Business Tips For Empty Restaurants 2

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Let’s see if you’ve ever made this business mistake.

A little more than a year ago I decided to try a Thai restaurant with a friend. We chose the place based on a recommendation. But quickly thought we may have the wrong restaurant.

The parking lot was empty on a Friday night. Not good for a dining establishment. And we quickly confirmed we were the only ones eating when we got inside.

No big deal. Maybe the place was still being discovered.

We were seated right away, but that was the only thing that happened quickly. The service was incredibly slow even though our voices echoed through the empty restaurant.

Took a long time to order. Took a long time to get our beverages. Took a long time to get our food. And the trend continued when it was time for the check.

We’ve never been back and it looks like the place closed. But you know what the most ridiculous part of it was?

While we turned in to Rip Van Winkle waiting for service we were forced to listen to the owner make phone call after phone call trying to bring in business.

Hey. Props for hustling. He called a nearby hotel and told them he had just sent people their way and asked if they’d return the favor. He called another hotel next door to see if they’d be willing to recommend his restaurant to guests.

That’s hustle and that’s smart.

But buddy. You had customers sitting in you restaurant and you didn’t take care of them.

You wouldn’t have to work so hard to get new customers if you took care of the ones you have.

A lesson for all.

What’s your worst restaurant experience?

Is there a business lesson you could share from a dining disaster? Leave it in the comments.

2 thoughts on “Business Tips For Empty Restaurants

  1. Reply Jim Sansi Feb 16, 2011 5:36 pm

    I have had many two hour lunches at a sushi place, if the food wasn’t so darn good I wouldn’t go back.

    But I am _always_ amazed at the number of businesses that actively refuse to take my money because of poor customer service or followup.

  2. Reply Stephen Dean Feb 17, 2011 10:37 pm

    Cheers Jim. I must be lucky, I get great service at my favorite restaurants.

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