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How NOT to run a business


LordThornber

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Delivering flowers yesterday and 2 recipients happened to be restaurants. I approached the first one and entered, a lady was present and I asked in a light hearted way if there was a power cut, it was dark.

 

The Lady said no, I said I had a delivery for **** and she just pointed to this pitch black staircase. I said that it was rather dark and she invited me to the lights on. Yes, the lights in her premises.

 

She snatched the board from me and signed for the flowers after she said she'd take them.

 

Now I fully appreciate these situations don't fully translate onto a forum, sometimes you really do "have to be there".

 

But do these people think we won't pass on our experiences?

 

The second one refused to take an item which was destined for one of his customers who was dining later. It was a surprise gift from her other half, he said we'd have to deliver it when the restaurant was open, even though I was speaking to him on the phone at the premises!

 

Two places I won't be recommending 8-)

 

Martyn

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LordThornber - 2014-11-12 7:28 PM (in another thread)

 

Good for you Joe, definitely a man after my heart. I couldn't agree more, complain, whinge, moan you name it, if it gets you the end result you desire - good on you mate.

 

After all, you are the customer. No customer = no business.

 

Martyn

 

We had a van delivery this morning. The driver's opening words were to complain about the time he had had to take crossing our busy road to get to us. The delivery was supposed to have take place over a week earlier but the driver couldn't find us (so he said) and when I rang the depot to chase the delivery up it turned out he "didn't follow procedures" because otherwise the depot would have contacted us to rearrange. Anyway the lady at the depot was friendly and helpful and said she would make sure we got our parcel, which she did.

 

Did it occur to Your Lordship that the restaurant owner who told you to come back when the restaurant was open was probably taking a diverted call, as he grabbed the opportunity to nip down to the Cash 'n Carry or was at home on a break between split lunchtime and evening shifts? And when you made your comments about the lights at the other place the lady might have thought you were sounding off in a grumpy or a demanding way and didn't deserve help, and that she took the parcel herself eventually just to get rid of you? Why should she waste her time talking to an arrogant plonker who thinks he is being funny?

 

The sort of person who is inclined to insensitivity and thinks that he's always right can easily miss subtle clues like these.

 

Customer service only applies when you are on the receiving end does it?

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The point of my post Stuart wasn't about customer service, it was about the potential to damage a business.

 

Without wishing to labour it a tad, I did say these issues don't transfer too well, hence the "had to be there" bit.

 

I'm not the customer in either of my scenarios - merely someone going about my business, but going about it in a manner which hopefully reflects well on my business.

 

So if I'm asked to comment about either restaurant, my experiences were negative and wouldn't speak positively based on what I found.

 

Martyn

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I missed your mention of the fact that one owner was on the premises (presumably you knew that somehow) so my point about the diverted call would be invalid, but I nevertheless think you should take the criticism about dual standards on the chin.

 

You went to these places as a delivery driver and you launched yourself into adverse comment (even if you did think your were being light hearted) about the gloomy premises and you clealry had expectations of both of these customers (as they should have been from your viewpoint) failed to meet your expectations of how they should deal with you. That in stark contrast with the attitude you display toward people who serve you as a customer, to whom you've said you feel entitled to behave as angrily and unpleasantly as you wish in order to get your own way.

 

That's not my way of dealing with people at all, whether as a customer or a supplier.

 

And while you haven't eaten at either restaurant either, you suggest that your experience of the owners as customers of yours was enough for us all to avoid doing so. I don't buy that at all. The way you told us about the encounter suggests that it is entirely possible that they were behaving reasonably and that you weren't.

 

There is nothing in your post to suggest that these two restaurant owners are running their businesses badly at all. Even if you are correct about them receiving a delivery from you in an imperfect way it doesn't follow that they are bad at running their businesses, does it? They are still in business which after a few years of difficult times for restaurants, suggests they aren't doing badly at all.

 

It seems to be a matter of fact that they are running (and may be owners of) businesses and you are not. You are a delivery driver and are presumably employed to do that and don't own either a delivery or a florists business. Maybe the two restaurant owners don't care whether peopl with attitudes like yours ever come to them as a customers. Perhaps they would rather you didn't.

 

Sorry if i've made a bit of a meal of having a go at you but maybe on this occassion you deserve it.

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I think Martyn's post sums up nicely what an angry, unhappy, rude, arrogant and selfish nation we are becoming and how this sort of bad attitude is becoming more and more prevalent.

