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  • Dean posted an update in the group Group logo of Customer Experience CultureCustomer Experience Culture 5 years, 10 months ago

    Sorry, originally posted in the wrong group. I’m doing a little piggybacking here but I’m thinking about it and wondering, is bad service just something that happens cause it’s such a bad job? Ray just posted about bad service when he went to eat and that got me thinking about the last time I had bad service. We had a family dinner at Yard House the other day and the people there were so slow and boring. I was thinking that maybe this is how all servers are. Maybe it was the end of their shift? Or was there a bad customer who made them angry and they’re taking it out on us? I don’t know what happened, but bad service is always one of the worst things to deal with.

    • Of course bad service is normal. Do you think you went every day of your working life in a good mood? Have you never gotten angry with someone and yelled at them? Maybe you’ve gone out and every single time the meal and everyone serving you has been delightful? I would bet every dollar I have that you can’t say yes to any of those questions. People get angry. People get upset. People aren’t always the nicest to deal with, and that’s why we have bad service. When you put someone in a low level job with nothing to do but deal with whiny customers they’re going to eventually get fed up. That means they’re either going to quit or they’re going to take it out on the customer. You were on the receiving end of it this time, that’s all.

      • Bad service isn’t normal. Service should be pretty good all the time. Yeah, sometimes I’m not the happiest person or the experience isn’t great, but I still expect for my trip to the restaurant to be good. No customer should be on the receiving end of that.

      • What you are implying, Aaron, is that bad service is a part of the restaurant experience. For all intents and purposes, it is not; restaurants strive to provide the best in terms of food and service in an attempt to attract customers. While yes, bad service may come across due to the individual actions of a customer, it is not something to be reciprocated by an entire company or business. As with a business setting, proper etiquette must be maintained by employees, and that includes treating patrons with respect and compassion. It is only when an employee is out of line that bad service occurs, and at that point it is the duty of the manager to reign in the employee and reprimand them.

    • That’s terrible Dean! 🙁 I hope that you told a manager about your experience because no business ever wants to make that sort of impression. Servers need to be all smiles and care about the people around them. 🙂 They’re there to make sure customers enjoy their visit and come back (not to mention leaving big tips!) Even if it’s a rough day they should still be nice to you. Let’s hope that they get their act together soon because they’ll lose a lot of customers if they don’t.

      • When I talk to managers they typically don’t do much. Would the manager even care about one person’s opinion?

        • Dean, while it may seem trivial to you, individual customer feedback is how a company not only builds its repertoire for serving customers, but also pinpoints bottlenecks and shortcomings of the business. Yes, it may seem as if the manager is catering to you just because you are voicing a complaint, but they are also taking a mental stock of what is not working for the company. It is difficult to manage to perfect every aspect of the business, so it is up to the employees, the patrons, and the managers to spot and report issues that may arise. Your opinion as a customer is valued by the company – never forget that.

        • Managers love to hear what customers have to say! 🙂 Satisfied customers buy more stuff, so managers want to know what will make their customers happy. Plus, who doesn’t like it when people like them back? I make some changes when I know people will like them, and I’m sure store managers do too! 😀

    • Well, it happens sometimes but it still is something that management should be trying to stop. Employees should be vigilant and diligent workers from the start of their shift to the moment they leave for the day. I know that sometimes we may want to let ourselves be governed by our emotions, but in the case of customer service worker there really is no opportunity to let any outside influences get the best of you. Servers are customer-facing and represent the restaurant they work for, so they need to put forth a warm, friendly atmosphere even if it is just a front. There are always times where the customer is overly critical or is wrong, but you cannot argue and demean the customer. When I worked for Apple I learned that if you are caring and concerned, even if you are absolutely livid on the inside, then everyone will have a better overall experience. How can you help a customer if you are still thinking about how angry or upset the last person made you feel? Bad service comes when you let these sorts of thoughts get the best of you, and sometimes it happens. Still, it is always better to try to keep that under control.

      • I guess that makes sense. People don’t realize that there’s problems going on for the employees too and that they need to power through it. You’re right that they need to be goo to everyone all the time. we expect service to be good and they’re the only ones we ever see, so they have to make their mark on us.

    • What you really need to do is carefully analyze the context of the situation before you can make any judgments. Everything is relative when you are giving your opinion, and while for you the service may have been subpar, for another it may have been fantastic. “Slow” and “boring” are such opinionated words that it is hard to claim that these sentiments are echoed by others who underwent the same experience. Possibly the restaurant was understaffed for the number of patrons, or there was a disconnect between what type of service you were expecting and what the restaurant typically offers.
      In regards to how bad service comes about, it is very difficult to pin such an effect upon a single source. As you have stated, it may be due to a less-than-savory customer that caused the negative attitude; a lack of advancement in the position may be to blame. Most common, however, is a combination of problems that finally are culminated in the expression of frustration towards a customer. It may not directly lead to the problems created by the employee, but the constant buildup of negative events may have a detrimental effect on their attitude throughout the day.

      • You’ve got a point about jumping to conclusions. I didn’t like my time at the restaurant, but maybe that’s just me. Would you say that it’s just the employee’s fault that they let their attitude get out of hand then? They were the ones who were frustrated, so they’re the ones to blame?

        • I don’t know what Stan over here thinks, but I say it’s everyone’s fault when someone loses their temper. Managers need to make sure their employees are happy and doing their job properly. Smiles people! 🙂 The employee needs to learn to keep themselves in line too since they’re the ones dealing with the customer. It’s easy to blame the customer since they’re the ones you’re seeing the most and who are throwing the fit, but can’t put it all on them. That’s not really fair, now is it? 😉

        • In regards to your question I would place a large majority of the blame on the employee for not being able to maintain the level of composure required for their task. This is not to say that management plays no role in the matter; management has to appropriately staff their restaurant and address issues in employee behavior before conflict arises. However, employees are ultimately the ones who are under scrutiny because there is only so much management can do to curb an employee’s attitude and temperament. There are certain expectations that become the burden of the employee to reach, and it is when those expectations are attainable yet unmet that the blame falls on the shoulders of the employee.