[eff around] Subtle engineering = incredible hospitality
Read on Substack
June 8, 2023
Last weekend, my wife and I enjoyed breakfast at Plum Cafe in Costa Mesa. Christine ordered a decaf coffee, which came with unlimited refills. Throughout the dining experience, the staff did not interrupt us, but gave us what we needed. Servers dropped-off napkins and refilled Christine’s coffee at least three times. They didn’t interrupt us, but we actually interrupted them lol! The first time, I stopped the server before she poured the coffee, and said: “Wait, my wife wanted decaf and not regular coffee.” Server: “Yep, it is!” Me: “Awesome! Thank you! Sorry; just making sure!” The next time I stopped the server, who was different this time, I had changed my tone. “Hey - usually servers ask whether we had regular or decaf, or whether we had diet or regular, or what kind of soda. How did you guys know to give us decaf, without having to ask?” Server: “Oh! It’s because you have a napkin under your coffee. That tells all of the staff that you need decaf.” I was so delighted, that I had to share these learnings with you. Are there subtle, unnoticeable queues that you can incorporate and train - where: • Customers get what they need; • Customers aren’t interrupted; • Service doesn’t only rest (and bottleneck) on one person; • There is little-to-no friction on communication; and • Allows you to be more present and productive? Thanks for reading Eff Around & Find Out! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.