Saying It Like I See It

The other day on social media I called out a local business on shoddy service.  A "friend" called me out for bashing a local business.  As I see it, I wasn't bashing a local business, I was publicly sharing my opinion on a bad business practice. 

Now I DO realize that I write about bad customer service.  I write about it more than I'd like.  Not because I LIKE ranting or being angry, but because it seems like good customer service is hard to find.  When I do find it, I try to share that as well.  (For example:  

Saturday night was a total mess when it came to dinner.  My son and his girlfriend were going out to dinner and I was the designated driver.  No problem.  Hubby and I decide to order out and we are told food will be ready for pick up a good 40 minutes prior to when I would have to drive them.  Seemed easy enough, except when we went down to pick up the food, it wasn't ready.  It was in the oven and would be out in 5 minutes.  Twenty five minutes later hubby was still waiting inside the establishment (along with a lot of other unhappy people he tells me) and I have to head back home to pick up the teens and get them to their destination.  It didn't take long, and I tried to call and text my husband to see what was going on, but he didn't answer.  By the time I was able to track him, he had already made it home. (We are less than a block away from the restaurant, as the crow flies.  Unfortunately, due to gates that have been installed on a passage that was once right away, the less than a block now 1/4 mile.) He was hot and angry.  I was hot and angry.  The food was only lukewarm.  It was not good. 

We should have never have ordered from this place.  We'd had a bad experience less than a year ago with this establishment.  As a thank you gift, friends had ordered us dinner and scheduled it to be delivered at a set time to our home. That time came and went.  An hour went by.  I had to call my friend and ask her if she knew anything.  (That was embarrassing) SHE had to call the restaurant.  First the delivery person was supposedly just leaving.  Then the delivery person couldn't find our house!  We got our food, over an hour and a half AFTER it was supposed to arrive.  

So why did I order again from this same place?  Well I thought they just had bad delivery service.  (Actually I thought they shouldn't offer delivery at all...I'm not sure they do anymore.)  That's why we went to pick up.  We have had to wait before for 10 or so minutes after the food was supposed to be ready, but this time was really inexcusable.  (And to my "friend;" just because they are a local business doesn't mean they should get a pass!  Additionally, I realize that it was a weekend, but that's no excuse.  I can be more flexible and understanding during busy times for a business, but there is only so far I can go.  After all, my son and his girlfriend went out to eat and had no problems and that restaurant was also pretty busy. Hmm…maybe I should have ordered from them?  We could have picked up AND dropped off and everyone would have been happy?)

But what I really want to say is that this COULD have been avoided.  This COULD have been a great review IF when my husband walked in they said: "Look we're having a horrible night and everything is backed up.  Your order won't be ready for at least another 30 minutes.  If you'd like to cancel it, we'd understand, but we hope you'll give us a chance and come back in 35-40 minutes."  Owning up would have made all the difference in the world.  Being HONEST would have been the better option.

We all screw up.  God knows I have plenty of time.  One of the things I am proud of is that when I screw up, I own and apologize.  It's something I've tried to teach our son as well.  (And I think we've been pretty successful.)  We all make mistakes; own up to it and apologize when you do.  That's what makes good customer service. That’s what makes us good human beings.

So I've learned my lesson...This place may be on the map as one of the best pizza joint around, but this last experience proved to be terminal for me.  There is one thing we don't lack in our area and that's restaurants (particularly those that serve pizza).  We will find one that suits our needs.  As I said a few paragraphs ago, maybe I should be trying the restaurant that my son likes so much. 

Good customer service and honesty; it's what we are all looking for. I don't want to rant; I want to rave.   I'm hoping I'll have some examples to share soon.  And if you do, let me know.  


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