time I didn’t blog and Twitter had not arrived !

The question is – Are you serious about the Club Mahindra business ? Mr. Mahindra had replied earlier to say that he was indeed deeply interested in Club Mahindra. The very fact that he had responded to an email from a random customer of Club Mahindra was amazing and since then I have been a fan. But I have to ask this question again.

Picture this – The customer comes into the Fun Zone to use the wi-fi. The table that is convenient to use has a carrom board placed on top of it. The customer requests one of the Fun Zone execs to keep the carrom board on another table. He does that and walks off. The table which was vacated had powder all over it and the customer could not use it. The customer waits for a minute to see if the exec is planning on wiping the table clean but he just goes off to use the computer !! Two other executives are standing around talking amongst themselves. The customer goes and asks for a cloth to wipe the table, is given a pack of paper tissues, goes around and wipes the table down while three service executives stand around talking amongst themselves. Should the customer get furious or not ??

Or Picture this – the customer books a one bedroom for two days because while booking online, the studio is not available. The customer has a studio booking for nearly 5 days and goes to the reception to say “can I continue using the same studio room for the next two days as well as I don’t want to pack and move to the one bedroom for just two days”. The morning shift person says let me try. Then at 10 p.m (!!) no less, 10 p.m the customer gets a call to say, please vacate the room tomorrow and shift to a one bedroom. While the customer protests, the evening shift person has no answer… so the customer just puts the phone down. The next morning the customer gets everything packed and no call comes to shift the room. Upon enquiry the morning shift person says, we just had a cancellation, why don’t you continue using the studio room. Now, should the customer get furious or not ?? And as Club Mahindra, you lost the opportunity to delight two customers and pissed one off completely. If a studio customer was given the one bedroom, he would have been delighted with the upgrade and the studio customer wanting to continue in the studio room would have been delighted too …. now the studio customer is hopping mad because time got wasted in packing stuff two days in advance.

As you might have guess Mr. Mahindra – the customer in the above two incidents is my husband and I. While we love the location of your resorts and the rooms are awesome, here’s what completely puts us off EVERY SINGLE time and thats about 8 different resorts that we have stayed in –

  1. Directions to reach the resorts are put up in front of the resort, never on the way, especially near forks in the road. We have missed our way or have had to ask several times before reaching the resort.
  2. Your “activities” people expect every guest to participate in every activity. Great thought, but some guests are not the “active” kinds and may want to be differently “active”. Let them be. Constantly calling the room to invite guests for activities makes me keep the phone off the hook. I may be taking the holiday to relax, vegetate and not be active !!
  3. Food sucks. Either get amazing chefs and get a fix on the food or just don’t bother. The menu can be limited further, but food has to taste good. There is probably one resort that can be an exception to this, which is the Coorg resort, but thats it.
  4. Hire people who have a service bent of mind or atleast train them in customer service – this incident of executives just standing around while the customer is cleaning up or lifting bags is not restricted to this resort, its a common problem in most resorts. Your housekeeping staff is good in most resorts. Hard working bunch of people. Make them into front office folk and get these guys to work in house keeping.
  5. Please hire resort managers who like talking to people – no resort manager has met us on his/her own volition. When we complain, we get the bland “sorry about this, will fix it” and then we know its never getting fixed.
  6. Please don’t have me fill out the feedback form if you don’t want to fix anything. Its just a waste of my time.

Mr. Mahindra – you are sitting on a gold mine with the resorts and their location, but if service issues are not fixed, the gold will remain in the mine.

Do read my husband’s blog – Just a day after this amazing appreciation, I am writing this complaint filled blog :(.

So here’s the question again, are you really serious about Club Mahindra ?

p.s I sincerely hope you are because I still have fifteen years to go with my membership and hope to enjoy my holidays.


Leave a Reply