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Hamilton Beach Commercial Blog


The Seven Habits of Restaurant Customer Service Stars

Got a surly server? That’s all right; customers won’t care once they taste their food. That’s what many restaurateurs believe, anyway. Here’s the cold truth: great food can’t make up for less-than-stellar service. Customers complain more about personal service than food quality, Jay Baer found in his research for “Hug Your Haters: How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers.”

“There seems to be an under-emphasis in employee training and employee skills in comparison to the emphasis on product quality,” Baer tells Nation’s Restaurant News.

How can restaurateurs fix this? Look to the best. Here are seven secrets of customer service all-stars. 

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Topics: Featured, Customers, Customer Service, Foodservice

Why Pasadena’s famed Pie ‘N Burger has thrived for more than 50 years

When you call famed Pasadena diner Pie 'N Burger, owner Michael Osborn answers the phone. "I've been here pretty much in the front of the house for over 42 years," he says.

Founded in 1963, Pie 'N Burger is a tiny spot — five tables, 25 counter seats and an open kitchen — on East California Boulevard. Osborn began working for the restaurant in 1972, when he was a pre-dental major at the University of Southern California. "I knew I didn't want to be a dentist," he says. "Beyond that, I didn't know what I wanted to do." The answer, he discovered, was running Pie 'N Burger. Over the years, he gradually took over the business from its original owners and eventually purchased it outright.

The restaurant has thrived since then. Instead of remaining just a quaint local institution, Pie 'N Burger has become nationally known through an appearance on The Travel Channel’s "Burger Land." It's Zagat-rated and consistently wins awards for its food.

(Photo Credit: Pie 'N Burger- For 35 years, Pie 'N Burger's burgers have been made using an old family recipe and prime, freshly ground beef from the same small butcher shop.)

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Topics: Restaurant management, Durability, Classic diners, Spindle mixers, Restaurant longevity, Customer Service

How to go green, save money and pull in customers


The move to a greener operating style is paying off for restaurants of all sizes. Fully 79 percent of consumers prefer dining at certified green restaurants, according to the Green Restaurant Association. "Consumers are a lot more educated now than they used to be," says Michael Oshman, founder of the association. And going green, he says, helps solve two perennial challenges for restaurants: "How can I save money, and how can I bring customers in?"

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Topics: Restaurant management, Durability, Operational efficiency, Green Restaurants, Food, Customer Service

Five ways to keep servers happy

Happier employees are more productive employees. It's not just a truism—it's science. A team of researchers recently found that the happy participants in a study completed 10 to 12 percent more math problems correctly than those who were stressed and unhappy.

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Topics: Waitstaff, Tips, Servers, Restaurant management, Featured, Food, Customer Service

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