Do you report neglect and/or incompetence, or exceptional performance, when not shopping?

I recently took my grandson out to a non shop dinner at a semi-upscale restaurant and was on the horns of a dilemma when several negative events occurred. First of all, part of my grandson's order was botched up, causing a delay. Then the soup I had ordered was delivered barely even lukewarm. Finally, my grandson asked for soy sauce which was brought in a glass container with a small metal spout and, when he used it, found that it contained a revolting number of dead gnats!
I called the server who took the container and reappeared in a few minutes to tell us that she had poured out about a third of it and did not see any more gnats. I sat there, stunned and open mouthed as she put the container back on the table and went her way.
Needless to say, we left.
My dilemma was: Since this was not a shop, do I report it or let it slide? I opted to report it.
I sent an e-mail to their corporate headquarters detailing the events and the next day heard back from the regional supervisor. She first of all thanked me for reporting, saying that if I hadn't sent the e-mail they would never have known because the event had not been reported. She then stated that she would be on scene next day to do some serious training and retraining. Finally, she informed me that she was sending two $50.00 meal credits (one for me, one for my grandson).
I thanked her and took the whole family out to dinner a few days later at a different location (considerably more than the $100.00!). Unfortunately, no one was particularly impressed. Nothing bad, just uninspired, so I am unlikely to return.
I did appreciate the prompt response from corporate, however.
I am quick to volunteer positive information to businesses because it is all too easy to zone in on the negative without recognizing the positive.
Could I hear from forum members on their takes on this?

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I definitely do the same as you did. Exceptionally good -- unacceptably bad. I've done that my
entire life.
I would email corporate if local management fails. I hope you asked for a manager to notify why you're leaving without paying, I know I'd not want to pay for food that was obviously a potential health risk.

My posts are solely based on my opinions and for my entertainment, contact a professional if you need real advice.

When you get in debt you become a slave. - Andrew Jackson
I have a "restaurant complaint" letter saved on my computer as a template. And use it. Often. I simply refuse to put up with poor service, or worse. Gnats in the soy sauce would have sent me to the on-duty manager and to the mailbox with a letter!

I don't like poor service in any situation, but it seems to me that most of my bad experiences are in restaurants. Or maybe I'm just more sensitive to the issue because I was a waitress in my younger days.

If restaurant management replies with an apology, not even a gift card (although most have), I'll try the place again. But if they ignore my letter or e-mail, I give them a bad review on Trip Advisor or other forum.

I learn something new every day, but not everyday!
I've learned to never trust spell-check or my phone's auto-fill feature.
I always make a point to comment to the manager or above for great service, food, etc. I will also send a letter to the president or CEO when the service, food, etc, is much below par. I haven't always had a great experience when informing the local manager about a poor experience.

Recently I wrote a restaurant CEO about very poor service at a restaurant that I had eaten at for the first time. I was sent a gift card and invited to try the restaurant again. The repeat meal and service were both really great. My husband and I are now regulars at this particular eatery.
For me, there are three things I report.

1) Exceptionally good service.
2) Exceptionally bad service.
3) My favorite: When I think a CSR needs a pat on the back. For example, I may be the fourth customer in the a grocery store line. The cashier is doing great with greeting, thanking, and asking for rewards cards, only to have customers not responding in any way and just hold out their hands to get a receipt or be obsessed with their cell phones. I gladly report how that cashier kept his/her smile and game face on even when none of the other customers seemed to care. I tend to do this for teenagers/college student cashiers as they are at an impressionable age for work ethic habits.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/17/2015 04:01AM by tcurione.
I was not on a shop when I wandered into a store that was dirty, disorganized, understocked and with rude staff. I went directly to corporate. About three weeks later I got a call from the store manager who was an excuse-a-minute kid. After listening for a while, I got my turn and pointed out that two employees not showing up that day could not possibly account for floors that were grossly dirty even under displays, nor could it possibly be the responsibility of those two who didn't show up to do all the restocking and putting stuff back on proper shelves--especially since there were five employees leaning on an empty cart whining about something. There was dead silence on the other end of the phone and then she came back and said, "Yes, it is awful. I just don't know what to do." I pointed out that SHE was the manager. SHE needed to take the leadership to make the cleaning crew come back when they did a half ass job. SHE needed to take the leadership to assign two people to work together on each aisle clearing, wiping down and reorganizing shelves and getting them restocked. SHE needed to be a presence on the floor to encourage staff or order staff to get it done and if they didn't, hire employees who would. I don't know if she found her spinal column or whether corporate found someone who did have a backbone, but there has been significant improvement at the store.
I do this all the time. My first job was fast food, and I was promoted to a management position at the age of 17. I made a policy then and there to always say something if it is beyond bad and to always take the time to compliment people if they are exceptional. I've waited 15 minutes for a manager just so I can say something nice about someone. I also have a rule that no matter how upset I am about a bad experience that I am polite and calm with the manager and explain what happened fully. Thursday I went to Sprouts grocery store for some groceries. In the parking lot a mother was putting groceries in her car and left her toddler in the cart. The cart started to roll away and was picking up speed and heading for traffic. The courtesy clerk that was collecting carts dropped everything she was doing and ran like hell to save that kid from traffic. When I was checking out I made sure to ask politely for a manager and let them know what I had witnessed outside.

