Tale of 2 Restaurants

I will be traveling over the next 2 weeks and may not be blogging but here’s one before I go…

customer service

(Something that is lacking in Malaysia but hardly anyone makes the attempt to improve it. Image source: http://www.tennentstrainingacademy.co.uk)

There is plenty of restaurants near my workplace and their services differs one from another. So are their prices. After a long time, I settled to 2 restaurants and here is the story of the 2.

Restaurant No. 1

Famous for it’s roti canai and creamy teh tarik in the morning, it is one of the newer shops around. One of the reasons, it is doing quite well is that the price of the food is considerably cheap. And wide open area at the front makes it rather easy place to lepak for a hot teh tarik in the evenings. Plenty of oily dishes during the lunch time but if you are careful enough, you can get good, fresh fish for lunch.

Restaurant No. 2

Compared to Restaurant No. 1, this restaurant has been around longer but it has it’s share of regular customers. It has less choice of food but it has it’s own style and presentations. The food is slightly pricey than the rest but overall reasonable. In my opinion, serves the best teh-o limau panas around.

I go to both restaurants on different days of the weeks and when I get bored with the other restaurants. Lately the Restaurant No. 1’s service has been turning to bad. You sit down and wait for someone to take your orders. No one comes until you call. And after telling them what your order is, you patiently wait for the meal only to find that it is not coming. The lady who took your order is seen taking order from someone else and later wiping the tables. I had to call another and repeat the orders and pray that this time, the person gets it right and bring my meal. The owner is busier chit-chatting with the restaurant workers than attending to the customers.

When I go to Restaurant No. 2, things are different – the owner himself waits at the entrance and welcomes you. He wishes you “good morning” and sees that his staffs attend to me immediately. And if I go in and sit down, the staffs brings me the menu and puts on the table before I even sit down on the chair. The food looks fresh and the drinks are served at the right temperature. And it is served without any delays. Unfortunately, the price of the meal is not cheap but as I take out money to pay for the meal, I at least, get a “thanks”. Unlike Restaurant No. 1 who takes your money as if you owe them something big.

It comes down to who can provide a better service. Price is a secondary issue. For those having restaurants or in the industry of service, this is something for you to ponder. And why I raising this is because I find, more frequently, a lot of restaurants are having this – take it or leave it attitude and soon, they are run out customers and had to close shop.

That is sad because their food and the price are great – they have a good chance to make it big but their service sucks big time. It does not cost much to improve on service – it does not take much to say “good morning” and “thank you”. Restaurant No. 1 may be surviving for now but keep up the bad service, you may find customers looking for other place to eat.

Perhaps, this is where Najib should be focusing on – building a developed and matured human resource and service level in Malaysia, instead of the dreadful Warisan Merdeka

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