O.K. so it was yet another lovely Sunday evening, the 26th of October 2014, out with my best one. It was fun because, it was an evening. It was fun because, it was a Sunday. The whole day was spent with a lot of things being done here and there, and by evening, it was time to make ourselves happy. Now what’s the best way to make yourself happy? Well, it is – Fooooooood! Yeah, let’s be honest. If food cannot make you happy, then nothing else can – Unless and until, you hate food and survive on water and oxygen 😀 Did you say water is also a kind of food? O.K. any doctors out there?
Bad joke – One, Two and the third slap on my left cheek (Right cheek reserved for later, you’ll know it as you read on).
So after deciding where to eat, and when to eat, we figured out that the best thing to do, was to head out to Dominos Pizza – One of the best Pizza restaurants that I have come across – Serving some really delicious pizzas all day long. Yeah, sometimes in the late nights too – I remember ordering a Pizza post 11 in the night!
O.K. back to the main story now – So we headed out to the Electronics City, Phase 1, Bengaluru Dominos Pizza. Yeah, the one near the toll; and on the road next to the SBI Bank (which is always filled with people, no matter at what time of the day you go!). So we headed out to the Pizza outlet. It was partially filled, thanks to our luck. The outlet is very clean and bright – Feels good inside and it’s filled with the smell of pizza, making your mouth literally watering. We started taking a look at the menu. A lot of new items had been added and the menu had expanded. A bunch of new pizzas were now hitting our eyes. Nevertheless, we decided to stick to the delicious and really spicy ‘Spicy Triple Tango Veg. Pizza’ (which we are having since the last 2 weeks) but this time, we decided to go for the Wheat crust – This is the first time that we were trying a Wheat crust, much different than the normal Pizza base that we always had.
So we ordered Spicy Triple Tango and along with that, we ordered a Stuffed Garlic bed – Yes, stuffed. I’ll tell you guys later why I am stressing on the “stuffed” word. So we ordered for it and at the time of paying, the executive at the counter said – “There is a 10% Corporate discount today Sir” – Woah! That’s a nice news! I was happy but surprised. I asked him, why? He repeated the same sentence again. May be he was thinking, “Aaaggghhhh! Why does he need to know the reason for the discount? Just take it and go!”. Well, I was still persistent to know why and the guy finally asked, “Why Sir, you don’t want the discount?” O.K. no more getting embarrassed. I said “Cool, thanks”.
That’s when I realized that you should not know the reason for the discount. When someone offers you a discount, just take it! Just take it and go!
So the Pizza cost was Rs.335.00 and the “Stuffed” garlic bread was 110.00 – Now add 10% “Corporate” discount ONLY for the Pizza! Why? I don’t know – And I don’t need to know – Discounts are meant to be accepted without asking any questions! O.K. so Rs.335 – 10% = Rs.33.50 discount. So the total was Rs.411.50. Hey wait, I forgot to add Rs.20.34 Service tax and Rs.59.67 VAT – So the total was Rs.491.51 and it was rounded off to Rs.492 (O.K. I will still pay Rs.0.49 paise “just like that” because I am rich!). So we paid Rs.492 and sat at he table on the first floor. We spent chatting for close to 15 minutes and I was startled to hear “Sanjay” being called out. I was like, “I am here! I am here” – I started waiving my hand like a traffic police (bad joke) and the guy kept it on the table. He smiled – Good! (May be he had a Masters in Customer Management from Dominos University). I smiled back and asked him for a bottle of tomato sauce. He stopped smiling (may be because he had to do a bit of work now) and promptly got back after 2 minutes (2 minutes is a long time when you have a hot pizza in front of you) and and kept it on the table. O.K. so time to eat!
The Pizza was good with lots of vegetables. Th Wheat pizza feels a lot different. It is a very thin crust and actually does not feel like the “real” pizza. The taste was however good though the pizza feel was missing. I thought, I should have ordered the usual pizza base, and not the wheat base. In the meanwhile, we realized that the stuffed garlic bread is just there to be eaten. It looked very delicious and for the fact that we did not like the wheat pizza, we were eager to open the garlic bread box and start munching it. So I took one and had a bite. Very tasty but something was no right – It felt a lot empty. That’s when I realized, it really wasn’t stuffed. All I could see was a single corn with a hint of cheese – Nothing else!
Well, let’s say that they knew the six sigma concept (did you say nine sigma?) and this could probably be the only stuffed garlic bread pieces that weren’t stuffed out of all the remaining stuffed garlic bread pieces that were prepared that day. Agreed.
So to do the reality check, I took the second garlic bread piece and took a bite. Woah! I again found just 2 (I am good at Maths) pieces of corn inside and a very little cheese. Forget the cheese – But does stuffed garlic bread means that it comes with 1 – 2 pieces of corn? Common! Now believing that Dominos hires the most customer-centric (reminds me of Amazon.com) people to work at their outlets, I called the executive and showed him the garlic bread. The executive seemed to be concerned and asked me, “Should we replace it?” I said, “Well yes, it would be good if you could do so, as the garlic breads isn’t stuffed. I paid for “Stuffed” garlic bread, and not the plain one”. The executive said that he needs to take the permission from the manager and he went inside.
1 minute …. 2 minutes …. 4 minutes ….. 7 minutes … 10 minutes …. 12 minutes …. 15 minutes …. 18 minutes …. 20 minutes ……Where is our garlic bread? We were sitting their waiting for someone to let us know something. I would have been happy had the executive told me that their manager did not “approve” but not letting you know anything is simply unacceptable. Leaving our ego behind, we did wait patiently for 20 minutes and when we got to know that their manager had probably not “approved” for the fact that we had paid it, and yet they didn’t want to replace it, we decided to leave (yeah, gracefully!).
We got up from our seats and walked down slowly, looking at the executive(s) and the “manager” (I believe he was the one). They were happy to look at us as well, giving us a look of “Ha Ha! Get out from here! You won’t get your stuffed garlic bread. We scammed you !!” We were a little unhappy for the fact that our wheat pizza wasn’t as good as expected, and the stuffed garlic bread wasn’t really stuffed – O.K. let’s be fair – The wheat based pizza was our choice and if it wasn’t good, we take the blame (Now I slap my right cheek three times). The stuffed garlic bread however should have been stuffed, for the fact that we did buy the stuffed one.
I am not surprised if the garlic bread isn’t stuffed. I agree that errors do happen. So when I showed them that the garlic bread isn’t stuffed, they should have replaced it. Or at least, told me that they cannot, and that they had decided to scam us on that evening. I appreciate the truth being said out loud, rather than making us wait like “beggars” even after paying for it.
O.K. wait – So this makes me wonder, why did they give me the 10% discount? Probably to save it on that, did they give me “just” the garlic bread and not the stuffed one?
I don’t know. I will probably never know as well. But this experience wasn’t really good. This is the first time that I had such an experience at Dominos. I would not blame the company, and not the executives either – Probably they are just not trained on how to retain customers who have had been buying pizzas from them since years. I am sure Dominos is aware of the fact that they ae surrounded by Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, U.S. Pizza and many more.
Here’s the invoice –
Invoice No: 100
Time: 6:49 PM
Server: Rupan Das D
Address: Shop No.6-7, 2nd cross, Survey 14, Electronics City, Phase 1, Bangalore
Every businesses know that it’s not about getting new customers; it’s all about retaining the existing ones. One such incident can probably make me look out for alternatives. Hopefully, they understand this soon before it’s too late and they find me relishing a Pizza at their nearest competitors’ outlet!
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