What service should be like.

If you are on my Facebook, you will know that I have been having some issues with my S3 and with the service that Samsung has provided. The entire saga occurred over a period of 2 weeks and you can read most of it here.

I tried to asked for a 1-for-1 exchange (my power button was dying too) but in the end, I thought I should just end everyone’s misery and agree to try for a motherboard exchange (which was what everyone suggested on Facebook and what I initially wanted). On Wednesday evening, I agreed to go down to Samsung Service Centre again. And I am very glad that I chose to head to the one at Marina Square instead of PS.

Greeted like a friend.

I had a few hours to spare on Thursday so I headed down to Marina Square. The service centre was a little hard to find but I remembered that it was near Pan Pacific so I just kept walking in that direction (:

I confessed that I was a little irritated that the CSO at the counter told me that the guy I was supposed to look for (Jonathan) was on leave. However, he was quite “seng mok” and quickly paged for his manager (?). Even though the manager also didn’t know anything about my case, he ushered me in and sat me down at a service counter.

Was seated at the counter, ready to shoot another irritated message to my friends when Ray (think he might be equivalent to a Cluster Manager in banking terms) came of  over and greeted me BY NAME *thumbs up* He told me to take a seat and he will attend to me shortly. Okay. You may ask what’s the big deal about being greeted by name? Well, it reassured me that someone knows what I am here for and I didn’t have to repeat the entire grandmother’s story again.

Knew the entire story

When Ray came over, the first thing he did was to apologise for my unpleasant experience and empathised with me. I confess (again) that I really wanted to be difficult but the way Ray approached my situation softened me up.

Next, he told me what he will be doing to help “rescue” my dying S3. Changed my motherboard, perform stress test, highest priority, provide me a loan phone. He provided me the options of doing an express service (2-3 hours) or a normal service (2-3 days), weigh the pros and cons of each option. FINALLY! Someone who knows what to do!

Eventually, I decided on doing a normal service as I really want to resolve my issues properly. Rather take the slow way and do a proper job, if you know what I mean.

Ray also printed my previous blogpost which impressed (and embarrassed) me. Impressed cos he did his homework! Embarrassed cos I was rather gibberish in that post. Haha.

Passing it on to his staff

After we have reached a “collective” decision, Ray turned around and told his staff (Wei Ting?) what to do. Take my phone in, repair to be given highest priority, loan phone to be given and approved by him. All the words that was said further reassured me that THIS COULD BE IT! MY S3 CAN BE RESCUED!!!

After giving the necessary instructions, Ray apologised that he had to leave but told Wei Ting to give me his handphone number later *thumbs up again* He is taking ownership!

Wei Ting was extremely detailed and conscientious! She checked my phone carefully and explained every step to me. My S3 has some cracks at the side (no idea why. didn’t even drop it but wear and tear is unavoidable). So Wei Ting took a paper, explained that there’s some cosmetic damage and that she will have to record it down. I thought that was good! Previously at PS, S3 was just taken in without any recording of these cracks. I could have tried to be extremely nasty and accused them of damaging my S3.

After that, Wei Ting went to fetch the loan phone. This is super frivolous but was quite happy that the loan phone is WHITE instead of black 😛 What impressed me was that this time, the loan phone came with the micro-SIM adapter! I didn’t have to use mine. And Wei Ting was nice enough to help me set up the phone *thumbs up*

Followed up call

On the same day, Ray called me after his interviews ended and apologised for not being able to “stay”. He explained about the warranty of my S3 again and he said if there’s any problem, I can approach him. He also asked if I needed my phone back urgently.

Quite a nice gesture really.

Collecting the S3

This morning around 11am, I received a call telling me that S3 was ready! Whheeee! But being the suspicious person that I am, I questioned the person who called and texted Ray to double/triple confirm. Heh.

I went home to collect my battery and went to the service centre eagerly this evening with Pig and Victor. Ray called when I was on my way there. He explained that he was on leave but he will get another colleague, Jonathan, to help me.

Felt bad that Ray had to ‘work’ even on his off day! But that further impressed me!

Nothing outstanding happened during the collection, normal normal.

Thank you, Ray and team!

Been using S3 for the past 8 hours and it seems to be okay *fingers crossed* Going to gradually increase the number of apps back to my original number (minus some games).

Ray also text me to ask me the phone was okay. So nice!

Anyway, like my friend said. This is what service is about! Knowing your customers’ need, listening, empathising and being upfront.  I don’t expect all frontliners to know everything. If they don’t know, they can just say they don’t but they will check and get back to me. Don’t create smokescreens, please. Consumers are much smarter these days.

