When the World brings you soup and there’s a fly in it

 

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I’m in the process of writing-well, actually, finishing a book about restaurant service entitled, Getting to Wow! First Class Restaurant Service

So, why wouldn’t my blog be the same title as my book?  Good question.  For one, I think it’s catchy-“Soupfly”.  But beyond that, since my book is about Service-and First Class Restaurant Service- I wanted a title that would be memorable.  Of course, I could call my blog-“Excellent Restaurant Service”.  But then you’d be compelled to remember-wait, was it “Restaurant Service Excellence”? or “Excellence in Restaurant Service”? or… you get the idea.

So… -yep, Soupfly, it is.  Yes, I’ve made it a compound noun.   That’s right-Soupfly.  No, it’s not in the dictionary.  But someday it may be.

Now to be forthright-I hate when people say-“to be honest with you”.  Well, what have you been until now?  Less than honest?  But I digest.  Digress.

Actually, in all my years of working in the service industry-I have never seen a fly in someone’s soup, ever.   We’ve all heard Alannis Morisette sing of “a black fly in your Chardonnay”.   And that may make more sense and be more realistic, perhaps, but it certainly is not  quick and easy to type.  Nor is it short and sweet and a great name for a blog.   A BLACK FLY IN YOUR CHARDONNAY.  More likely, it would be a fruitfly in your Chardonnay.  But this is my blog and I like my title so, hence it is now and ever shall be called SOUPFLY.  Unless I decide to change it.

Aside from all the above drivel, (or is it drivvel?), let’s be serious for a moment.  The concept of Soupfly is actually the antithesis of Excellent Restaurant Service and it presents an opportunity to respond in a way that allows you to provide exceptional customer service.  Now, granted, I am currently not working as a server today but if I were, I would not necessarily hope for but I am quite certain that I would welcome a Soupfly.  For such an event is rich with possibilities.

So, let’s consider: If there were a fly in my guest’s soup, how would I respond?

First, I believe it’s important to clarify-Is the fly floating visibly on top of the soup or does our diner discover it as he spoons a bit and is about to bring it to his mouth?

If indeed, the fly is floating on top of the soup as if it were enjoying a mid-afternoon summer day on an inflatable raft, sunning itself and enjoying an adult beverage while in the soup, then shame on me, the server, for not paying closer attention while picking up said bowl.  In this case the lesson of the Soupfly is: we must pay attention to details.  If you as a server walk into the kitchen, chef says order up and you grab the bowl of soup and don’t really look at it, inspect it before you leave the kitchen, then I would say you’re not really a very conscientious server.

There is a principle that states “You can’t expect what you don’t inspect.’”  You must be aware of and know what you are bringing to your guest.  Is it what they ordered?  Is it prepared correctly?-Any requested modifications, ie. sauce on the side, no bacon etc., done as ordered?  Do not blame the kitchen or your chef if a Soupfly is just floating comfortably on the surface of the soup and you don’t notice it until after you’ve served it to your guest.  If it’s visible, then you my friend are responsible.  You may have not placed it there but it’s on you if you bring it to your guest.

Next scenario-You serve your guest the soup, no visible Soupfly.  You’ve carefully perused the surface of the soup, nothing visible but the soup itself and steam coming off of it.  A few moments later, however, your guest flags you over to witness that indeed there is a fly in their soup, or a hair in their pasta or a fingernail in their gumbo or even a band-aid in their chili.

{Side note-in my opinion, none of the above are very catchy blog titles-“gumbo fingernail”, “pasta hair”,  etc.}

The difference, however, is that though a Soupfly would most likely be visible on top of soup, a hair in the pasta or the other two examples would not be.  So, if said foreign object is immersed, hidden, folded in or tossed together and not visible in the food, then of course you cannot be held responsible for unknowingly bringing it to your guest.  At this point, it really is irrelevant how it got there, the only thing that matters is how will you respond?

