I watched a really good documentary recently about stress and pressure and the correlation between the two and why some jobs are more stressful than others. For example I was a tad surprised to find that being a waiter or a waitress was one of the most stressful jobs as basically they had no real control over the outcomes.
When you think about it they are only as capable as the chefs to cook the food before they can serve it. So, if like me you were entertaining important clients and the food took over two hours to be served, then the stress supply chain worked like this.
I encouraged my guests to leave as soon as we had finished i then asked to speak to the Manager, the poor waitress looked crestfallen and apologised and said that she would get the Manager. I sat waiting for 20 minutes while the Manager busily ran around not making any eye contact with me. The waitress came over and asked if the Manager had spoken to me and I said no.
She then went away and came back with the bill which had been reduced by £45.00 I thanked her and explained my issue was not about money but about reputation and damage. She then got rather upset, which surprised me as I was very poiite as always so I said to her not to worry this was not personal she had done her job to the best of her ability. The issue was that they were really busy and could not cope with a full restaurant and two private parties.
To be honest looking back being the waitress in the middle between stressed out chefs and customers waiting for service is a bad place to be at. If you think about some jobs, Police, pilots, Air Traffic Control they all have clear command structures they can fall back on but not the case in a bar or restaurant.
So next time I am in that situation I will as ever follow the same process as ever polite and fair but important to put the case for why there is dis satisfaction and suggestions to help improve. What does not work is loud and rude making a scene for the sake of it. I have seen that a few times and it is just unpleasant to observe and makes the aggressor look like a fool.
So the lesson learned is my dear old dad used to say never judge until you have worn the other man,s moccasins and i have to say he had a point.