Temporary Improvements

Day one of my first NaNoWriMo.  I don’t know what really to expect, so I probably overprepped.  I planned on planting myself in front of the computer and not moving for hours and hours.  So, to make sure I was uninterrupted, I ordered food from Pizza Hut to eat first, or during, or whatever.  This post isn’t about the writing part, it’s about the food part (but not about the eating part).

I got to PH and picked up my pizza.  It’s a different crew tonight and I don’t recognize anyone.  Seeing as I go there weekly, more or less, we kinda know each other.  Anyway, when the counter person came out with my food, she handed the pizza to me and walked off.  That’s kind of rude in and of itself, but the question popped into my head that I wasn’t asked to look at the pizza first to make sure it was done correctly.

When I got to my car, I wondered more.  Wasn’t that a thing for Pizza Hut?  Something like, “Your pizza is free if we don’t ask you to look at it?”  Now, I don’t particularly care if my pizza is free or not.  I’m pretty sure I still have a credit on file with them that I’ll probably never use since I always order online.  But, Pizza Hut was obviously concerned about customers seeing their pizzas at some point.  It’s logical.  Catch mistakes before they leave the store.  The customer won’t be nearly as pissed off as they would be if they had to turn around and drive back for a replacement.  So to incentivize this behavior in their employees, they established this rule, with the penalty of having a charge-off if the employees didn’t comply.

Ok, so an employee didn’t follow the protocol.  But when I looked back in my memory, I didn’t see the rule promoted or displayed anywhere in the store.  At least nowhere that I noticed it.  How does a rule like this just end?  That’s like my Quicken post where Intuit promoted better customer service free for a limited time.  It’s not worth doing if you’re not going to do it all the time. (And in retrospect, how weird is it to explicitly say you have to pay for better service?  It’s more like an unspoken thing.)

The same thing for DQ and their upside-down Blizzards.  The Blizzard is supposed to be free if the cup isn’t flipped over when they hand it to you.  But that’s not a universal rule.  When I was back in PA, the DQ there had a sign stating they were not participating in the “upside-down or free” promotion.  I’m unsurprised by that considering the customer base in that town, but regardless, I know the “upside-down or free” promotion will end at some point.  And then what?  It just goes back to the way it was.  Why do it in the first place?  In DQ’s case, I suppose it’s a wow-factor, albeit a lame one.  Yeah, it’s thick, yippee.  And if it’s always going to be thick, why not always flip it?  Or why ever do it?  What does giving it away for free have anything to do with anything?

When I stand back and look at it, I find it weird that a company has to reward a customer for an employee not doing a particular action.  Granted, there are some examples like “if you don’t get a receipt”, which only exposes the fact that the business hires thieves.  But how about, “if we don’t tell you about our drink specials” or “if we don’t ask you to order an appetizer”?  Your meal will be free if we don’t annoy you?

Maybe this has contributed to the rise in online ordering and take-out orders.

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