We constantly hear from restaurants how the economy, the HST, the increased minimum wage and the more stringent drinking and driving laws have affected their business. Fair enough and I sympathize.
However, the following experience highlights how an establishment can speed up their demise.
My wife and I returned to a full-service restaurant that we have often frequented.
The server brings us menus but notes that we now have to go to the counter to place orders. Huh? Whatever happened to customer service? I responded by saying that we would do so but please get us a couple of beers in the meantime.
Unfortunately, the server sheepishly said, we would have to follow her to the counter and place the order with her there, after which she would deliver the drinks to our table.
Totally flabbergasted, we pointed out how asinine this was as she was standing at our table and might as well take the order now instead of inconveniencing us.
We finally convinced her that, if we got up and walked, it would be out through the main entrance. Visibly embarrassed by the rules she had to follow, she said she would bring us our drinks.
That is when she added that she would require a credit or debit card to be held at the counter (as security) — a new policy of the restaurant.
At that point we did get up and walk out the front door, straight to a competing restaurant, where we enjoyed good service.
If restaurant management ever complains about how poor business is, don’t look to me for sympathy.
However, my heart does go out to the staff who have to work under such auspices of poor customer service.