I’m a very positive guy. So it|Therefore it saddens me that lots of of my customer service observations give attention to bad examples and what not to do. Since I’d rather find and talk about types of fabulous customer service, it’s become my passion in life to work towards a lot of people believing that customer care in general is quite good (the opposite is now true). Then I’d see great customer support everywhere!

For those who don’t know or don’t live in a state blessed with https://www.elpolloloco.com/our-food/, they have the best flame broiled chicken on the planet. I’ve been enjoying it for pretty much two decades.

However, their customer service varies wildly from store-to-store. Find the wrong store and you might want to strangle an employee or two. Some workers forget to grasp even the most rudimentary customer service principles.

And after many years of searching, I finally found the best el Pollo Loco franchise. It’s just a little farther far from my house, but it’s worth venturing out of my way to get good service. I even wrote the company and told the district manager how great this store was, especially compared to other branches. Things have been going great, they knew me there, and I loved eating their chicken. Unfortunately, I needed an experience yesterday which has got me to reevaluate these positive feelings.

So, yesterday evening I wanted some Pollo Loco chicken for dinner after a late movie. I called my personal favorite location, using the best service around town, to place a takeout order. I bought through after the phone rang for almost 2 minutes. A staff member breathlessly answered the phone and then asked basically if i could hold. “Sure!” I responded. Then, I waited, and waited, and waited.

I drove 8 miles in LA traffic, arrived at the shop, and walked together with the telephone still ringing. I required to speak to the manager. He was on the register. I assumed they had just forgotten me, which had been not true. That they had decided to not answer my call because they were busy. Therefore they allow me to sit, and sit, and sit down on hold.

Since they knew me, I asked them should they could view the phone was on hold. Yup. Oooops. I told them it was me, and that I had been on hold for almost 10 minutes. What did the girl do? She walked over to the telephone and hung it up. Not a word of apology. After speaking to the employee, I visited the end in the line to wait my choose talk to the manager. As I was in line, I was able to notice that the staff member as well as the manager were referring to the phone call, my wait, and the whole mess.

I arrive at the front of the line and also the manager says in my opinion, “Hello, how are you?” Seriously?! He already knew I used to be upset, yet he didn’t make his first words “I am so sorry for the mess.”

I told him the entire story, in particular the part about being hung up on without a word of apology. He turns to the one who hung on me, says something, and she comes over and apologizes. He gives me some lame excuses about not understanding regarding the call, blah, blah, blah. It never occurs to him to apologize, he just denies responsibility for that actions of his troops.

I ask the manager why his employee waited to apologize until he told her to. And, this gets ugly. He lies in my opinion. He says she doesn’t speak English very well therefore she didn’t say anything. Which doesn’t make sense, she did a bbquiq job speaking to me and apologizing once he’d told her to.

Sorry to say, I was angry and left without my chicken and my appetite.

Now, here is the moral in the story. Once you screw up, just apologize. Then apologize again. Everyone. On a regular basis. Be responsible for annoying a fantastic, el Pollo Loco catering menu. You screwed up. So does everyone. Just apologize and then make a move extra to really make it right. In this case, buy me some chicken, deliver a totally free coupon, or something else to make it right. Chicken and rice costs him a nickel. My company may be worth about $1000 a year, minimum. Is saving that biz worth an apology as well as a little chicken? Yes.