 

When I get good service I heap praise and thanks but so also do I point out the shortcomings to those with a severe attitude problem and I make it very clear that the bad publicity will cost them lost business in the longer term which sometimes elicits a better response but sadly often not.

 

Since living in Evesham we have found the standards of workmanship, tidiness and attitude much worse when compared to our experiences with similar trades in Norfolk and even worse is that these people see no wrong in their slap dash work often lacking the attention to detail that makes an average job a great job.

 

Having a go at Martyn for sharing his experience is uncalled for and suggests a certain attitude problem in itself?

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This aggressive attitude has been developing since the 1920's when life was controlled by the moneyed people, it was customary then to doff one's hat and assume that those with a few shillings new best. The British also believed in fair play during competitions. It was rather one-sided but it worked.

 

Then, partly due to WWII, winning at all costs became uppermost in British society and to achieve this people had to become aggressive ... at sport and unfortunately ... this progressed into everyday life. We now have increased commercialisation which is leading towards it being fashionable to speak gruffly to anyone regardless of the situation.

 

On top of this apparent personal aggression are various forums where some take their aggression further by hiding behind false names.

 

The facts are that those who adopt such practices are weak, hence their inability to make a more polite answer to a simple comment.

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I think some people are rude out of ignorance or selfishness, little while ago at a large supermarket garage my mate waited for 15 minutes for the car in front to move so he could get to the pump.A woman was sat in the passenger seat the whole time and a bit of a queue had formed,he was furious to see the guy walk up to the car with a McDonald's from the place next to the garage!
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Tracker - 2014-11-13 4:06 PM

 

...Having a go at Martyn for sharing his experience is uncalled for and suggests a certain attitude problem in itself?

 

I think you are mssing the point Tracker. On the one hand (in another thread but quoted above) Martyn was advocating making a noisy fuss as a customer anytime he feels like it, to get his way - but he also wants his customers, when he is working as a delivery driver, to be nice and cooperative.

 

Not unreasonable to point out the inconsitency in his expectations is it?

 

If you want people to be friendly and helpful (eg by taking someone else's delivery for you) you don't start off by criticising their gloomy lighting do you? And it seems I'm not the only one who doesn't lower myself by continuing to whinge and moan as a customer, just to get my own way.

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StuartO - 2014-11-14 8:45 AM

 

Tracker - 2014-11-13 4:06 PM

 

...Having a go at Martyn for sharing his experience is uncalled for and suggests a certain attitude problem in itself?

 

Not unreasonable to point out the inconsistency in his expectations is it?

 

Stuart, what's up with ya' recently? :-S

...of late, you've latched on to Lenny(concerning his "Hymer water allowance" comments ), RobinH(with his Road traffic act/MIB remarks) and Zydeco Joe (and his Calorlite exchange)..and now this with Martyn...?

 

..and wasn't it you, who once accused *A N Other of , quote "provocative posts and always wanting the last *...........word " ? ;-)

(name substituted and word omitted)

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StuartO - 2014-11-14 8:45 AM

 

I think you are mssing the point Tracker. On the one hand (in another thread but quoted above) Martyn was advocating making a noisy fuss as a customer anytime he feels like it, to get his way - but he also wants his customers, when he is working as a delivery driver, to be nice and cooperative.

 

Not unreasonable to point out the inconsitency in his expectations is it?

 

If you want people to be friendly and helpful (eg by taking someone else's delivery for you) you don't start off by criticising their gloomy lighting do you? And it seems I'm not the only one who doesn't lower myself by continuing to whinge and moan as a customer, just to get my own way.

 

Fair comment Stuart - I must have missed the original post.

 

I too have no compunction in complaining vociferously when I get bad service or feel I have been conned but I do always try to keep it polite, calm and factual without bringing in personalities into it as that never helps to win an argument.

 

It has to be said that one of the best ways of focusing attention, particularly in a car dealer, is to make a loud but polite fuss in a busy showroom and refuse to move to a more 'suitable' location until resolution is agreed.

 

Insisting on good service I do not consider to be whingeing but it does depend on how it is presented.

 

I don't believe you are suggesting that we should accept poor service rather than demean ourselves to complain but that is how your observations could be interpreted?

 

Maybe the phrase 'getting your own way' is a bit misleading and should read 'insisting on good service in the supply of what was agreed and paid for'?

