On Tuesday night I met up with a couple of mates who I hadn’t seen for a while.
We went to the Rose and Crown pub in Kings Langley. It’s local, decent ish food and usually ok service.
But our experience that evening was inconsistent to the point of schizophrenic and a lesson that all it takes is one staff member with a bad attitude to repel customers forever.
Let me begin.
We grabbed a table in the bar area as it was admittedly pretty busy.
We ordered our meals separately but at the same time, within no more than two minutes of each other.
A friend who ordered a starter for us to share was told that due to this his burger would come out a couple of minutes after my other friend and I would get our mains. Odd but no big thing.
Thinking no more of it we sat down and began putting the world to rights.
The lad that brought the starter was pleasant and efficient so no issues there.
Two mains came out just as we were finishing the starter and again we were told my friend’s burger would be along in a couple of minutes.
20 minutes later, 2 empty plates, another trip to the bar and one hungry burger less and miserable chap there was still no sign of the third meal in our table’s trilogy.
When my friend went and asked where it was the bar manager repeated the line that the starter being ordered separately had caused the delay and that ‘we’re really busy tonight.’
5 minutes later still the burger arrived with chips that looked limper than Leicester City’s defence this season. But it got worst.
The waitress made no attempt to apologise for the delay. When my friend asked her why it took so long she was downright rude. “You’re lucky you got it this quick as there were 30 people waiting to get served before you.” She spat dismissively (not literally but you know what I mean.)
Her attitude was only marginally worse than her scowling, stroppy service. She turned on her heels and told us ‘if you don’t like it speak to the manager.”
It was one of the rudest responses to a reasonable question I’ve ever heard from someone working in customer service.
Collectively our table had spent more than £60 and been treated like dirt by little Miss Attitude.
I wanted to complain to the manager but my friends didn’t saying that they just couldn’t be bothered.
Burger boy who was now munching his eagerly anticipated dinner said the best way of complaining was never to return.
I don’t agree with him but it’s a great example of what customer service experts call the silent assassin.
The person who has a bad experience with a business and doesn’t share it with the business owner but does it share it with his friends and family. And in this social media age of instant sharing that’s a terrible thing for any business that cares – which in this instance I don’t think they actually did.
We won’t being go back there any time soon.
Thanks for reading.