This story is interesting on many levels. Of course, there is the obvious “Boy meets King, King shafts Boy” angle to the story. Or perhaps “Fast Food forces Diet” as an alternative headline.
What intrigues me is that an average person (the BK Cashier) made such a significant mistake. This cashier isn’t some government employee somewhere, she isn’t working for NASA, or DoD. Nope, and every day person made a mistake that could happen to any of us, at any time–and it had a near-catastrophic effect for the Beane family. Mistakes aren’t limited to the government, and while we should all work to improve the “quality of service” we need to recognize that mistakes will happen (no matter how good an organization you are)–it’s what we all do after those mistakes that tends to separate the high quality organizations from the poor ones.
What is most difficult is that the provision of a “service” is not as simple as delivering a product. One cannot establish “The” process that will deliver a high quality good. We cannot sample the product to ensure the process is “in specification” since each delivery of the service is unique. Oh–and we expect everyone, from the High School kid at the fast food counter, to the introverted engineer, to be an expert at providing quality service.
So my challenge today is two-fold: First, insist (politely) on high quality service. And second: when you don’t receive it, work with the people who are there, not against them–and constructively let them know how they could improve.
PS: Does anyone else think that, perhaps, BK should have provided something above and beyond the meal for free?