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Was this an odd response?

Was this an odd response?

Old Apr 9, 17, 5:49 pm
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Was this an odd response?

I've been watching the menu on-line for a certain restaurant. It hasn't changed in months. I "know" that the on-line menu is not verbatim of what will be served at the time we go, but it's often a good representation.

This menu was very Fall/Winter heavy - "autumn" vegetables, root vegetables, etc.

I emailed the contact number (it is a "celebrity" chef who has a few restaurants, so this was a general/corporate e-mail), asking how often the menu changed and since the one on-line was clearly an autumn menu, when would the Spring menu be posted (since it is now April)?

The response: "why don't you call the restaurant and ask them?"

Am I wrong to find this odd...shouldn't the response have been "thank you for bringing this to our attention...we will let that restaurant know the website needs to be updated"...
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Old Apr 9, 17, 5:54 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
I've been watching the menu on-line for a certain restaurant. It hasn't changed in months. I "know" that the on-line menu is not verbatim of what will be served at the time we go, but it's often a good representation.

This menu was very Fall/Winter heavy - "autumn" vegetables, root vegetables, etc.

I emailed the contact number (it is a "celebrity" chef who has a few restaurants, so this was a general/corporate e-mail), asking how often the menu changed and since the one on-line was clearly an autumn menu, when would the Spring menu be posted (since it is now April)?

The response: "why don't you call the restaurant and ask them?"

Am I wrong to find this odd...shouldn't the response have been "thank you for bringing this to our attention...we will let that restaurant know the website needs to be updated"...
I suppose it depends on whether you were making an observation about their website or seeking information about what was actually being served. Pretty clear they assumed the latter
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Old Apr 9, 17, 6:05 pm
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Yes, I was seeking new information.

Why should I, as a customer, have to call to tell them they need to update their website?

I don't want to sit on the phone and be "read" the Spring menu, I want to see it.
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Old Apr 9, 17, 11:38 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
I emailed the contact number (it is a "celebrity" chef who has a few restaurants, so this was a general/corporate e-mail), asking how often the menu changed and since the one on-line was clearly an autumn menu, when would the Spring menu be posted (since it is now April)?

The response: "why don't you call the restaurant and ask them?"

Am I wrong to find this odd...shouldn't the response have been "thank you for bringing this to our attention...we will let that restaurant know the website needs to be updated"...
That response strikes me as rather rude and definitely not customer friendly. Makes me wonder how they treat customers in the restaurant.
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Old Apr 9, 17, 11:44 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post

The response: "why don't you call the restaurant and ask them?"

Makes me wonder if the site where you found the contact info for the restaurant, isn't actually the restaurant's website.
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Old Apr 10, 17, 6:39 am
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Originally Posted by jerry305 View Post
Makes me wonder if the site where you found the contact info for the restaurant, isn't actually the restaurant's website.
that is what I was thinking as well
Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
I've been watching the menu on-line for a certain restaurant.
Can you confirm that it is indeed a website run by the restaurant themselves? (i.e. OpenTable & many other restaurant sites will post a menu of the restaurant but that info can be stale)
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Old Apr 10, 17, 8:10 am
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Yes it was to/from the restaurant group (he owns several). And while they did tell me to call the restaurant and ask myself, they did say it a little nicer than I might have implied.

I wrote back saying I really did not want to bother the restaurant to discuss a Spring menu, is there any way they could give them a nudge to update their website?...we'll see if I hear back.
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Old Apr 10, 17, 5:09 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
Yes it was to/from the restaurant group (he owns several). And while they did tell me to call the restaurant and ask myself, they did say it a little nicer than I might have implied.

