Friday, 11 March 2016

Bad debtors - TIME TO NAME AND SHAME.

 It's time that I publicly name and shame a bad debtor - Global Focus Training Group (www.globalfocus.co.ke) and Mr Paul Kimeriah, based in Nairobi, Kenya.


I'm fed up with waiting nicely, and begging and pleading to be paid my fee for performing work for them. Delivering training is my work, my business, my livelihood, and I am owed money which is rightfully mine. So, let me tell you the details, in the hope that no-one else gets stuck in the same predicament...

Nearly a year and a half ago I went on a trip to Africa to deliver some training. I had been approached by a company who asked me to run a 3-day programme in two venues - one in Nairobi (Kenta) and then again a couple of days later in Arusha (Tanzania). I had a great time on the trip, the trainees in both venues were lovely, they all gave really positive feedback on the training, and the two guys from the company who booked me were very enthusiastic about making plans for further trips, more courses, building a PA network and running a magazine - all with my involvement. Everything seemed rosy. The agreement had been half of the fee beforehand, half on completion. They paid the two halves in relation to fee for the Nairobi course, and the first half of the fee for the Arusha course. The final portion would be paid electronically as I left Africa. Except it wasn't paid - and still hasn't been, in full.

Quite possibly I could say "more fool me" for allowing myself to be duped. However, the company had already paid the other three portions of fees electronically - and we were already planning repeat trips and more training. I saw no reason to not believe that they wouldn't pay me. The final portion of the fee, including the cost of my travel visas, came to $1300 US. When it was not paid within a month of returning to my home in the UK, I invoiced them again, now adding a 10% late fee. This brought the outstanding amount to $1430, in November 2014.

I sent repeated messages to the company during this time and afterwards, only to be continually either ignored or told that they were still awaiting some payments. So, I emailed the attendees of both of my courses - had anyone not paid yet, and if so, could they please do so? All of the responses I received were that the attendees had paid in full. I chased the company further and continued to be fobbed off with excuses or no responses at all. Eventually, around Easter 2015 I called in a firm of international debt collectors who then chased on my behalf, on and off. Finally, in December 2015 a payment of $500 was sent through to my bank. This still left almost $1k outstanding. The debt collectors said that they hoped the company would pay the remainder by February.

It's now March, and this morning I have awoken to see yet another posting from the company on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, proclaiming the successful delivery of their latest training programme, with a photo of a reasonable number of smiling attendees. (I mention 'reasonable number' as it could be claimed that a very small group might not have earned them enough money to pay me - but the photo shows enough people, I'm sure, to manage it.) Still no payment though. So I decided ENOUGH IS ENOUGH - the time has come to name and shame, and I posted comments on their Facebook page asking to be paid - and the commentswere removed almost immediately. I then posted comments on Twitter, LinkedIn and formally shared the Facebook post with all of my contacts. (Let's not forget that I'm the world's most connected PA Trainer, after all.)

The offending company is Global Focus Training Group -www.globalfocus.co.ke - my main contact there was Paul Kimeriah.

He and the company are still using my photograph (for which I have withdrawn my permission, in writing, several months ago)  on the 'About us' page of their website - http://www.globalfocus.co.ke/about-us   - and in addition to today's postings about their latest course, in the 15 months or so since I delivered the training for their attendees, their Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/globalfocus.co.ke/?pnref=story ) has shown that they have run at least 10 courses, probably more, throughout Kenya, Rwanda, UAE, etc.

And yet they still owe me $930 for delivering training which received excellent feedback from all of the attendees.
BAD FORM, GLOBAL FOCUS TRAINING GROUP AND PAUL KIMERIAH! PAY YOUR DEBTS!!

Disgruntled? Me? Oh yeah.
Please share this post. Thank you.

Angela Garry


2 comments:

  1. Feel your pain Angela. The joys of being self employed when you are not paid what is rightfully yours. Even when it has been agreed beforehand and is now well overdue!

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