11/18/09

Thanks!

Many thanks to Danielle, whose kind words gave Boss Man a boost and got him back in the kitchen with a smile. Sometimes it takes an outsider, who you don't see every day, to give you that much-needed kick in the behind, and remind you of why you do what you do in the first place. Elizabeth (lovely, sweet waitress with the dark hair) put it into perspective: "If some person on the street randomly yells nasty swear words at you, are you going to take it to heart? No. You're going to think that person is crazy, and get on with your life."

Well said, Elizabeth.

That being said, any serious artist, cook, writer, or any other creative sort of person will readily welcome constructive feedback. There have been times when some one's pointed out something specific, and we realised (to our horror) that they were absolutely right, and that it should be fixed! Heck, it's that honest feedback that keeps us striving ever-more into perfection. It's pointless to sit around patting ourselves on the back because we're making great food. That doesn't help us (or anyone else) to grow.

It's when we get that specific, constructive feedback that we can improve. I remember getting an email from someone who said that the food was just fine, but it took forever to get there. Boss Man and I then examined the wait time for food to arrive, and the person was absolutely correct. It really did take too long for the food to arrive, and what's more, it wasn't going up with the proper garnishes. It was because of a couple of very minor things that needed tweaking (for example, the person plating was taking far too many steps to do simple things). It took some re-training of our staff, but it made it so that not only did food go up faster, but that the plating person was a lot more confident in handling more than one ticket at the same time.

Cliff's niece Sunny pointed out that soup takes forever and a day to get hot when it's heated up to-order, so why not just keep the soup hot all day in one of those soup warmers (that we actually had already). Boss Man wanted the soup to be heated fresh to order rather than sitting in the bain marie, but it just took too long to heat and took vital time away from the platter moving the orders out swiftly. More importantly, the customers wanted their soup immediately. We deliberated, and ever since then, the soup arrives to the table faster than lightening. It may seem like a small thing, but when you can knock out major chunks of time-wasting, it's quite reassuring.

The point is that we're all receptive to feedback, because that's what lets us know how to make your experience perfect (which we all need to strive towards anyway). It's when the feedback is malicious that it doesn't do anything for the person giving it or the person getting it. So please, for all of our sake, don't be the random screaming nut job in the streets. Be passionate about your food, and let us know how we can make it go from good to great!
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