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Treating Everyone Better - And Not Just Because Baby Jesus Wants Us To

Brushing up on my news this morning, I came across an article (listed below) that featured a France-based cafe taking steps to eliminate rudeness in their business. The article only highlighted this for one side of the counter, but I am a firm believer that pleasantness should come from both sides to ensure a great experience for all.

I come from a background of customer service - it's hard to go through an entire career and not have at least a small stint at a restaurant or likeness under your belt - and I found that many 'rules' in customer service are NOT accurate. Say for instance: the customer is always right; how ridiculous does that sound? It would be like an aquaintence of a friend joining them in your house for a chat, then that person demanding outrageous things from you. Sure, you want them to be happy, because they are an aquaintence of a friend, but you would still feel uncomfortable for someone to treat you that way; it's the same thing in any customer service-based job. Yes, patrons of a business allow the employees to get paid, but no one should have to put up with rude people - on any end.

The Holidays are notorious for this behavior. The way I handle it is to kill everyone I meet in a service-type industry with kindness (an old cheerleader trick I learned in High School). It's very hard to get defensive with anyone who initiates any conversation with a pleasant tone. I also smile and make eye contact; this was taught to me in a workplace communication class that works for any interaction with a person (goes back to that old 'actions speak louder than words' additive. Finally, it is always better to ask to speak with someone different if an interaction goes South. There is just no getting through to some people, no matter how nice you come across, and if you're a customer, asking to speak with someone else in a calm and pleasant (not sarcastic) tone is not unheard of. Even if you're an employee dealing with an unrulely customer, making up an excuse to take a break from the situation or going to a superior is not unheard of.

Bottom line: it doesn't matter who has the money or who is taking the money; if we're all nicer to eachother, it will make for a better day for everyone.

(Click here for the above mentioned article)
-Stevi


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12/12/2013 12:22PM
Treating Everyone Better - And Not Just Because Baby Jesus Wants Us To
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