I have seen servers actually stand there and argue with the guest as to whether the foreign object came from the kitchen or whether it was planted there.  They say things like, “Sir, there was no fly in your soup when I brought it out to you. I know your type, always trying to get something for free.  Well, I’m not buying it.”

Others might say something to the effect of, “Look sir, I didn’t make your soup, I can’t control what goes on back in that kitchen. I’m just a server.  Do you want me to get you something else?”

Others will completely shirk any responsibility and simply say, “Do you want to talk to a manager?”

So, back to the title-“Soupfly” Soupfly brings out in a person whatever is already intrinsically there.  If I served a guest soup and they told me there was a Soupfly in it,  my response would be very different from any of the above.  Rather, I would first apologize profusely.  Second, I would ensure them that this Has Never Happened Before.  And if it were now clearly visible on the surface of the soup, I would say, “Shame on me.  I thought I looked.   It is absolutely my fault and I am so very sorry that I missed it.   We are going to remedy this situation immediately.”

Now, if what you ordered was your absolute favorite, say, an amazing bouillabaisse-if you are like most people, you probably don’t want a new, freshly made, clean bowl of the same sans  the Soupfly.  Just the sight of the same dish still conjures up repulsive memories and an emotional gut response that certainly doesn’t entice one to attempt it again.  You’ve lost your appetite (and your faith in humanity} Well, maybe not the latter.  If it were me  all I could think of doing is cringeing and saying

“G-r-r-o-s-s.”

 

WITH THAT I WELCOME YOU TO MY BLOG

To Be Continued…

This entry was posted on July 8, 2014. 1 Comment

20 Positive Affirmations for Success during times of Uncertainty

Welcome Back to Soupfly!
During this time of uncertainty, many people are responding in different ways to self-quarantine and social distancing.
For many this time is an opportunity to pivot, to be creative & innovative.
For others they may be overwhelmed with fear, worry & concern.
Regardless of what you may be feeling or how you may be dealing with this situation, I do know that our Mindset and what is going on internally will have a powerful impact on us daily-either positively or negatively.
If we spend much of our day on Social media or watching the news-negative stuff is going to get in.  We must guard our minds. We must choose to control our thoughts.
I personally have been feeling quite a mental funk for the past 12 days or so.  I already work from home. So, I don’t think it’s that.
Normally, I am a very positive person.  My normal daily routine is to write in my journal, listen to positive messages on YouTube while showering and getting dressed and stating out loud positive affirmations. But these last days, I may or may not write in my journal, I’m not listening to my normal positive messages on Youtube and before today, I don’t remember when I last spoke out loud my positive affirmations.
We’ve all learned that ‘What you focus upon expands”  “What you think about you bring about”.
These past days I wake up with motivated thoughts of what I’m going to do and accomplish.  Then after a bit of taking in Social media and  Me NOT controlling my thoughts, a feeling of lethargy sets in. I’m not motivated.  Being one who tends not to believe what is fed to us by the media, makes it even more difficult because then my mind just goes reeling.  I have been aware and cognizant of my situation but I really was allowing myself to NOT be in control.
Yesterday, I sat down and decided to create my own Positive Affirmations for Success in the Midst of Uncertainty.  I offer them here to you.  If these can bring encouragement, confidence, positivity to your day, then please use them.
I suggest that you find a quiet place preferably in the morning, as you start your day.
Take a moment to take in some deep breaths and exhale.  Then, Read the Affirmations aloud, with feeling & conviction. Read them daily. Even 2 or 3 times a day. Read them all at one sitting-only takes a few minutes.  Or read 5 a day.
I pray that this may be helpful to you. If you’d like to reply, I’d love to hear from you.
I am Choosing to start my day with these Affirmations as a daily habit.
Blessings,
Christoff J. Weihman
ASPIRE Enterprises
Las Vegas, NV
Christoff@aspire2wow.com
Christoff360.com
p.s. If you are doing great during this time and really thriving, please consider reaching out to friends, family members, clients or colleagues to check in with them.

