I DON’T like it when people drive on my grass [i’m still cool with kids, so I guess I’m not wholly there yet] and I like my driveway leaf free.
And I’m noticing that service ain’t what it used to be.
I have begun to notice that when I go to places I have to be very clear on what I want and when I want it. If I’m not, well, I get what they want any ‘ol time they wanna give it. And I guess when I was young and poor I had all the time in the world and really, I wasn’t in a place that would lend itself to speedy service.
But times have changed some. Mostly my time has become more valuable. Literally, it’s worth more to me now. I would rather pay to not have to do a thing. [though back to my yard, I haven’t yet agreed to pay someone to handle that. Call it a hobby]
Anyway, the point is, I am much more attune to service than I used to be. And I’ve noticed that some places are better at it and others aren’t. And I wonder why.
Then I listed to this.
In this episode, Freakonomics author mentions that service is related to tolerance. That is, when people tolerate bad service, they get bad service. And when folks don’t tolerate bad service, they get better service.
It reminded me of a time I went to my local hangout; Manchesters.
I’ve been going here for years, regularly for at least 8, more like 9. AND I’ve been in the industry; I have an extremely high tolerance for service that may not be the best. Serious.
But on this night, this one waitress was just too much. I simply could not get her attention and when I did, she didn’t seem to understand that when I asked for a thing, I would like that thing at some point.
Anyway, I made my displeasure known.
I didn’t confront her, I didn’t talk to the manager and I didn’t talk to the owner; all of whom I know. What I did was reduce my tip from the normal overly generous amount to the more pedestrian 10%.
I STILL gave her money. I just gave her less.
The next time I walked into the place, the manager asked to speak to me. He wanted to know what happened and if I was upset. He asked if they could make it better or if this was a one time affair. And he totally apologized and bought my first beer.
Moral of the story?
Demand better service. You’ll get it.
Curmudgeony or not.