Customers should be gracious towards service staff

I refer to the Sunday Life! Report “I am the customer, I have the right to call you stupid” (May 4). Ungracious customer behavior spoils image of the service industry as service staff are treated badly by customers. There is a need for better etiquette and common courtesy by customers. It is hard to give good service too when a customer behavior is questionable.

Establishments should protect their staff who are the subject of profanities by customers and that the management reserves the right to ask the customers to leave. Service staff should not run errands for customers as it is not in their job description and that they should focus on quality serving of customers instead. The management needs to do more in protecting their staff from verbal abuse by customers.

Customers also need to understand that prices are fixed and that at reputable establishments, haggling is not possible. They also need to be more forgiving to service staffs that have to cope with the running of the daily operations and also satisfying the customer’s expectations.

The management should give more recognition to staff that provide good experiences for customers to change the perception that service staff are essential and should not be viewed as a lowly job. Demanding customers would also add to more staff resigning and this will affect the service industry via labour crunch.

Service staff at establishments needs to be train to handle ungracious customers politely and professionally in turning them away if their behavior is too extreme. Even though service is a reciprocal relationship, I think that customers should respect service staff that tries their best in accommodating requests and orders of the customers. A simple “Thank You” or positive feedback would make service staff feel good about their service and they will continue to better their standards and recognise their efforts in a competitive industry.

I hope that customers treat service staff with respect and be gracious towards them. Customers also need to understand the rules and regulations in an establishment and adhere to them. This will help in providing better and efficient service to customers. A positive customer and service staff relationship to maintain the quality of standards in the service industry and to avoid labour strains.

DARREN CHAN

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