Personal Thoughts and Comments

Posted by at 13 April, at 18 : 37 PM Print

My observations in one of the Top 12 Largest Coffee Chains in the World

While waiting for a relative’s physical therapy session to end, I visited one of the largest coffee chains stores to “kill” about an hour. This month’s column is a record of my observations.

The store had about 15 tables; most of the tables had one or two people; some tables had 3 people; in my table I was alone. After spending some time “playing” with my smart phone, I decided to record my observations. Hence, I observed that the people entering the store were going directly to the counter / display; behind the counter there were two people, presentable, with uniforms on and seemingly in good mood. They were taking the orders, receiving payment, filling out the orders and delivering the ordered items to the clients. The people were picking up their ordered items and were taking a seat either in a counter or at a table.

About 40% of the customers were either on laptops or on smart phones; in a couple of tables, one person was working on his laptop while at the same time was showing results on the screen to his friend, or explaining displayed information to them. Some people were sitting quietly enjoying their order. I noticed some people were carrying out serious conversations. I also noticed that during my almost an hour stay there, I saw no employee of the store on the floor’ it seemed that the store was in some kind of “auto pilot”.

The question is: Why am I recording my observations? One reason is that I needed to write something for this month’s column; no, I am just kidding. The main reason is because I learned something about the store’s policy or “model” of operation that I needed to pass it on to you all. Let me explain what I learned:

  1.  When people enter the store to place their order, be polite, smile and provide the customer with what they order which must be in high quality
  2. When people take their seats, leave them alone; if they need something they will approach the counter / display and ask

In closing, I am contrasting this model of leaving the customer alone with the other model that we are all familiar with: a server is constantly looking over the shoulder of the client and constantly approaches the customer asking if everything is ok. I am certain that both models are worthwhile and what model you need to follow depends on the kind of operation you have. It is obvious that the two models of operation address different audiences. I must admit however that I enjoyed the model of leaving the customer alone during my stay there.

Should you wish to share news about your business with others, we are encouraging you to do so; please do not hesitate to call or e-mail: Peter J Poulopoulos, MBA Managing Real Estate Broker Licensed in Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin REALPOUL REALTY “Commerce with Morality™” 2731 W Touhy Ave Chicago, IL 60645 Phone: 773 743-2100 E-mail: visit us at:


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