1. At this moment I choose to focus on what I’m grateful for-this sets the tone for my day

2. With everything that is going on, I Am still Focused & Productive in my Life & Business

3. Despite statements about being ‘non-essential’, to the contrary, I know that I Am Vital, Important & Valuable. I Have Greatness within Me & the world needs me to share my gifts

4. Although timelines & outcomes may be uncertain, I remain strong in my Faith. I Am certain that this too shall pass

5. I Have the Desire, Determination & Discipline to make the best of this time in all that I do each day

6. I Am blessed with Vision & Creativity.

I Seek & Find new opportunities to pivot & thrive personally & professionally during this time.

7. Daily I choose to be an example of Joy, Faith & Kindness to others.

8. Today I Choose to control my Thoughts, my Feelings & my Words & to express Positivity through them

9. Fear, Panic & Worry have no place in me. Instead, I live by Faith that God is in control & has my best interest in mind

10. Daily I make Positive choices to strengthen my immune system, stay active, eat healthy & get proper rest

11. As I Focus on my Health, my Family, my Business, I also remember Friends, Colleagues, Clients & others & communicate support to them, reminding them they’re not alone

12. I set an intention to make this day Powerful, Peaceful, Positive, Productive & Profitable

13. I easily attract to myself great opportunities to Serve more clients at a higher level while increasing my income

14. I Am Blessed to be a Blessing.

I Focus on Developing my Gifts, my Talents & my Message so I can be a Greater Blessing to a larger number of people.

15. When I have feelings of uncertainty, doubt or worry, I immediately shift my mindset, my focus & my state & move forward with gratitude & positivity.

16. I Choose to only use Social Media in positive ways . I share joy, happiness, encouragement & positive humor.

I share my expertise & my message of service to empower & benefit others.

17. When I feel weak or discouraged, I acknowledge these feelings & humbly ask for & receive support & encouragement from others.

18. I Choose to take action daily to grow my business & better myself. I seek out new opportunities of learning, I develop my skills, talents & abilities.

19. I Choose to make the most of each new day. I open myself to new ideas, new tools & technologies to equip & grow my business. I attract new & exciting partnerships that are mutually beneficial for all.

20. I Recognize that with everything happening on the outside, that this is truly an internal game. I have no control over the news, social media or the government. I Choose to control my mindset, my attitude, my thoughts, feelings & actions

21. My Dream, my Vision, my Talents, my Message are all Gifts from God.

I realize & embrace that God has a higher calling for me.

I’m too Big to play Small. It’s My Time

This entry was posted on March 27, 2020. 1 Comment

Love-Your Work ?

Welcome Back to Soupfly!

This is an excerpt from a post that we did a while back. Considering all that is happening these days, I thought it would be appropriate to repost. Happy Reading!

Do What You Love & Love What You Do

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Here’s a question: Do you Love your work? Do you love what you do?  Is yours one of those ‘Love-Hate’ relationships that many people talk about when it comes to work?  If so, why is that the case?  Or, like some, do you say, “I hate my job.  I despise my position, profession, the job I do”?  And if you don’t like what you do, or you don’t have a love for it, have you ever asked yourself why?

I am of the belief that we should enjoy what we do for a living.  We should gain a feeling of fulfillment and satisfaction from the work we do.  We should be motivated to get out of bed in the morning and be eager to go do whatever it is that we do. There should be something about our job, our work, our career that makes us smile.  That gives us pleasure.  Do you love your work?  Some of you reading this may think, “Well, I’m only a _____________” fill in the blank.  “My job is not important, doesn’t really matter.”  If you have that mindset, then you have been negatively conditioned by society, the media, your peer group, or a combination of them, to believe that some jobs are more important than others.  That some professions are more valuable and make a greater contribution to the company or society.

