Monday, June 14, 2010

Treatment of Employees in the Service Industry

I got an email from a new western employee at (an unnamed coffee shop chain) who has been observing lately.  She writes:

"I cannot believe how many people bitch and moan in store - about NOTHING! I can understand if you have some feedback to give but really, most of these people are just stupid and THEY make mistakes or they twist it to become the staff's fault!

One guy bitched at the manager because he ordered 3 drinks (one was a double shot) and then he queried the bill.  He tried to add it up in his head and got it wrong.  The manager apologises (why I don't know) and the guy says "YOU SHOULD BE SORRY". Is that really necessary?

The other day some western women came in; older ladies probably in their 50s and not quite right. they hummed and hawed about what to order to eat and were hanging around for AGES. they then paid separately and one of them sat down at the table with me when she saw my starbucks card and started chatting. she was nice enough but a bit strange. we chatted about general stuff. then one of the other women in her group turned to her and said - starbucks are supposed to give you a free cup of coffee when you buy a mug. the lady beside me said "really, I didn't know that" and the other one said, "well these guys arent' giving me one". so the lady with me asked me if that was right. before i could even open my mouth the women said "DON'T ASK HER SHE DOESN'T KNOW SHE'S NEW". wtf?

I have always been aware that our staff are under pressure with the customers both in the fashion stores and in restaurants or starbucks stores. It's the clientele in kuwait; but what i'm surprised is at how offensive they are.

Thought you might like to write something on your blog from the staff perspective and a plight to be nice to staff and/or at least constructive if there's something negative to offer."


Crazy in Kuwait said...

I would say that most of the service industry staff are reasonable. I think the Filipino staff are easier to deal with as they are more friendly and bubbly than the Indian ones. The only thing I hate is when I order something and they try to speak real fast about making it bigger or adding caramel or some extra charge. I can catch them but imagine if you don't speak English real well and those people just say yes to anything to avoid embarassment. It's not like the staff receives bonuses when they have people upgrade or add stuff and even when you say no sometimes the staff automatically adds it then I have to fight about the extra charge I said NO to. I hate when I go to a restaurant I've been going to for years suddenly changes the rules. If something has changed I think the staff should notify the patrons so when they receive their bill they are not in shock over some unknown extra charges.

Summer said...

Its terrible what happens to them!!

Stani said...

the country's F'd up , automatically people here tend to loose it too after a period of time. Hope i dont loose it too like those customers !!!!

Anonymous said...

It's embarrassing to be an expat indistinguishable from the one who is verbally abusing the wait staff, talking loud enough to be heard in Iraq, and demanding that the manager apply the discount for 'XYZ club' even though the proof (membership card) " at home." What is it about the illusion of power that causes people to turn into such monsters?