Cafe Witness

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

The Often Overlooked Ingredient in a Cafe

Is it just me, or does the friendliness of a barista count a lot toward your likelihood to return to a cafe?

I was at a place I used to frequent quite often today and asked for a cup of decaf. (I'm on a decaf kick.) I was told it would take a few minutes to brew up, which was fine. The drink eventually came and life went on as we know it.

Later, I stopped back for two more cups of decaf and the (different) barista was not pleased. He informed me it would take a few minutes to brew. Evidently, this place makes decaf only on demand, which is odd. I could tell from his body language that he was not thrilled at the concept of wasting his time filling my order, so I asked if they had regular already available. Yes, he said, so I watched my order to regular.

"Thank God," he said, relieved, putting the brewing equipment down. Then, to his coworker, "These people and their 'decaf' -- what's up with that?" As though I'd walked into a coffee shop and asked them to make me a porterhouse.

Needless to say, that mystery ingredient that people in all walks of life tend to overlook: friendliness. I'm sure your job sucks, sir. Most people think their job sucks. But when your job is fulfilling my order, you don't have to remind me that your job sucks, because by extension, that lets me know I suck.

It also reminds me why I've stopped frequenting that place.


  • I am a stickler for customer service as well. People who don't like their jobs seem to think that they need to let everyone else know about. Like we need to be grateful that they are still performing their duties despite hating it. It is all about attitude if you ask me. If you approach your less than stellar job with a crabby attitude, that is what you get out of it. Besides, stop whining, get your ass in motion and do something. Self pity, one method of natural is the wrath of an unsatisfied customer.

    By Blogger Philosophy101, at 11:07 AM  

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