The Customer is Usually Unreasonable

Whoever said “the customer is always right,” didn’t have both feet firmly planted in reality. Us customers are a lot of things–cranky, whiny, disagreeable, demanding, annoying, short-tempered–but we certainly do not have a corner on being right.

That’s not to vilify us customers and make us out to be worse than we are, but it’s my experience that customers are either out to lunch in their demands or simply peg the wrong person when disenfranchised. We are completely in the right on a few occasions.

For example, every time I’m at a restaurant I find myself keeping careful watch on my water glass. If it’s empty, I expect it to be filled. That’s an unreasonable thing to expect EVERY time I’m at a restaurant. Oftentimes there isn’t enough staff to keep up with the number of tables, but the manager isn’t the one who receives a bad tip . . .

And if us customers usually expect better service than is possible or even deserved, then perhaps it’s time for businesses to adopt a new mantra: “Get rid of customers as fast as possible.” That takes into account the same need to take care of customers without the flattery.

Customers may not always be right, but a business can’t afford to have disgruntled people hanging around either. Besides, who’s keeping score on right or wrong? So much boils down to expectations.

I like the old farming mantra: “Git ‘er done.” Perhaps retailers could change it to: “Get ’em out.”

2 thoughts on “The Customer is Usually Unreasonable

  1. psmith

    Yangtze (spelling?) in Hatfield (gourmet Chinese) will amaze you with the staff’s concern for your water glass. Just a couple of sips, and you have a full glass again. If you are really thirsty, it’s the place to go. :o)

  2. ed Post author

    Chinese restaurants usually have great service. I ate at a Chinese restaurant once a week growing up and they were always filling up my water. Perhaps that is where I derived my standard from!

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