April 20, 2008

Hurry Up and Wait

Filed under: Marketing Philosophy — Robert John Ed @ 5:51 pm

I do my laundry once every two weeks on the weekends. While my garb spins, I usually grab a bite to eat at the Soho Cafe, Uptown Diner or Chipotle next door.

Today, I walked over to Chipotle and attempted to walk in. The doors were locked. It was 11:02 by my watch and Chipotle states they are open at 11. I sat down outside on their metal chairs. Another patron came up and attempted to go in. I warned her it wasn’t open and she sat with me. Two young gentleman strolled up and saw that we were waiting. They sat down as well. Yet another young man came up and stood next to us waiting.

That’s five customers dutifully waiting for three minutes.

The doors opened.

We all ordered our food.

This is an anomaly. Customers don’t line up and wait. They go somewhere else. They realize that the workers of this store could easily see them in plain view sitting outside waiting; they get angry with the lack of human empathy and they leave for another burrito joint. Some don’t come back.

Here’s the moral: every customer should be treated as though you want to keep them around for life. Chipotle not only should have had their doors open at 11 as is stated on the door, they should have rushed to open up the door before that time when they saw just one person waiting…not five.


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