I wrote back saying I really did not want to bother the restaurant to discuss a Spring menu, is there any way they could give them a nudge to update their website?...we'll see if I hear back.
so to be clear, you're willing to send a couple of emails and post in a web site, but not make a phone call?
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Old Apr 10, 17, 8:35 pm
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Seriously? You'd follow their suggestion to call the restaurant and ask them to read me their Spring menu? Wouldn't you just love a phone call like that if you worked there and were in the middle of dinner service, or maybe before they opened while they were setting up? E-mails can be answered at the recipient's leisure when it is convenient for them.
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Old Apr 10, 17, 9:39 pm
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This stopped being a productive conversation.
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Old Apr 10, 17, 10:38 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
Seriously? You'd follow their suggestion to call the restaurant and ask them to read me their Spring menu? Wouldn't you just love a phone call like that if you worked there and were in the middle of dinner service, or maybe before they opened while they were setting up? E-mails can be answered at the recipient's leisure when it is convenient for them.
"is your website menu current? If not, would you mind emailing me a copy? If that's not possible, can you just tell me a few highlights or some of your favorites?"
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Old Apr 10, 17, 10:44 pm
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post
Seriously? You'd follow their suggestion to call the restaurant and ask them to read me their Spring menu? Wouldn't you just love a phone call like that if you worked there and were in the middle of dinner service, or maybe before they opened while they were setting up? E-mails can be answered at the recipient's leisure when it is convenient for them.
If the people at the central office don't have the menu, they don't have the menu. I consider the answer they gave you an example of good customer service because it is both constructive and definite: "Please call the restaurant for current information." What else do you want them to say? "We do not have that information and don't know when we'll get it"? That's negative, vague, and unhelpful.
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Old Apr 10, 17, 11:48 pm
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Originally Posted by darthbimmer View Post
If the people at the central office don't have the menu, they don't have the menu.
I disagree with your conclusion. Celebrity chef - small restaurant group - do you really think each restaurant has their own webmaster? I would suspect that each restaurant's menu changes have to be approved by the big shot whose name is on the group, and thus new menus would come from the central office and not the individual restaurant.

Originally Posted by darthbimmer View Post
I consider the answer they gave you an example of good customer service because it is both constructive and definite: "Please call the restaurant for current information." What else do you want them to say? "We do not have that information and don't know when we'll get it"? That's negative, vague, and unhelpful.
Again, I disagree. Good customer service would be "We'll get that for you and send it in an email."

FWIW I email a lot of restaurants because of food allergies - no point in going someplace where you won't be able to eat, so I check in advance. 95% of the time the useful response comes from the main office, not the individual location.
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Old Apr 11, 17, 11:21 am
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Originally Posted by thelark View Post
so to be clear, you're willing to send a couple of emails and post in a web site, but not make a phone call?
I don't know if you heard of terms like "millenials" but yes, there are many people like that. And if you run a business you'd know.

Originally Posted by darthbimmer View Post
If the people at the central office don't have the menu, they don't have the menu. I consider the answer they gave you an example of good customer service because it is both constructive and definite: "Please call the restaurant for current information." What else do you want them to say? "We do not have that information and don't know when we'll get it"? That's negative, vague, and unhelpful.
This would be a good answer:
" I am sorry the website has not been updated with the new menu. I know our customers are eager to see what is new, and we will be contacting the staff to ensure the information is updated. I am very sorry for your inconvenience."

I guess you think it is good customer service because you don't expect them to actually do any work for the customer. Good customer service is attending to all the customer's explicitly stated needs, and then trying to anticipate what else they want and to provide for those as well.

Last edited by iluv2fly; Apr 12, 17 at 9:12 am Reason: merge
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Old Apr 11, 17, 11:31 am
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Originally Posted by s0ssos View Post
This would be a good answer:
" I am sorry the website has not been updated with the new menu. I know our customers are eager to see what is new, and we will be contacting the staff to ensure the information is updated. I am very sorry for your inconvenience."

I guess you think it is good customer service because you don't expect them to actually do any work for the customer. Good customer service is attending to all the customer's explicitly stated needs, and then trying to anticipate what else they want and to provide for those as well.
Actually if what I wanted to know is what's on the menu tonight, to me, that would be a completely non communicative answer. However, it would earn a high grade in Corporate Public Relations 301.
I would absolutely prefer "Sorry, we don't have that information but the restaurant itself can certainly help you. Here's their number..."
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