Have you ever walked into a shop to buy something for yourself and the shop owner treated you with disrespect? Or have you never boarded a trotro or taxi where the mate or driver picked a fight with you over the fare or other petty issues? I bet you that if we give this space out for each and everyone to share an experience; we will have dozens of them.
Be it at the market, supermarkets, street hawkers, and the list goes on and on, you are sure to find traders who display such an uncouth behaviour. Sometimes, you are tempted to ask yourself if you are doing them good by buying their items or they are rather doing you good for selling their goods to you.
It becomes incongruous when purchasing goods with your own money; you are treated like an animal by a trader who does not know either his/her left or right. There have been instances where I actually had to leave whatever I was buying and scout for a different place to make my purchases.
I once entered a shop to get for myself mosquito spray and a recharge card. I met the shop owner sitting right in front of the shop. I greeted her but she never responded (what an uncivilized attitude). I went ahead to tell her what I was buying. This woman kept quiet, sat for some few seconds, and then stood up without asking me the amount or quantity I intended to buy.
After telling her myself, she brought the items. Now, the next drama. I handed the money to her. The way this woman screamed at me, it was like the government of Ghana had passed a law not to use GH₵50 to buy anything again. Can you imagine the seller asking me the buyer to go and find change for my money and come and pay her before she would sell the items to me?
Do these traders act like that because the illiteracy level in the country is high? I do not think so because some well educated traders also operate in like manner. There are few countable traders that I have come across who are decent and treat their customers with real respect.
I am sure most of Ghanaian traders have not even heard of something called Customer Relations. This has to do with how goods and service providers relate well with their customers. If Ghanaian traders enrol and educate themselves in such courses, it would help them a lot to acquire and sustain more customers. But would they even bother?
What has some of your experiences been?