There are NO “Unimportant” Positions

My wife is a nurse, certainly what she does is more important than a garbage collector, one might think.  While I admit that what she does has great value, so does every single person who works in that hospital.  There is NO position that is ‘unimportant’.

Michelle, leads a huddle before the start of the shift each day, gathering all the nurses in her unit that will be working that shift and gives them a pep talk, a moment of motivation.  I’ve never been because I don’t work there,  but she sometimes will relay the story to me. One day she told me that she invited Lucia (not her real name) to join the huddle. Brenda is the hospital housekeeper.  Brenda told Michelle she didn’t understand why she is being asked to join the nurse’s huddle.  She thought maybe she was in trouble or did something wrong.  Michelle, told her no, she wasn’t in trouble, she wanted her to be at the meeting, but didn’t tell her why.

So, when the time came for the huddle, the nurses all gathered and there was Brenda, standing beside them.  Some of the nurses knew her, most recognized her, but many didn’t know her or her name.  Michelle introduced Brenda to the group and told them that she is the one who cleans, sanitizes, sterilizes and prepares each and every hospital room for their patients.  When a patient that was in isolation is discharged from a particular room, that room is contaminated.  No patient can be brought into that room until Brenda does her job.  An outsider might think that what Brenda does is not as important as the job of the doctors  or nurses in that hospital, but without her, the doctors and nurses cannot do their job. If she does not do her job and do it properly and well, then actually people could die.  So, some might think it’s only doctors and nurses that save lives,  but in reality people like Brenda, actually save lives as well.  By cleaning and sanitizing rooms.

On that day, Michelle helped her team, and Brenda to realize how incredibly important each person’s job is.  I’ve never met Brenda, but the way Michelle describes her, I know this woman takes pride in what she does AND I’ll bet that she loves her work.

 “I am great at what I do, because I love what I do”

EXCELLERATING CUSTOMER SERVICE TO FIVE STARS & BEYOND!

Christoff J. Weihman

ASPIRE Enterprises, Las Vegas NV

702 848 8955/ Christoff@aspire2wow.com

For a copy of my books; Getting to WOW! or The Customer Experiencehttp://www.christoffjweihman.com/index.html#books

To Inquire about Five Star Customer Service/Experience Training for your Team: http://www.christoffjweihman.com/Speaking-Training.html

This entry was posted on March 14, 2020. 1 Comment

I’m Happy, Mad, Disappointed-How about YOU?!

I am Happy, Mad, Disappointed. MGM will be closing their buffets until further notice due to Covid19 prevention.

***Happy-smart move.
**Mad cause it’s taken a virus for people to think about hygiene/sanitation.

***Disappointed for the companies that will lose business, the guests that will miss that Vegas experience and Disappointed that proper hygiene and sanitation in the Service & Hospitality Industry has been sorely lacking for years. But we, the public put up with it. People who make a fuss about it, (like me) are labeled anal.

How many times have you been to a bar and sat there for hours and NEVER ONCE HAVE YOU SEEN THE BARTENDER WASH HIS/HER HANDS? That’s just normal. Not to mention them fondling the top of your glass with their never-been-washed-for-hours hands.

How many times have you been to a restaurant and witnessed a busser pick up dirty glasses off a table with his/her hands inside the glasses and then minutes later that person is now your food runner bringing out your food. Did they wash their hands before picking up and delivering your food? Who knows? Yummy. Enjoy!

Or how often have you seen a Server who constantly wipes their face, scratches their nose or runs their fingers through their hair then uses those same hands to pour your wine, serve your food etc.

Do the managers have time or the mindset to observe whether their staff are washing their hands or not? No. They’re busy running operations.

Tell me why any of the above is acceptable, allowed, ok? Furthermore, in most places it’s just standard practice.

So, I say Good on MGM for closing down the buffets.