Because of the awesome service received, my faith in Samsung recovered a little bit more! Once S3 starts returning to normal, the faith should be back.

Once again, thank you, Ray and team (: You guys managed to rescue one customer!

Edited on 11/4

Yesterday, I texted Ray about a tiny issue – my battery and clock was permanently stuck at 55% and 9.29am. His reply was rather fast! Managed to resolved my issue on my own (Twitter rocks!) without having to go down. But yup. Ray was true to his words. If I have a problem, he will gladly help me.

Also, would like to give a small mention to Jeremy Lim from the Contact Centre. Throughout the entire saga, he gave me pretty regular updates. So thanks!

Korean Classes in Singapore (:

I have been asked this quite a bit so I thought maybe I should write a post on the topic (:

My learning journey:

I started out with NUS Extension, completed all levels for Beginners and took a break for a year.

Am currently with Ganada Korean Language Centre (cousin introduced it to me).
Taking my Intermediate classes and TOPIK preparation classes there now.

NUS Extension
Kyunghee University

I got a really strong foundation in reading and recognising words here. You get a textbook, a workbook + worksheets (depending on your teacher). There are 2 sets of books for the beginner levels and it takes about 3 levels to complete one set of books.

The pace in NUS Extension is really fast cos the teachers have to complete a lot of things within the 8-10 lessons. Classes are big (at least 7-10 to start a new one) so the amount of attention you get might not be enough. For a really structured learning experience, I would recommend this.

Textbook-wise…It can be a little dry and confusing. You will learn both formal and informal language at the same time. Sometimes a super formal language will pop in too. The vocabulary and grammar is somewhat unrelated too. Found it quite hard to relate or memorise. After the first few chapters, the textbook will be entirely in Korean which can be overwhelming for beginners. I had to translate the entire page before I knew what I was supposed to do for homework last time.

Teachers there are Koreans (I know this is important to some of you).

Introduction to the Korean structure is built into the curriculum. So I was introduced to Korean food and traditional games.

Score: 6/10
Seems like NUS Extension has recently made an announcement that they are closing their language courses. The teachers have now opened a new school called, “i.Speak KLC” that uses Active Korean textbook as well (:

Ganada Korean Language Centre
Seoul University

I took a placement test when I joined the class.  I think I did quite badly for the placement test 😛 But the principal was rather nice and insisted that I continued with Intermediate instead of starting with Beginner Level 4 (which I wanted).

Learning is fun at Ganada! Each level completes about 4-5 chapters of the Seoul University textbook. The pace is slower and more reasonable (:

Classes at Ganada is a lot smaller (at least 5 to start a class) and more personable. The teachers are Koreans who has a strong command of English. Some even know a bit of Chinese (which can help!).

Textbook-wise…I really like the textbook! It’s very well structured. You start learning the informal form first (much easier!) before gradually proceeding to the formal and even Banmal! The textbook is well-organised too. Chapters are grouped by activities (e.g. interview, out of order, shopping) and you learn the vocabulary/grammar related to these activities. There’s English translation for most of the content which is awesome! I will usually read the words in Korean and try to see if my understanding was correct.

I saw the principal cutting out some Korean money and bringing out the Seoul Subway map once. Think those are for the beginner classes. Interesting!

My teacher is awesome. She makes learning less stressful and I am slightly more okay with making mistakes when I am with her. So I try to speak more (:

Score: 8/10

Korean Lanaguage School
Yonsei (I think, but there are reviews that say it uses Kyunghee too)

I did consider going to the “official” Korean language school but it was too far!

My colleague is currently having her classes there and I think she quite like it (: Classes are semester based. So if you missed one intake, you will have to patiently wait for the next semester to roll by.

I have some classmates who were from KLS previously. They speak really fluent Korean and their foundation seems rather strong. However, I overheard that the textbook was crap cos the structure is bad.

Also understand that classes are conducted 90% in Korean. So you either buck up and catch up or get lost in translation.

The school organises several Korean activities too. And is the place administering the TOPIK exam.

Score: N.A.

Would recommend it if you like to be plunged into the deep end to learn. I’m not 😛

Talk to Me in Korean

This was where I started before even heading to NUS Extension. The lessons are really interactive and fun (:

So if you want to “stress test” your interest in the Korean Language, you can go to the site and listen to their lessons. They are FREE! But you can also choose to buy the lessons in bulk.

They have video lessons that touch on common drama phrases, the latest lingo and stuff. Really fun! (:

So that’s it from me! Hope this helps. Otherwise, do drop me a note!