IHOP Done Right
Good Day Everyone! Your good ol’ faithful admin here to give Mr. Ydir the day off. I know, I know… you’d all rather be reading this post imagining a wonderfully delightful British accent. Only to be disappointed with the drawl of an American of the Southern variety. (Continue to pretend that this is being spoken in your head by a wonderful British gentleman. Speaking with a British dialect adds 30 points to your I.Q. That’s a fact. Google it. 😉 ) Anyway… on to the task at hand….
February 28th, 2012 was evidently National Pancake Day here in the United States. (Leave it to us “Uh-mericans” to devote a “holiday” to a breakfast dish.) Ahhh….pancakes. The very mention of the dish makes my mouth water. Call them what you will; pancakes…. flapjacks….or hot cakes, these wonderful treats are good for any time of the day. Here in the States, we occasionally enjoy “breakfast for dinner,” which is what happened Tuesday night. We have a delightful restaurant chain here is the US called IHOP (formerly the International House of Pancakes…you can see why they shortened it). Well, they decided to take advantage of National Pancake Day (seems they probably have a monopoly on this particular holiday) and raise a bit of money for the Children’s Miracle Network. The way they went about doing this was to give one Short Stack of Pancakes (3 pancakes) to each person dining for FREE. All they ask in return was that you leave a donation for the CMN. WOW! When we arrived at the restaurant, it looked as if the whole town had come out for “breakfast for dinner” or “brinner” as we’ll call it. It was unbelievably crowded! And did I mention that we live in a college town? That being said, if there is ever “free” food anywhere in a 10 mile radius, you can bet the college campus and cafeteria will be empty. Can you imagine how much money they are raising for Children’s Hospitals? Mind blowing!
And as busy as they were, they provided fantastic service! Our server, Rebecca, was one of the best I have ever experienced. I may have said it before on this blog, but I used to wait tables. So, I know how hard of a job it is. Not to mention how hard it is when the whole town (practically) is dining in one place. But that did not get Rebecca down. Every time we saw her, she had a huge smile on her face. She actually made me feel like I was a guest in her home and she was playing the role of the perfect hostess. Refilling drinks, providing silverware, taking orders and everything else. Also there were 4 children under the age of 6 at our table and that didn’t phase Rebecca. I have very rarely experienced such a wonderful server.
At the end of my meal, I asked if Rebecca would bring the manager to our table. Side note: I love doing this. I never tell the server why I want to talk to the manager, just that I want to talk to the manager. It’s fun because the server/employee immediately starts thinking, “Oh my goodness, what did I do?” You see, very, VERY rarely does someone ask to speak to the manager about a good experience. (BTW – one of the goals of this blog is to change that.) Is it considered a bit of trickery? Maybe. But the greater the swing from terror to pure joy is a wonderful trip to take at times. So, back to our interaction. Rebecca, still with the smile on her face, returns with the manager. I proceed to gush to the manager about how wonderful of a job that Rebecca has done. Stating that it can’t be easy to provide such outstanding service in the middle of what was probably the busiest day of the year. During these interactions, I try very hard to make sure that the server can hear the praise. And you can immediately see the tension of the “Oh my goodness” moment float away. The manager (as is with every case) was blown away to hear such positive comments. You could tell that she, too, was bracing for a negative comment.
Let me say again; this is one of my absolute favorite things to do. Most of the people I’ve ever met in the food service industry seldom receive good feedback. It is such a wonderful gift to be able to brag on them at times. Don’t believe me? Try it yourself.
So, IHOP, if you are reading this, you AND Rebecca in your Searcy, AR store are Doing It Right!
P.S. I am nicknaming this post my “parenthetical post.” Went a little crazy with them…. 🙂