A couple of weeks ago, the kids and I were out running errands. I drove through a fast food hamburger restaurant. I placed my order at the speaker, and listened as it was repeated. I then drove around and paid for the order. The cashier handed me two drinks. I told her that there should be three drinks. She informed me that I only ordered two. I checked the ticket... yes, there it was 3 drinks. So I tried to hand the ticket back to her for her to confirm. She wouldn't take the ticket, but continued to argue that I only ordered 2 drinks. This went on in circles for a couple of minutes. (Please keep in mind, this was during the noon hour... traffic was backing up.) Finally, I realized that she was not going to look at the ticket... and she was not going to concede that she was wrong, so in a very sassy manner, with my finger in the air circling toward the kids and myself, and then holding up three fingers, I said, "There are three of us, we NEED THREE DRINKS!" (Maybe not my finest moment, but it HAS made us laugh several times since.) She looked shocked, and said, "What is the third drink?" I told her, and thought, okay we can finish up and leave...
Oh ... no! I noticed that my drink was marked DR. Pepper. I had ordered a Coke. So, I tried to hand it back and she informed me that she had just marked it wrong. Being a little leery, and a lot weary by this point, I asked if she was sure. She said yes, so I kept the drink. We still had not got our food. I promise, it was not a complicated order... 2 cheeseburgers and 1 oder of chicken strips. So, while we wait I put my straw in the drink and hesitantly try it. Yes, it was Coke... good... but the cashier flings the drive thru window open and said not so politely, "I TOLD YOU IT WAS COKE." Refraining from the urge to climb through the window and teach her a few manners... after all, my kids were watching ... I just smiled and nodded.
AND we are STILL waiting for our food, AND the line behind us is steadily growing longer. Finally, after about 10 minutes (no exaggeration), she opens the window and asks me to pull around to the other side to wait for my food. REALLY?!?!?!?! Exasperated, I asked, in a not so nice manner, "Why?" She informed me that chicken strips take 7 minutes to cook. (remember, it has been 10 minutes) I didn't speak, I just pulled around. However, as soon as the window was up, the kids and I were all yelling about the rudeness... the length of time... and, yea, again, the rudeness. Finally, after a total wait of at least 15 minutes, the cashier walked our food out to us. I tried smiling... not sure how sincere it was, but I did try, and thanked her for our food."
So, as we are eating our lunch and continuing our errands, we have a discussion about all the things the cashier should have done if she were offering true customer service. It did turn into a good teaching moment... and a good laugh as we replayed the story for Jason to hear.
Sadly, this instance of poor service is not the only one around. It seems more and more common for employees, in any service industry, to be rude, unhelpful, and sometimes offensive toward customers. Now please keep in mind, there are still some very good employees out there, and for those, I give my gratitude.
So what has brought about this trend of poor service? And lets face it, it is not just in the service industry, it is in life. In my opinion, it is the shift away from traditional Christian values. Jesus set the example for us to serve others.
John 13:12-17(NKJV) So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.Instead of looking for ways to serve others, we EXPECT others to serve us. We are living in a "What's in it for me?" ... "I want it my way" ... "It just feels right." ... type of society. If we are always looking for self fulfillment, then we are going to miss out on the blessings promised by Jesus -> "If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them."
So, what can we do? Well first of all, when we are in a position to serve others, do it well. Serve cheerfully, and allow others to see Christ in us. When we are not in that position, look for ways that we can serve others. As Christians, we should know, it is not all about us... It IS all about Christ.
We are called to serve others. "So whatever we do, do it all to the glory of God."