Improved Revenue Generation Requires Holistic Approach- Ande Daniel, Service Centre Supervisor
AD: My name is Ande Daniel from Taraba state. I attended Mayfair Nursery and Primary school Kakuri. Thereafter, Elite Comprehensive High School. I studied sociology at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. I currently hold the position of Service Center Supervisor at Gwari Service Centre, Makera Area Office.
CCD: Tell us what it is like supervising a Service Centre.
AD: Managing a service center is a challenging task. This is because everything and everyone in the Service Centre is under your supervision and you are responsible for them all. For instance, if you have five sales representatives and each of them has five hundred customers, as a supervisor, it means you have a total of two thousand five hundred customers, not forgetting the engineering staff, cashiers, and security guards. Every responsibility and duty becomes your responsibility. You are responsible for everything that goes on, so one has to be on ones toes to make sure everything is done effectively and efficiently.
CCD: What do you consider as the most challenging part of supervising people and managing customers?
AD: One thing I find most challenging in supervising people is their different behavioral patterns. Sometimes, when you give out an instruction the feedback may be positive and sometimes negative. The most important thing is to understand different behavioral patterns and manage them effectively in order to achieve your set goals.
In customer management, one of the most challenging aspects of it is that customers have individual behaviors and group behaviors. It is easier to manage individual behavior than group behavior. In managing groups, you must identify the leader of the group for the problem to be solved.
CCD: What is your total customer population and also their classification tariff?
AD: Our total customer population is one thousand five hundred and two. In which 80% are under C1 and R2 tariff classifications and the other 20% are D1 and A1 tariff classifications.
CCD: One of the toughest challenges facing the company is poor collection; what is your strategy in addressing it?
AD: For the company to achieve improved collection, it requires a holistic approach which, involves proper tariff classification, reducing energy theft, proper billing of customers especially that which addresses under-billing.
Others include: working on the relationship between the company and its customers, effective handling of customer complaints, educating the customers in order to get their understanding on how their actions may affect the sustainability of the electricity industry.
CCD: What are you doing in terms of relationship management with staff and customers?
AD: As a supervisor I always organize interactive sessions with my marketers twice a week to know their challenges and provide solutions. I also encourage them to strive to succeed whenever they are out doing their fieldwork.
I also join them on the field to provide support and let them know that we are all in this together. While in customer relationship management relationships, I make effort to understand them to enable me manage them effectively.
I treat them as friends while bearing in mind the goal of the relationship is to persuade them in paying their bills and on time, to make them comfortable enough to table their complaints and build trust. The Customer is king and we need them to run the business together.
CCD: What do you think management should do to encourage staff career growth?
AD: The Company's growth is dependent on the quality of training its staff members receive. The company should channel its resources in developing the technical knowhow of staff members for improved productivity.
CCD: What will you consider your major achievement since you assumed duty as a Supervisor?
AD: Before assumption of duty as the Service Center Supervisor, the collection used to be below five million naira monthly but I and my team have been able to raise collection above five million and are working towards raising it even higher to meet company's standard.
CCD: Any appeal or suggestion to staff or management?
AD: Staff members should maintain integrity; a good name is better than riches and anything worth doing is worth doing well. To the management, invest in your staff members, as Richard Branson says, "take care of your employees and they will take care of your business''.