Serving Gladly

chef holding white tea cup
Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on

My wife and I went to a Seafood Restaurant last night. It’s the third or fourth time we’ve been there in the past year. We love it. Great food, great atmosphere, but above all, great service.

Both last night and the last time we went we were served by the same waitress. She had a great smile, made eye contact when we were talking, and engaged us at our table. When my wife told her she appreciated her “spirit” she responded that she loved interacting with people. As I watched here move from table to table, I noticed she did this at every table. Keenly focused on them, and whoever talked she looked right at them.

Contrast this with a “pub” I went to last week in Chicago O’Hare airport. I had a lengthy layover, and hey, I’m in Chicago, and so I’m craving a hot dog and a beer. This restaurant had several hot dog choices on the menu, it was still early in the dinner hour, and so I told the waitress, “I’ll have the Chicago dog.” “We’re out of hot dogs,” she said as she looked away from me at other patrons and spoke in a monotone comatose voice. No eye contact, no engagement, and she didn’t’ seem to even care. I asked again, “you mean, you don’t have them ready right now, or you won’t have any the rest of the night?” She said, “no hot dogs today.” And that was it, she walked away. I noticed that she and most of the service staff seemed to walk at a snail’s pace; uninterested, and uncaring. Just going through the motions.

At the Seafood restaurant, when the bill came, my wife looked at me and said: “Give her a big tip!” And I did. At the Pub I gave the server a sub normal tip. But even more significant, I will not go back to that Pub again, while I will definitely revisit the Seafood restaurant.

When you serve people out of a sense of joy and gladness, your customer experiences joy and gladness. What you project, they receive.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I want to return to any place where joy and gladness was served along with their product.

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