Even if a restaurateur puts all of their time and effort into creating
great guest experiences, a single, simple mistake can ensure that a particular
patron will never again occupy the restaurant furniture in that
establishment. These mistakes can be
simple miscalculations or the result of a busy night, but they can all be
seriously detrimental. The following are
some of the biggest "oops" moments that could occur at a restaurant,
and they should be avoided at all costs.
Staff Breaks Near Customers
Anyone who has worked in the restaurant industry knows that breaks are
the point where servers and other workers can wind down and vent about their
day. Because of this, conversation can
often take place that we wouldn’t want customers to hear. With this in mind, it’s important to have
clear boundaries about where employees can take their breaks. This minimizes the chances that patrons will
be bothered by discontented workers.
Not Offering Substitutions
Getting the restaurant full of patrons isn’t the end of the
battle, and some simple things, such as not offering substitutions, can result
in a less-than-satisfying experience. There will obviously be times when certain substitutions cannot be made,
but every effort should go into allowing these switches when possible. Since patrons will know the restaurant is
going out of its way, this can also help with word-of-mouth marketing.
Even great ambiance and the most comfortable restaurant dining
furniture cannot make up for an inattentive employee. If patrons wanted to be just another face in
the crowd, they’d go get fast food. When
an employee tries to avoid contact, doesn’t cater to the patrons’ needs, or
acts as if it’s a hassle to do their job, it creates a hostile atmosphere that
most would rather avoid. Do not allow
these instances to go unmanaged. Because
in the end, it’s better to lose one bad employee than several great guests.
Not Being Transparent
Hectic and bad days are going to happen occasionally. Whether it’s because the new restaurant
furniture showed up three hours early or simply thanks to a tour bus rolling in
twenty minutes before closing, the fact of the matter is that these days will
eventually rear their ugly heads. The
worst thing a restaurateur and employees can do on these occasions, though, is
not be transparent.
Customers will understand that things come up. They will not understand, however, why their
food took 45 minutes and no one ever came to explain what was going on. If there’s an issue that’s going to affect a
patron’s experience, make sure to be upfront about it. This can make the difference between a guest
granting forgiveness, and one screaming their disgust from every review site
that will let them.
Restaurateurs have a lot on their plates when it comes to running
successful establishments, so it’s no wonder that these mistakes can sometimes
slip through the cracks. Sadly, they
often realize too late how important avoiding these common errors is. If proactive measures aren’t taken to avoid
these slip-ups, the best-case scenario is that the mistake only results in
minimal revenue loss.