There’s this thing about living in a formerly Soviet State, and that thing is:
lack of customer service.
I get how this started. Really, I do. Way back in the days of Lenin, shops are owned by the state. Things like profits, supply and demand, distribution of goods and competition are just terms you may (not) have heard about in some economics class. If you work all day, go as fast as you can, listen to requests and problems, it doesn’t mean smack. In fact, if you smile at the people coming in to buy stuff you might be acting a little too capitalistic and fall under suspicion.
So, instead, you might take a couple smoke breaks while people wait around, and if you’re a service provider you might wait a couple of days/weeks to get around to whatever it is your “customer” wants. Because, really, it doesn’t help you at all to do anything more efficiently- you’re getting paid anyway.
So yes, I, being culturally sensitive and respectful, etc. understand the history behind the practice.
What I just DON’T FRIKKEN GET is why this isn’t, well, HISTORY. Because yes, back in the USSR there was no gain to be had from doing your job today instead of next week.
BUT WE ARE NO LONGER IN THE USSR.
I took PSYCH 101. I read all about Pavlov and his hungry dogs. I know how this should work.
You own a shop. You have customers, to whom you provide services.
- If service is good, and the customers are pleased, they come again. You earn more money. You survive.
- If service is poor, customers go to one of the other shops selling the exact same products and you don’t earn money. You starve.
According to Pavvy, you should be conditioned to provide good service. You shouldn’t even have to try.
BUT SOMEHOW UKRAINE IS COMPLETELY IMMUNE TO CLASSICAL CONDITIONING.
Somehow, instead of the customers -->service -->continued customers -->survival, you get:
Customer --> a month of waiting --> angry customer --> more waiting (and maybe breaks for coffee) --> irate customer-->no customer--> “whateva!”
This, my friends, is the magical collective memory of communism. THE ABILITY TO COMPLETELY IGNORE BOTH BASIC PSYCHOLOGY AND THE SURVIVAL INSTINCT. YES. And I just don't get it.