As a person with many years of experience in the food service industry, I have encountered every kind of customer from the sweet little old lady, to the drunk, rude, and non-existing tipper. I, on the other hand also have experience in being a customer who has had to deal with missing food and workers who have absolutely no idea what they are doing. I have been given gifts from customers, and one time I got a hamburger thrown at my head. So with all this experience in this area, I decided to share my opinion on why customers and food service workers do not get along.
For reasons known, I am not going to disclose my place of employment, only to say that it mainly serves coffee. Aside from the main gripes that employees have about working in the food service industry, nothing is more annoying than when a customer comes through the drive thru, and sits there for five minutes only to order a bottle of water. Reasons for this being annoying should be obvious, but I will explain my reasoning. As soon as a car pulls up the the menu and speaker box a timer starts going, it is called speed of service. This is meant to keep in place a flow for the drive thru to move smoothly but also make sure the workers are not taking a day and a half to get you a bagel. Speed of service in my store is supposed to be between 20 and 30 seconds per order, from start to finish. Workers in fast food do not aim to get your order wrong, forget food, or make mistakes because honestly we don’t want to hear your complaints. People make mistakes, and we are only human. I am truly sorry that I only put 2 sugars instead of three, but yelling at me is not going to make it any better. I have literally told people to leave the drive thru because they thought it was funny to come through only to ask me what I would do for a Klondike bar. Granted, it was a tiny bit humorous, I was working mid-nights at the time and that kind of distraction could have caused serious safety and security issues.
Now, on to the other side of the counter, I have seen workers go to the bathroom, return and not wash their hands. I have also gone to fast food establishments and ordered five things, repeated my order four times, only to have food missing. As a customer at a fast food restaurant, I do not want to be treated rudely simply because I am there and they feel they have better things to do. I am paying for the product I am receiving, and you are being paid to sell that product, please do your job, and do not take out your personal issues out on me.
I understand that people have bad days, and have lives outside of the workplace. Being both a customer and employee, I apply the golden rule, simply treat others they way you would like to be treated. If people did not come through, I would not have a job, and if that happened people would not get their coffee, yikes! All I am trying to say is we can get along if we just try to have a little insight into the person standing across the counter from you.