Tuesday, July 28, 2009
No Beer for You? Customer Service...what should we expect?
I recently did a personal ranking of local Philly bars for someone who is putting together some composite rankings. It brought me back to my thoughts on where service should rank in determining the overall greatness of a bar. It also reminded me of my own thoughts that I shared with you last month about Toronado in San Francisco; I touched lightly on my thoughts of their consistently, uh, gruff service. Recently, Jay over at Hedonist Beer Jive, world traveler but based in San Francisco, broached the topic and gave his own take---a local's take on the venerable beer bar by the bay. It's interesting to compare thoughts between a local (like Jay) and a visitor (like myself) when it comes to opinions of establishments with reputations bigger than themselves. Go give it a read. It's to the point and thought-provoking........done? Now that you're back, what do you think? Can a beer bar survive with a customer service approach that borderlines on non-existent? Does it matter to you? Is this sort of thing like a game to see who can push each other farther in the short-term relationship...the customer or the service provider? Should establishments pride themselves on a locals/insiders-only type approach to dealing with customers? Do the customer service models of The Soup Nazi on TV or Pat's Steaks in real life South Philly or Toronado in San Francisco (and numerous other places of the ilk) add to the allure of an establishment? Does some part of psyche enjoy being battered by indifference and borderline rudeness? Do I/we ask too much? When you get back more than you get taken from, is that enough to compensate for substandard customer service? Or maybe we should start by defining exactly what is customer service?