This I Believe

Jeff - Libertyville, Illinois
Entered on May 2, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Everyone Deserves a Little Respect

Today people like to have what they want, and they don’t want to wait for it. People often express there impatience and frustration at not getting exactly what they want by being ungrateful, inconsiderate, and rude to the people who are serving them. The people who are serving them are often low paid, poorly educated individuals or students working to pay for their education.

I work in a fast-food restaurant and witness examples of public misbehavior by customers. There are numerous kinds of misbehavior displayed by customers. Some customers are just plain rude. If they find that there food order has not been filled properly they act like it is a personal insult. They often cut in line to inform the order taker and expect immediate correction. Part of the time the fault is theirs, but the restaurant workers always try to please the customers. Most errors occur when customers change their order. Sometimes errors occur because the customers do not speak English well. Placing order in “drive-thru” speakers can increase chances for error, since it is more difficult for employees to hear what the customer wants. In some situations the customers do not speak clearly or mumble and seem to think the order taker should to able to read their mind.

Some customers try to intimidate the order takers. This behavior is most often seen in customers who enter the restaurant to place their order. I’ve had customers lean over the counter so that their face as only a few inches from mine and in a very serious manner give me their order. My restaurant gives discounts to the employees of a corporation in the area. Some of these employees act arrogant and flash the employee ID hanging around their necks in my face as they order.

When I started this job I’d never thought I would be giving directions so often. It’s amazing when people come in and don’t know where they are. They come in and ask me what town they are in. I always feel like asking them, “How did you get here?” People sometimes ask where competitors are located or ask for food that are our competitors serve. If they would read the menu boards in front of them they would know what we have to offer.

I hope people will learn to be more considerate of the employee’s serving them at restaurants. Customers should be considerate of the employees and behave appropriately and in a respectful manner. I know from my personal experience that I enjoy being treated as a person not an object to be manipulated. People should be grateful to live in an affluent society where they have the luxury of buying food for a relatively low cost.