One of the things that I bugs me are customers that walk in talking on their cell phone, order while talking on the cell phone, and walk out....still on their cell phone.

What's your irk at work?

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I get this a lot as well. Irritating.

Alex Negranza said:
"Hey there! How you doin?"

"16oz NF SF Hazelnut Cappuccino."

.......

I wish I could somehow save the inner peace that's brought about by the confusion of that customer interaction and their drink order.
nice, thanks for the wisdom. It is interesting that most people answer this question with something that a customer does, some answer with something a co-worker does. To change it up, when I am working at the farmers market it really bugs me a lot when the wind blows my line of cups away, that really sucks. They get all out of order, some go on the ground, syrup spills, damn that sucks more than any cell phone wielding Sorority Girl.

january vawter said:
I have this conversation with friends and staff quite a bit. If you want people to see you as a person you have to act like a person. If they seem terse or dismissive, ask them if they're having a bad day. Or crack jokes. Humor is a great ice breaker.

Me: Hello

Customer: Non-fat latte

Me: Well non-fat latte to you to sir!

or

Me: How's your day?

Customer: Could you make it extra hot?

Me: No sorry ma'am. I don't control the weather. But it's supposed to be in the mid 80s this weekend.

I've never had anyone take offense to this. Make them laugh. Once you share laughter, it's all over. They love you and are a customer for life. And you never know what happened before they walked through that door. Or they may have been scarred by a thousand snarky servers before you and approach your counter expecting the sort of shitty service that has become all too common in our industry.
I plan to have a sign posted at the counter that reads "You have our undivided attention. Please do us the courtesy of giving us yours. No cellphones, please."

Customers who ask me, when looking at our case full of baked pastries and goodies, "Are they fresh?" I always want to say, "No, they're stale, but you're the first dummy to get wise to it..." Customers who manage to spill a packet's worth of sugar on the coffee counter, not to mention the creamer. I mean, how hard is it to get the stuff in the cup? Customers who do not read the clearly marked labels on the pastry case, and ask me the price of a given item. Why did I even bother making all those labels?

My favorite. answering the phone to hear, "Are y'all open?" I always want to say something smart***, like "No, we're just practicing!" or "No, they locked me in overnight! Help!"
Yesssssss! Gripes me too!

Java Dreams said:
My biggest IRK is when they come to my drive up window and while talking on their cellphone ask ME to HOLD On for a sec. Give Me a Break!!!
Hmmm interesting - I have to admit I've never heard of steaming milk for an iced latte - nor micro foam as a finish. I don't believe my customers would enjoy this but hey, you hear of new ways to build drinks everyday. I agree with banter that emulates abuse although as an admitted "older" barista I've learned in this crafty industry we tend to get really sensitive when our skills are put on the chopping block. Try being an "older barista" utilizing grace while learning new stuff from twentysomethings. My motto is: the older I get the less I know and therefore I yearn to learn. There's a whole lot of things wrong in this world today but that's just not one of em." Shake it off.
Logan Demmy said:
I feel like the only time ive really gotten mad is when older barista came into our shop and treated like i knew nothing because I was clearly younger than her. She told me that I was making her 20 ounce (Im not the manager and I dont choose the sizes) iced latte wrong that i was going to water the drink down...

(slight segue)
We steam the milk for an iced latte to ~104 to break down some of the enzymes making the drink sweeter and have a nice micro foam top. Then pour it over a full cup of ice, because less milk is used the drink is actually less expensive than the similar sized hot latte. Some customers are confused by this, but I always try to get them to try it a new way. Of course if they are not happy with this method I am happy to remake the drink in the fashion of their choosing.

It was just infuriating for an older barista to treat me as dirt, and complain about me watering down her 20 ounce drink.
Or when the last one in the car can't make up their freaking mind and they try to dismiss you saying "go ahead and start those while I decide." Hate that!

Jesse -D-> said:
At the counter, I just move to the next person. Too bad you can't do that at the drive thru.

