The Yellow Note that Made me Turn Red

In Touch - Newsletter - #38

Welcome to the thirty-eighth edition of "In Touch". As always, I would love to continue the conversation so please hit "reply" and let me know what you think.

Story of the Week: The Yellow Note that Made me Turn Red.

There is a very special coffee shop where I go with my wife Christine every morning. It’s our favourite. A small, cosy place in Limassol, always buzzing with great people who meet there for pre-work coffee and good breakfast.

Last Tuesday morning, while ordering our breakfast, my wife noticed a bright yellow note sticker on the wall high above, right behind the counter so that everyone could see it.

"Ask Michael V. for € 0.50/bottled water" it said on the note.

Christine felt uncomfortable to see this yellow sticker as a public reminder that I didn’t pay for the water. However, I was neither confused or uncomfortable, I was disappointed. It felt bad because my favourite place let me down. There are different ways a business can handle situations where a customer forgot to pay or an employee forgot to charge for a small item. Public shaming leaves a bitter aftertaste to the customer and should not be used even as a last resort. 

Of course I did not stop going to this coffeeshop, it’s still my favourite one and I get it, we are not perfect. But I could not help but wonder how this will affect their business in the future. My experience showed me that successful businesses are the ones who strive to delight and not disappoint their loyal customers.

Words of Wisdom

Customer Service:

“Customer service should not just be a department, it should be the entire company.”

Tony Hsieh

A Question to Ponder, dear reader.

“What, in your opinion, went wrong in my favourite coffee shop?”

Hit reply and let me know.


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