clbent04

Restaurants Cleaning While You Eat

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I don't have a problem with restaurants cleaning while you eat (generally speaking), but I've been somewhat confounded recently by the the lack of common sense some people have. 

Example #1 - Two weeks ago, my wife, 2-year old and I are eating at an Italian place when a server comes out with an extended duster and starts dusting the ceiling vents directly over the tables where people are eating.  Luckily he didn't come to our section, but from where we were sitting I could see all the dust that was disturbed visibly falling in the air and settling onto peoples' food. The people sitting in the areas where he was cleaning didn't seem happy about it either.

Example #2- Yesterday I'm in Costco getting that sweet $1.50 hot dog and soda special. I'm sitting down at my table when a Costco employee with a broom and dust bin comes along. She sweeps around my area and then wants to clean the area around my feet. I have to lift my legs to avoid the path of broom as she says, "Excuse me."  

I know, real 1st world problems. But how hard is it to wait till people have left their tables before you start cleaning that area?

Edited by clbent04

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#1 - I may have asked the individual to not do that.  I understand some managers try to tell their employees to be constantly busy and clean if nothing else, but I would probably ask them to avoid dusting stuff over my food.

#2 - I probably would not have a problem with someone who did that.  It is a tad rude and they may be able to do better but once again, they are probably trying to do as told and keep the area clean.  I've had it done to me (but not at Costco) and simply acquiesced. 

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8 hours ago, clbent04 said:

I don't have a problem with restaurants cleaning while you eat (generally speaking), but I've been somewhat confounded recently by the the lack of common sense some people have. 

Example #1 - Two weeks ago, my wife, 2-year old and I are eating at an Italian place when a server comes out with an extended duster and starts dusting the ceiling vents directly over the tables where people are eating.  Luckily he didn't come to our section, but from where we were sitting I could see all the dust that was disturbed visibly falling in the air and settling onto peoples' food. The people sitting in the areas where he was cleaning didn't seem happy about it either.

Example #2- Yesterday I'm in Costco getting that sweet $1.50 hot dog and soda special. I'm sitting down at my table when a Costco employee with a broom and dust bin comes along. She sweeps around my area and then wants to clean the area around my feet. I have to lift my legs to avoid the path of broom as she says, "Excuse me."  

I know, real 1st world problems. But how hard is it to wait till people have left their tables before you start cleaning?

That's your hint not to come 5 minutes before they close. It's a jerk move.

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9 hours ago, clbent04 said:

I don't have a problem with restaurants cleaning while you eat (generally speaking), but I've been somewhat confounded recently by the the lack of common sense some people have. 

Example #1 - Two weeks ago, my wife, 2-year old and I are eating at an Italian place when a server comes out with an extended duster and starts dusting the ceiling vents directly over the tables where people are eating.  Luckily he didn't come to our section, but from where we were sitting I could see all the dust that was disturbed visibly falling in the air and settling onto peoples' food. The people sitting in the areas where he was cleaning didn't seem happy about it either.

Example #2- Yesterday I'm in Costco getting that sweet $1.50 hot dog and soda special. I'm sitting down at my table when a Costco employee with a broom and dust bin comes along. She sweeps around my area and then wants to clean the area around my feet. I have to lift my legs to avoid the path of broom as she says, "Excuse me."  

I know, real 1st world problems. But how hard is it to wait till people have left their tables before you start cleaning?

I would have a problem with number 1 and I would say something about it if he was cleaning the ceilling near my table, although I would be polite about it. Sometimes employees are just following orders, and a manager might have told him to get it done now without thinking.

Number 2 wouldn't bother me, that sounds more like a conscientious employee trying to get her job done, and she did say excuse me. Plus, I've worked in fast food, and you clean whenever you get a minute in between waves or it doesn't get done.

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1 hour ago, Tyme said:

That's your hint not to come 5 minutes before they close. It's a jerk move.

Another quality response by @Tyme.

Both instances were around 1pm in the middle of their open business hours.