AND NO this is not all I have to say.
I have a whole chapter in my book Getting to WOW!, published pre-Covid1- entitled-Getting the Book out of the Back of Your Pants (And Other Matters of Hygiene & Sanitation)

Many of you saw my post of 10 days ago wherein I walked into the bathroom of a local restaurant and saw on the floor in the stall next to me-a black service staff apron on the floor. And then when I went out to wash my hands I saw this, a service tray used to serve food and drink on the sink. Good thing the staff member was washing his hands but so what, where was the tray while he was in the bathroom stall?

Come on Service Professionals, you have the capacity to do better, you actually know better and your Guests deserve it but you’ve been laxed for SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO LONG.

No, this is not all I’ve got to say.
We’re just getting started.

Excellerating SERVICE & HOSPITALITY TO FIVE STARS AND BEYOND!!!

Christoff J. Weihman

P.S. AND IS ANYBODY REALLY SURPRISED THAT THERE’S OUTBREAK OF COVID19 ON CRUISE SHIPS? You Gotta be kidding me.

Top 10 Reasons You Should Invest in Training for Your Team

 

 

Welcome Back to Soupfly! It has been a while. But we are Back!!

 

 

I’d like to share with you the Top 10 Reasons why it is imperative that you invest in Training for your Team.  We live in a day when Marketing and Social Media dominate.  If a business does not have a presence on Social Media-it is bound to be swallowed up by those that do engage in Social Media. But one should not choose between investing in Marketing for their business or Customer Service Training.

Social Media is a very powerful form of marketing. I’ve heard it been said more than a few times that “Marketing is the life-blood of a business”.  If that is true, then Customer Service is the ‘Heart that pumps that blood’.  If a business is constantly generating new customers but they do not take care of their existing customers with Excellent Customer Service-then they’ll always be chasing new customers to replace the ones who left because of poor service. That is not a great strategy for growth.

Here are the Top 10 Reasons that Training is Vital for the Growth of Every Business:

  1. Training Makes your Team feel more engaged 
    An Engaged employee will always deliver better service to your clientele than a disengaged one. If they feel valued & appreciated they will treat your customers that way. How your customers feel is a direct reflection of how they feel they’ve been treated.
  2. Training Elevates the Morale of the Team
    It builds greater sense of unity and teamwork which leads to increased morale.
  3. Training sharpens your Team’s Skills, Techniques & Knowledge.
    Every professional of any industry must hone their skills to stay sharp, practice their techniques and learn new ideas and best practices to stay on ahead of the competition.
  4. Training Sets Standards for Mindset, Attitude & Actions
    Standards show that you are serious.  Your Team will be challenged & encouraged to step up their game.
  5. Training Establishes Continual Improvement as a Crucial Company Value
    A company cannot rightly claim that continual improvement is a value if they do not provide ongoing training opportunities for their team. They will not just naturally improve with the passing of time.
  6. Training Leads to Excellence which leads to a more confident Team. 
    A more confident Team will generate more Sales.
  7. Training Creates Excitement, Enthusiasm, Expectation & Positive Energy.
    Training brings a fresh perspective which creates positive energy
  8. Training Inspires & Motivates Your Team.
    Sometimes Team members get into a rut, a mindset of monotony.  Training brings in a sense of freshness-something new to learn- to focus on.
  9. Training Brings Reminders of Best Practices that may have been forgotten or neglected.
    It brings to light opportunities for improvement and growth.
  10. Training Empowers Your Team to Be at their Best.
    Your Customers Deserve to receive the Best Service & Experience possible. One cannot be at their best without training. So, without training your Team, in essence you are cheating your customers.Thank you for reading. I appreciate all my Soupfly Readers from all over the world.
    Please Feel free to comment and to share.
    Also to connect with me on any Social Media check out: https://christoff360.com/

    Excellerating the Customer Experience to Five Stars & Beyond!!

    Christoff J. Weihman

This entry was posted on July 4, 2019. 1 Comment