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Guest Peter James
Will85 - 2014-11-13 5:00 PM

 

This aggressive attitude has been developing since the 1920's when life was controlled by the moneyed people

 

When did life stop being controlled by the moneyed people?

 

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Some clarification needed here methinks.

 

The quote Stuart inserted on this thread (2nd post in ) was from Joe's Gas thread. I thought Stuart's response to Joe was over the top.

 

So in turn I made an over the top comment. And no, 2 wrongs are just that - 2 wrongs.

 

There's nil chance of me making a song and dance in a store, shop etc. I'll complain - but in an appropriate manner.

 

Returning to the point of this thread. Consider this, you're visiting a City and call into a Cafe for a brew, whilst there you ask for any recommendations of, say, local attractions.

 

The response is hopelessly negative.

 

Similar thing later in a different establishment elicits a helpful response.

 

Which establishment would you recommend?

 

That's was the objective of this thread.

 

Martyn

 

 

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Now I'll be provocative, for which I shall get into all kinds of trouble. :-)

 

With deepest respect, Martyn, I think you are failing to separate the roles of customer (i.e. master) and delivery driver (i.e. servant). Your criticism is that of the customer, where you expect the restaurateur to snap to attention when you enter. Your actual role was that of delivery driver, among the lowest of the low, who is expected to grovel suitably before the restaurateur (after all, he has to have some pleasures in life! :-)) and not to have attitudes or opinions.

 

Remember that classic John Cleese, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett sketch on class?

 

Cleese:

(In bowler hat, black jacket and pinstriped trousers) I look down on him (Indicates Barker) because I am upper-class.

Barker:

(Pork-pie hat and raincoat) I look up to him (Cleese) because he is upper-class; but I look down on him (Corbett) because he is lower-class. I am middle-class

Corbett:

(Cloth cap and muffler) I know my place. I look up to them both. But I don't look up to him (Barker) as much as I look up to him (Cleese), because he has got innate breeding.

Cleese:

I have got innate breeding, but I have not got any money. So sometimes I look up (bends knees, does so) to him (Barker).

Barker:

I still look up to him (Cleese) because although I have money, I am vulgar. But I am not as vulgar as him (Corbett) so I still look down on him (Corbett).

Corbett:

I know my place. I look up to them both; but while I am poor, I am honest, industrious and trustworthy. Had I the inclination, I could look down on them. But I don't.

Barker:

We all know our place, but what do we get out of it?

Cleese:

I get a feeling of superiority over them.

Barker:

I get a feeling of inferiority from him, (Cleese), but a feeling of superiority over him (Corbett).

Corbett:

I get a pain in the back of my neck.

 

When a delivery driver, you are the one who gets the pain in his neck! Just know you place, and stop whinging! Bloody lippy delivery drivers!! :-D

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Brilliant Brian :D

 

Of course you've inspired me to take tables at both restaurants in question and in turn becoming "The Master"

 

I will politely insist on being served by the uncooperative proprietors and turn the tables.

 

Master & Servant, I like. I didn't get my Title for nothing, may as well exploit it to the maximum 8-)

 

Martyn

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Will85 - 2014-11-13 5:00 PM

 

 

Then, partly due to WWII, winning at all costs became uppermost in British society and to achieve this people had to become aggressive ... at sport and unfortunately ... this progressed into everyday life.

 

 

 

I think WW2 had the opposite effect as it was a time of shared adversity.

 

Men came back from the war determined not to go back to the cap doffing past, and create a more equal society - consequently we had a Labour landslide, followed by the National Health Service.

 

Everything went wrong in the sixties, with flower - power, and the idea that it was wrong to control childrens behaviour. It was considered to be interfering with their human rights

 

We are now paying the price for those " progressive " ideas.

 

:-|

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Went to my local hardware shop that I patronise all the time, trying to source a certain size of self tapping screw, not having one that was exactly the same as one in my Heki roof light I asked if I could take just one that was closest to it to try, yes of course was the reply, that'll be 8p please.......................... :-S

 

this was just two days after I had spent £86 with them on decorating supplies, perhaps they felt perfectly justified in asking for 8p, but I thought it less than an ideal way to treat a loyal and constantly returning customer.

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Your Lordship may have forgotten, but since your elevation to the beerage, ahem peerage, you are no longer anything so common or vulgar as a mere gentleman, but a member of the titled aristocracy. These things are important, you know. I was about to apply for the post of butler, but have now had second thoughts. Gentleman indeed! :-)
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