Edited by clbent04

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1 hour ago, anatess2 said:

In the Philippines, clearing your table before you leave the table is interpreted as "we want you to leave".  So what would happen is the customers will leave and they will never come back.

Maybe the mods can use that as a warning to users who are about to get banned from this website.

”YOUR TABLE IS ABOUT TO BE CLEARED, maraming salamat :P

Edited by clbent04

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The ones who complain are also the same ones who usually come five minutes before close. I can bet money on the fact that 9 times out of 10 the customer complaining about cleaning comes in five minutes before closing. Ten out of ten people who complain will always find something to complain about. It might behoove you to recognize in your wanton criticism of restaurants that at least they're clean.

It says a lot about you that you were so perturbed that you felt the need to post on a random internet forum.

Edited by Tyme

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2 minutes ago, Tyme said:

The ones who complain are also the same ones who usually come five minutes before close. I can bet money on the fact that 9 times out of 10 the customer complaining about cleaning comes in five minutes before closing. Ten out of ten people who complain will always find something to complain about. It might behoove you to recognize in your wanton criticism of restaurants that at least they're clean.

This is silly.

I don't see the relevance of coming in 5 minutes before close.  If you don't want them coming in 5 minutes before close, then you change your posted schedule to close earlier.  Restaurant workers should know that the posted schedule is for the customers and not for the workers.

And saying, "at least they're clean".  What a sad statement.  We PAY for the restaurant to be clean.  If you can't keep a restaurant clean without sacrificing customer service, you need to go into a different line of business.

WORK ETHIC.  LEARN IT.  LIVE IT.

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It's unprofessional to clean a table while customers are eating, but if you go to a restaurant during their down time you need to accept that unprofessional things are more likely to happen. 

When I was growing up the parents of one of my closest friends owned a restaurant. It was an incredibly stressful and difficult way to earn a living.

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10 hours ago, clbent04 said:

Example #1 - Two weeks ago, my wife, 2-year old and I are eating at an Italian place when a server comes out with an extended duster and starts dusting the ceiling vents directly over the tables where people are eating.  Luckily he didn't come to our section, but from where we were sitting I could see all the dust that was disturbed visibly falling in the air and settling onto peoples' food. The people sitting in the areas where he was cleaning didn't seem happy about it either.

This is actually a health violation.  That restaurant could have been sued.

10 hours ago, clbent04 said:

Example #2- Yesterday I'm in Costco getting that sweet $1.50 hot dog and soda special. I'm sitting down at my table when a Costco employee with a broom and dust bin comes along. She sweeps around my area and then wants to clean the area around my feet. I have to lift my legs to avoid the path of broom as she says, "Excuse me."  

I know, real 1st world problems. But how hard is it to wait till people have left their tables before you start cleaning that area?

Perhaps the perspective from the other side would be helpful.  I didn't work at Costco.  But I worked at Disneyland as a sweeper.  If you've ever been there, these are the guys dressed in white slacks and white button up shirt.  We have the sweeping tray with a full height handle, so we don't have to crouch down every time we want to sweep into the tray.

We were supposed to be constantly sweeping our area.  We had to make rounds every 15 minutes.  I was constantly scanning the area for trash and anything to clean up.

Part of our training told us that if someone is sitting on one of the park benches, then we were to simply say "excuse me" as we got closer to their feet.  They lifted their feet or moved out of the way and we swept.  When complete, they would go about their business.  Special care was taken when dealing with the elderly or disabled.

Most of the patrons would comment on how clean the park was kept because of our efforts.  I never heard anyone complain about it.  But I suppose if you had been at Disneyland, you would have been the first one to complain about it.  Yup.  Just you.  No one else.

If we simply "wait till people have left", we'd never get to do whole area in a 15 minute period.  I don't know the sweep period at Costco.  But I'd have a hunch they have a company wide mandated sweeping period which has been calculated by studies of customer turnover rates and degree of messes made.  And you just happened to be there at that time.

