In a recent article in Sauce magazine, various locals were asked, "If the food was excellent at a restaurant, but the service terrible, would you go back?"
The following two answers caught my attention:
"I usually give it a shot one more time. Service is important, but sometimes servers have a bad day."
"I would have questions about going back, unless I really like the place. I understand that people have bad days, but service is important and I'm dissapointed if it's not good."
I spent several years working in both food service and hospitality industries, and I saw too many employees made bad first impressions because of one simple error: they forgot that the job wasn’t about them. In other words, they had a "bad day" and took it out on their guests/customers. (And trust me - I've done it before too.)
I'm not suggesting the elimination of bad days. They're bound to happen, we all have them, and we obviously sympathize for those people who are having bad days. (It's obviously tough to work effectively when you're having one.) But too often, service employees will “spill” their emotions on their customers.
This reminds me of Patricia Fripp, CSP. She is an internationally loved professional speaker who recently spoke to my NSA chapter. She told a story about a speech she once gave to 5000 people the day after both her parents died! When asked how she accomplished this feat, Fripp said, "You must work from technique - because you never know how you're going to feel that day."
The bottom line about first impressions is this: it doesn’t matter if you have a bad day. It only matters if the customer has a good day.
LET ME ASK YA THIS...
When was the last time an employee took his bad day out on you?
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Author/Speaker/That guy with the nametag
Monday, May 23, 2005