Manish, a young boy with passion for food, has been a regular at our office. Five years ago, he left his village and came to Bangalore looking for an opportunity to earn his living.
While talking to him at length, I discovered that he had always wanted to start his own kitchen and deliver home cooked north Indian food to busy professionals. When I told him that there are so many already in the market, he said, “There is always place for more”. For the past five years, he has got his hands dirty in all the aspects of the business. He started off cleaning vessels and is now a manager in its truest sense.
Six months later, I met Manish at my new workplace. He now runs his own kitchen, delivers food and does not accept cash. On asking him the story behind the cash ban, he explains, “Sir, everyone has a phone and everyone is ordering food online. I discovered people are more happy not doing cash payment. So, I will not accept cash.” I knew he had a keen sense of observation and asked him what else he is doing differently, to which he replied, “I still think people are happy knowing who is in-charge of their food. So I will meet every new customer and once a month I will meet all my customers asking them for feedback.”
Manish went on to explain the journey to not accepting cash – it had been in his family DNA for generations. ” I have been delivering food to many companies in the past few years and know many customers in person. One customer suggested that I collect payments online. He even told me that I can do online transactions by mobile only, I didn’t require other gadgets. But I had no clue how to do it.
On asking for his guidance, he asked me to get a mobile phone. I got a second hand phone from another Sir and went back to him. He installed Instamojo and asked me for my bank account details. On completing, he taught me how to ask for money by entering customers’ mobile phone number only. He explained the entire process by showing me the SMS and the simple payment process. He also explained that I will get an SMS once customer makes a payment which is very convenient. Then I got confidence that this works.
I started using this with a few customers that I knew in person and they were all happy. So now I use it for all customers. The biggest problem solved is I can keep accounts with me and there is no issue of change and giving credit.”
And from the maker’s perspective, it is that one feature – “Request a Payment” that can change the life of many users.