Silver certified for 11 years and happily shopping Arizona!
I went to a convenience store years ago and bought the last frozen pizza in the merchandiser and it was a bit stuck in ice but I managed to pull it out of the case. I took it home and cooked it. I noticed it was soggy (crust) prior to cooking but thought it was because it was over-iced. I cooked it and it tasted awful. I wrote the company and explained what happened. They wrote me back and said to be on the look out for a surprise. A few weeks later a delivery truck came and gave me a case of pizza! My kids loved it smiling smiley
Sorry, I should have mentioned that I paid for the meal.
Stupid? Perhaps, but I didn't want any static as I was leaving. At that point I was so mad that I might have gone off on anyone who tried to hassle me. That would have been counterproductive to getting heard on my complaint.
I sure as heck would not have paid for anything during the visit.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
i WOULd have taken pic of gnats in soy sauce & reported them to department of health. Some fines hitting their pockets would make more of an impression.
Yeah, I do report the good and the nasty, even if it isn't a shop.

I was a travel consultant for years. I regularly sent letters or found how to report when the representatives did it right or wrong. I don't have issues if I'm not shopping the particular business to tell them...the good, the bad and the ugly

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!
I don't recall the last time I've reported incompetent or exceptional performance while not mystery shopping. I have thought about contacting someone at Dunkin Donuts and asking them why the hell they print 'Please recycle' on so many of their wrappers, bags, and cups, yet I've never seen a recycling bin at one of their stores. But that's another issue.

The last time I remember seeing something that should be reported was the shouting match I witnessed between a Miami Subs manager and a homeless man at the front counter of a MS restaurant last fall. I'm talking f-bombs and most other accompanying words. I was sitting very close to this scene, and I felt uncomfortable not doing or saying something especially since the man had no qualms continually yelling 'F'ing c&*%!' at the manager from a few feet away. So, I got up and broke up their little spat.

This guy was out of line, but so was the manager. Instead of diffusing the situation, she intensified it in ghetto fashion. No matter how nasty that guy was, she shouldn't have cussed back at him (repeatedly). Unfortunately, this is somewhat symbolic of Miami Subs, imo. They upgraded their menu and the physical locations of their stores, but they didn't do anything about upgrading the employees.

Other than that, though, I just really haven't seen or experienced anything which was disturbing in quite some time.

I don't think there are any Russians / And there ain't no Yanks
Just corporate criminals\ / Playin' with tanks
One of the worst experiences I've ever had was at a rental car in Columbus, OH. My partner and I had flown in last minute because my mother-in-law fell extremely ill and wasn't expected to make it much longer. We booked last minute flights that got us into Columbus around midnight and then I had a two hour drive into Cincinnati. We made our way to the rental counter and the guy who helped me printed out a contract with a price contrary to what I had on my confirmation. I pointed that out to him and he "looked into it" on his computer before telling me that that was the "estimated" amount and that I would only be charged what was on the confirmation. I was skeptical, but I was also exhausted and just wanted to get on the road, so I wrote what he told me on the contract, along with the price from the confirmation, and signed it.

Fast forward to the return and I'm being charged the higher price. So I go inside to talk to the manager who I went back and forth with for at least 15 minutes. He's telling me that I had received a mid-size car at the compact price (or some such comparison) and I told him that I hadn't asked for an upgrade, I hadn't been asked if I wanted an upgrade and if they didn't have the vehicle I reserved, that was their problem not mine. Back and forth, back and forth. Finally he tells me, "How about I split the difference?" I look him square in the eye and tell him, "I reserved this car, at this price and this is what I'm paying." He eventually relents, telling me, "Well, I'll do it this time, but I won't do it again." I smile at him and tell him, "That's fine because there won't be a next time."

The next night, after we had returned from Ohio, we got the call that she had passed away, so I was off to book another set of travel arrangements to get us out there for the funeral. I was sure to skip said car rental company. But upon my return from that trip, I found a letter in my mailbox from the company telling me that my car had been excessively dirty and they were charging me a $70 cleaning fee.

I sent a prompt e-mail to the person listed on the e-mail, explained to them everything that happened and told him he had 48 hours to reverse the charge before I disputed it, contacted BBB and the Ohio Attorney General to report the location's bait-and-switch tactics. The charge was promptly reversed.

I had another series of bad experiences with a different car rental company in Las Vegas. When it finally came to a head and I was completely fed up, I contacted corporate. They ended up sending me $30 in gift certificates. Unfortunately, I lost them in my move only to find them about a week ago...but they expire at the end of this month so I sent them to a friend who'd be renting through them. Lol.

And then I had another good one with an appliance retailer. I bought a washer/dryer set for a rental property I owned. The first set they delivered, the washer was broken, so I had to have them deliver me a new one. When they call me that they're at the house, I answer the door and find no one, only to find out that they were attempting to deliver it to my billing address instead of my delivery address. They refused to drive the 3 miles down the road to the correct address, at which point I completely lost it on the guy on the phone. He offered me a $25 gift card for my trouble; I think my exact words to him were, "You can take that gift card and shove it up your @$$ because I will never be shopping at your store again!" So we reschedule delivery for another day and they deliver to me ANOTHER broken washer, at which point I went to the store, talked to the manager and told him that they were going to take both the broken washer and the dryer back and I would shop somewhere more competent. More fighting ensued because I was done scheduling pick-ups and drop-offs around their schedule and told them I would be at my house at 8am on Saturday and if they weren't there to pick it up at that time, then I was rolling it out to the curb and it would be their problem.

Shopping central Arizona.
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