Thursday, February 19, 2009

Squeaky Wheel Gets The Grease

As a bartender, I recognize that in order to make a decent living (AKA: fill my tip jar), I must provide good customer service. I also have to be sure to provide a consistent level of customer service. Meaning, I can't be good to some people and crappy to others. I have to be nice to everyone.

So in my efforts to provide exceptional customer service, I find that some people are naturally going to require extra attention. Which is fine. I just don't get the people who, no matter what I do, can never seem to be pleased. Their drink isn't strong enough. I'm not helping them fast enough. Their steak is too rare. And no matter what it is that they are complaining about, if I offer to fix it for them, they refuse. They would just rather sit and complain. I call these types of customers my "squeaky wheels".

You ever hear the phrase, "The squeaky wheel gets the grease"? My "squeaky wheel" customers get a lot of grease (extra attention) because they bitch and moan about everything. Being in the service industry, it's my job to try and satisfy all of my customers. Sometimes I think people are so unhappy in their own lives that they come into a situation where they are being served and take it out on whomever is serving them. If they are dining at my bar, it's me that they take their shitty day out on.

With all of the extra attention that the squeaky wheels require, I think it would be fair to add on a special "squeaky wheel" service charge to their bill. Then if they tipped above and beyond what would be considered a normal tip, I could remove the extra charge from their bill. Surprisingly, a lot of my squeaky wheels don't tip all that much, considering all the extra work and grief they put me through during their time at my bar.

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