Other restaurants have a customer turnover rate that is much lower and they usually don't have the degree of spillage that Costco does.  If Costco did not sweep as frequently as they do, no one would want to eat there because it would be a pig sty.

You're judging solely on your perceived inconvenience.  You're not seeing the other side of the picture.

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2 hours ago, Tyme said:

That's your hint not to come 5 minutes before they close. It's a jerk move.

Why? If they don't want customers coming in at 9:55, why do they leave their doors open until 10:00?

I'd say dusting the ceiling fans all over your customers' food is the jerk move.

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46 minutes ago, NeuroTypical said:

Or, as one guy named it, "The Family Home Evening Food Trough"

The old saying, as adapted to the food service industry, is: "Good. Cheap. Plentiful. Pick two." But in the realm of hot dogs and family pizza, Costco manages an impressive hat trick.

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17 minutes ago, Vort said:

Why? If they don't want customers coming in at 9:55, why do they leave their doors open until 10:00?

Once, on a trip to Canada, I found out that (at least some of) Canada doesn't really think this way.  It was 4:30.  The burger joint was open until 5.  I ordered a burger, and was soundly lectured by the French Canadian cashier about how rude I was ordering a grill item that close to closing time.  And do I really not understand that it takes time to turn off and clean a grill?  And didn't I care that the chef had a family to go home to?  Just another rude American, thinking that people go into business just to serve me.

 

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20 minutes ago, Vort said:

The old saying, as adapted to the food service industry, is: "Good. Cheap. Plentiful. Pick two."

Huh. Dr. N (father of the family who started this business I work for) used to say "Fast, Cheap, Good - pick two."  This is the first time I've heard a variant of it (haven't even heard a repeat of it, which is kinda surprising because it seems to me like a universal truth).

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6 minutes ago, zil said:

Huh. Dr. N (father of the family who started this business I work for) used to say "Fast, Cheap, Good - pick two."  This is the first time I've heard a variant of it (haven't even heard a repeat of it, which is kinda surprising because it seems to me like a universal truth).

Thanks. Now I look all stupid and stuff. Just another day on TH, I guess.

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3 minutes ago, Vort said:

Now I look all stupid and stuff.

Why?  Your variant is just as good as his.

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I actually do try to avoid going to any store five minutes to close if I can avoid it. I don't think there is anything inherantly wrong with it, but I've been where the workers have been. You just want to be done for the day, and then someone wanders in, takes 20 minutes to figure out what they want, and then you're late getting home. I remember when I delivered pizzas for Pizza Hut and someone ordered a pizza at 11:55. Of course she was on the other side of town, did not tip, and paid with a dang check. So I try not to do that to anyone else if I can help it, and if I can't I move as quick as possible so I don't hold them up. 

Edited by Midwest LDS

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1 hour ago, NeuroTypical said:

Once, on a trip to Canada, I found out that (at least some of) Canada doesn't really think this way.  It was 4:30.  The burger joint was open until 5.  I ordered a burger, and was soundly lectured by the French Canadian cashier about how rude I was ordering a grill item that close to closing time.  And do I really not understand that it takes time to turn off and clean a grill?  And didn't I care that the chef had a family to go home to?  Just another rude American, thinking that people go into business just to serve me.

Those inconsiderate angry Canadians!!!

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1 hour ago, Vort said:

The old saying, as adapted to the food service industry, is: "Good. Cheap. Plentiful. Pick two." But in the realm of hot dogs and family pizza, Costco manages an impressive hat trick.

59 minutes ago, zil said:

Huh. Dr. N (father of the family who started this business I work for) used to say "Fast, Cheap, Good - pick two."  This is the first time I've heard a variant of it (haven't even heard a repeat of it, which is kinda surprising because it seems to me like a universal truth).

Project managers say that the criteria are:

  • Scope
  • Schedule
  • Budget

If you want to shorten the schedule, you've got to raise the budget or decrease the scope, and so on.

Cheaper price?  Which do you want to sacrifice? Scope or Schedule?

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