Java Dreams said:
My biggest IRK is when they come to my drive up window and while talking on their cellphone ask ME to HOLD On for a sec. Give Me a Break!!!
one thing that truely twists my panties at work is when i catch people dumping hot, fresh, beautiful coffee into the trash can at the condoment bar!!!!!! not only because i know that when i take ou the trash the bag will be melted and create a nasty mess of hot garbage for yours truely to deal with, or because the situation can be easily avoided by simple communication..."excuse me sir, i'll need at least two and a half inches of room in the top of the cup" maybe. i think really it just bothers me because i know that we have wounderfull coffee to offer and to see people put three inches worth of what ever into it they'll never know what they've destroyed! i never bitch at them though, if they are willing to come buy something from me i guess they have the right to do whatever they want with it!
Our shop is inside a casino here in Las Vegas so I've dealt with all sorts of people and had some interesting things happen. Yeah, they can be very rude and treat us like crap, but I've learned that I can't let them ruin my day. I chose to work at that location because I could benefit from it, so it all balances out and I just don't let their behaviors get to me. And then of course, there are those handful of great customers that really appreciate our service and product.

Some of the fellow employees though... well, that's another story.
That would bug me too

Java Dreams said:
My biggest IRK is when they come to my drive up window and while talking on their cellphone ask ME to HOLD On for a sec. Give Me a Break!!!
Nice tip. I don't know why I never thought of that.

january vawter said:
I have this conversation with friends and staff quite a bit. If you want people to see you as a person you have to act like a person. If they seem terse or dismissive, ask them if they're having a bad day. Or crack jokes. Humor is a great ice breaker.

Me: Hello

Customer: Non-fat latte

Me: Well non-fat latte to you to sir!

or

Me: How's your day?

Customer: Could you make it extra hot?

Me: No sorry ma'am. I don't control the weather. But it's supposed to be in the mid 80s this weekend.

I've never had anyone take offense to this. Make them laugh. Once you share laughter, it's all over. They love you and are a customer for life. And you never know what happened before they walked through that door. Or they may have been scarred by a thousand snarky servers before you and approach your counter expecting the sort of shitty service that has become all too common in our industry.
I like farmer's markets. Do you make coffee beverages there?

Jesse -D-> said:
nice, thanks for the wisdom. It is interesting that most people answer this question with something that a customer does, some answer with something a co-worker does. To change it up, when I am working at the farmers market it really bugs me a lot when the wind blows my line of cups away, that really sucks. They get all out of order, some go on the ground, syrup spills, damn that sucks more than any cell phone wielding Sorority Girl.

january vawter said:
I have this conversation with friends and staff quite a bit. If you want people to see you as a person you have to act like a person. If they seem terse or dismissive, ask them if they're having a bad day. Or crack jokes. Humor is a great ice breaker.

Me: Hello

Customer: Non-fat latte

Me: Well non-fat latte to you to sir!

or

Me: How's your day?

Customer: Could you make it extra hot?

Me: No sorry ma'am. I don't control the weather. But it's supposed to be in the mid 80s this weekend.

I've never had anyone take offense to this. Make them laugh. Once you share laughter, it's all over. They love you and are a customer for life. And you never know what happened before they walked through that door. Or they may have been scarred by a thousand snarky servers before you and approach your counter expecting the sort of shitty service that has become all too common in our industry.
I totally feel your pain on that one. What sucks is they do this AFTER I ask them if they need some room

paulito said:
one thing that truely twists my panties at work is when i catch people dumping hot, fresh, beautiful coffee into the trash can at the condoment bar!!!!!! not only because i know that when i take ou the trash the bag will be melted and create a nasty mess of hot garbage for yours truely to deal with, or because the situation can be easily avoided by simple communication..."excuse me sir, i'll need at least two and a half inches of room in the top of the cup" maybe. i think really it just bothers me because i know that we have wounderfull coffee to offer and to see people put three inches worth of what ever into it they'll never know what they've destroyed! i never bitch at them though, if they are willing to come buy something from me i guess they have the right to do whatever they want with it!

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