Great Expectations (of Service)

Posted by Frank van Schie on September 04, 2008
Story / No Comments

A Brazilian guy came to work with my company in the Netherlands. For a personal project, he needed an electronics part, a transformer. So he searched around Rotterdam for an electronics store, and found one.

"Sure," they said, "our branch in the Limburg, in the south of the country, has it. We'll have it shipped here, and it'll be here next week."

This was, in his view, terrible service. "After all," he reasoned, "How long could it possibly take to ride there and back again by motorcycle?!".

Minimum wage, as of 2008/2009 in Brazil is around €163 per month. In the Netherlands it's €1160. Sending a cheap Dutch courier would most likely have doubled his transformer in price, while in Brazil it would have made hardly a dent in the price.