TIL today. I have 3 data sim subscriptions and a phone/data subscription with the same telco. However two of those data subscriptions (which I added last year), never show up in my admin console with the telco. Meaning I don’t have easy access to older invoices, usage stats, and most importantly the subscription settings. This was odd, as all run under my personal company’s registration. The telco, now that I asked about it, told me that because I picked up those 2 additional data sims in one of their shops, staff booked both separately as a new customer, not under my existing customer account. The reason is shop staff receive a commission for new accounts, not for existing ones. Said the guy on the phone “and then we get to sort everything out manually on the back-end to match all those records up again”. It took him a few minutes to fix, and may take a few days to propagate through their systems. It also took extra time from me when I bought those data bundles, as it meant more steps (like proving the company is mine, id verification etc.). Commissions, in short, are a perverse impulse causing inefficiency and friction for both the customer and the telco.

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  1. I was chatting with a friend last night about financial planners who work on commission (most of them), and how, as a result, they will never recommend “not investing” as an option. It’s frustrating. I wish there was a way to seek financial planning advice from someone who was as motivated *against* the very idea of investing, if only to hear the other side of the story.

    • Commission for financial planners and insurance advice has been illegal since 2013 here in Netherlands. It means I get an invoice from my financial planner, regardless of what is being adviced. A marked improvement, but for a lot of people it makes the actual cost of that advice visible for the first time (normally it is absorbed into the monthly insurance fee or investment costs), and experience it as a rise in costs because of it.

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