The Customer Has a Responsibility, Too

Ok.  I have been harsh on the service thing for quite sometime, and I think it is finally time to broach this subject.  I now want to be harsh on that customer who thinks they know evertything, or at least that they think they are always right.  Or even worse yet, the customer who is absolutely clueless, and takes no responsibility at all.

Now, I am sensitive to the fact that many people don’t get to eat out much.  However, I am also aware of those places that are intolerant of customers who come in and are not familiar with that particular restaurant’s routine. (I will talk about that in future posts–this post is directed solely at the customer).

Customers need to realize that if they want to have a good time when they eat out, they need to meet the server, and the restaurant half way.  Ok, maybe a quarter of the way.  I often talk about restaurant employees who don’t pay attention.  Well, the same rules apply to the customer.

Scenario one

A couple comes in to a restaurant for dinner.  They know they need to get to a show by 8:00, so they get there at 6:00.  (Because they realize that they need to leave the joint by 7:40 so they have time to get to the show).  They mention to the server that they need to leave at a certain time, the server takes control and assures them of two things:  Having a good time, and getting them out in time  to get to their show.

Scenario two

A couple comes in to a restaurant for dinner.  They know they have to get to a show by 8:00, so they get there at 6:30, or a little after.  (This couple does not realize that they need to leave by 7:40 to get to the show on time, they are thinking that they have until 8:00–mistake number one).

They don’t mention to their server that they have to be anywhere, so the server assumes that they have plenty of time to enjoy their dinner and does not rush them.  The couple orders a couple of drinks, sits and enjoys them, still unaware that they are now in danger of being late–mistake number two.

Suddenly, they are all frantic, almost screaming at the server that they need to order.  Their food does not come out in a timely manner, they end up late for the show, and blaming a lame waiter and a slow kitchen for their plight. I think we could accurately call this mistake number three.

It’s not their fault

In this case, neither the server, nor the kitchen can be to blame for this.  The customer needs to pay attention, too.  This blog is officially now dedicated not just to service, but to the education of a dining public.  Help a restaurant out.


One Comment Add yours

  1. Cheryl D. says:

    You are so right on this one. The customer is not always right. It is also uncomfortable to be seated next to the customers that you described above, they take away from our dining experience too! It is unfortunate that people seldom think of anyone but themselves anymore. Perhaps a small statement on menu’s of dining establishments in the “downtown” areas could be included on the menus saying something like… “We are happy that you chose to dine with us this evening, if you have special dietary needs or a specific time that you must leave in order to make another appointment, etc. please be sure to tell your server. We want your dining experience to be exceptional!

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