Two experiences last week once again proved how important standards, procedures, and staff training are in any organization.
Since moving my
Nicely appointed with round whipped cream – accommodating domes, and a very nice selection of small lids, there was a void on this island – no lids that fit my Venti-impersonating container. I walked back to the counter- and as the group of five employees continued their conversation I interrupted, inquiring about a lid. No one had any idea which move to make next. Resembling a deer in the headlights on a foggy
Soon another employee- Bob- appeared. Investigating under the counter he found a sleeve- of small lids. He took a lid from one of the holders above, attempted to make it fit on my container and suddenly vanished. You must understand, at this point the lid became pointless. However, the mini-training episode I was envisioning was of Academy Award caliber. A call to Central Casting couldn’t have supplied five individuals who played the part of untrained lid hunters any better.
After a five minute break in the action, Bob returned with another sleeve of lids and a black marker attempting to impress with his efficiency as he wrote “small lids” on the sleeve, only to be followed by Jimmy’s reappearance with one lid in hand that fit my container. As he securely pressed the edges over my now very chilled iced tea I almost expected buzzers to sound and lights to flash. Was I on a reality TV Show? No, unfortunately I was involved in a very comically sad experience which broadcast the lack of training, standards and procedures at this particular Seattle’s Best store.
Only days later I went into the Sonoma Safeway Store in search of a few paper items. When I approached the register, I noticed the cashier appeared a bit befuddled.
“Excuse me sir. I am a little behind,” she said, wiping the chicken liquid from the rubber conveyor belt at the register. “I am supposed to be on my break now and nobody is here to help me. The store was just a mess this morning and the place was filthy. I will be glad when this day ends,” she added. Charming.
Both incidents directed me to other environs while once again highlighting the importance of training.
With busier summer months fast approaching, begin thinking of how to develop a power course in training your summer help to cater to your customer’s needs. If you can’t teach them to accomplish the goal, then at least instruct them on the procedure to make the customer feel more comfortable.
Before we begin thinking of a catering menu,develop a summer catering manual for the new hires. We know they will eventually neeed one and it is detrimental to your company to keep a lid on the small secrets to professionalism.