Saturday, February 24, 2007

The "Norm" Principle


For you kids of both the '80's and current re-runs, I hope this stirs up memories of a cozy little nook in Boston. Home to Sam, Woody, Diane, Rebekah, Cliff, Norm, Frazier, Carla and the rest of the gang at Cheers.

My point? People feel special when they're enthusiastically and sincerely greeted. A place "where everybody knows your name-and they're always glad ya came" (go ahead, sing along with me) is a place where we want to be. Well, I can think of exceptions, but go with me here.

So here's the scenario tonight at Crispers, a typical counter service restaurant here in town:

SCENE: in line waiting for the girl behind the counter to take our order

GIRL: "Is this your first time here?"
ME: "No."
GIRL: "..................."
ME: "What would you have done differently if I answered yes to your question?"
GIRL: "I would have said 'welcome.'"
ME: "Oh."
GIRL: "I have to ask or I'll get in trouble."

I'd have been pleased with "welcome." I wonder how much time the manager, or worse yet, corporate, put into this little ditty of a policy.

May the places where you're a "Norm" continue to increase.

1 comment:

Jana said...

So true!
Have been in the industry for a zillion years, & have my own NORM! theory...

Remember your customers NAME
Remember their ORDER
Treat them with RESPECT
Make the experience MEMORABLE

Have a great weekend! Cheers, jj