The paradox of slack periods and lousy customer service
This is something that I learnt at my first job, which had me managing Food and Beverage outlets at the Taj. That service failures would be common during 'slack' periods at the restaurant. And its true. Not just for restaurants, but for any retail outlet.
Yesterday saw us 'traipsing' off to Big Bazaar for our grocery purchases. We chose a Monday 'cos we knew that it would be less crowded. Plus it rained here in Bangalore. And it was. Yet the downside was not having anyone respond to us, when we had a query. That's 'cos the floor staff just weren't alert to buyer needs. It was obvious why. 'Cos there weren't too many customers in. Ditto for our visit to a Bata Shoe outlet. No response from the store staff to the extent that we left.
Retailers must dread slack periods more than the busy ones. Not just in terms of lower revenues, but also for slack in customer service. What makes this even more dangerous is the fact the buyer is less forgiving when the store isn't busy as compared to when it is. Buyers remember how they were treated during such times and may even choose to stay away from the store itself.
Cartoon : http://www.strategicmarketingmontreal.ca