How Restaurateurs Can Deal Effectively With Upset Customers

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Angry Restaurant Customer

If
there’s one negative about finally getting all the restaurant booths
in an eatery full, it’s that there are more opportunities for
mistakes to be made. Simply increasing the frequency of patrons
coming in means more errors will occur, and if the restaurant is
really busy, careless mistakes can be made by stressed employees. In
the food and beverage industry, customers will occasionally become
upset, but fortunately, there is a surefire method restaurateurs can
use to deal with these issues.


Get
Involved
Some
business owners and managers urge their employees to handle angry
customers themselves. While this is okay up to a point, a server or
cashier simply doesn’t instill confidence that an issue will be
resolved like a manager does. Whether the complaint is over a
watered down drink or messy outdoor restaurant furniture, a manager
coming in to handle the issue lets the guest know that their concerns
have been noticed.


Really
Care About the Issue
Once
a manager or restaurateur has introduced themselves to an upset
customer, it becomes necessary to figure out what’s going on. Of
course, the guest will explain their problem, but it’s important to
actively listen and ask questions if something remains unclear.


Once
the issue at hand is obvious, the restaurateur should offer a sincere
apology. This shouldn’t be a "one-size-fits-all" apology.
It’s important to be specific about what’s being apologized for. An
apology shouldn’t come because it’s the right thing to do; apologies
should come from sincere remorse.


Correct
the Issue and Follow Up
As
soon as an apology is issued, steps should be taken to solve the
issue at hand. If their food took too long to come out, taking a
percentage off of their bill might resolve the problem. Did they
think their server was rude? Get another server to their restaurant
booth and let them know you’ll handle the issue with the initial
employee.


Whatever
the issue, there’s usually an affordable and easy way to resolve it
to the customer’s satisfaction. After this resolution has been
implemented, follow up with the guest to ensure that they’re happy
with the treatment they received. Offer additional assistance if
necessary. This definitely lets the guest know they’re valued.


Don’t
Forget About the Internet
It’s
important to remember that customer service now extends much further
than just the restaurant booth. Upset patrons can now take to social
media and potentially ruin a restaurant’s reputation. Restaurateurs
should always monitor their eatery’s social media pages, and if a
customer complains there, a solution should be reached for the entire
public to see and appreciate.

While
angry customers can create a stressful situation, it should always be
remembered that every business, from restaurants to talent agencies,
goes through these ordeals. The important thing to focus on is
handling the situation and mitigating any potential damage. In doing
so, a restaurateur can turn an angry-customer situation into a
positive experience.