I wanted to follow up a semi-recently published article, parts one and two of “Don’t be that customer,” (which EVERY single person who has ever worked in the service industry would find some agreement with), with an article about our great customers.
There are always going to be “those” customers. In life, there are “those” people. In coffee and the service industry, it’s the same. However, one of my absolute favorite parts of being in the industry is the customers. I LOVE all of our customers, even the ones that are “those” customers because they offer some challenge or an opportunity to craft and perfect some of my skills (patience, communication, smiling). You never know who you are going to meet on any given day working in coffee. Some customers become more than just customers; they become like family.
One customer that always turns a bad day into a good one drives a pick-up truck. One of his first times at the shop, he ordered a 20 oz latte. It was really busy, and I forgot about his drink for a solid 20 minutes – if not longer. He didn’t say anything, didn’t complain, he just sat there patiently.
At one point I looked up and realized what I had done. So after that super extended wait, I made his drink. I included a ticket for a free drink that could be redeemed with either ‘A’ or myself, just to try and compensate for my mistake. Since that day he comes in semi-regularly, but he doesn’t drink lattes or cappuccinos or really anything other than black coffee.
Just the other day he had ordered our daily brew, but we had just run out. So I told him we could make him a pour over instead. I was surprised when he decided against putting cream in his drink out of respect for the coffee! He always puts cream in his coffee, and I really enjoyed that he appreciated the craft enough to drink it black. It’s always easy to strike up a conversation with him, which sometimes can make or break how the day ends. I’m thrilled he’s one of our customers.
Another customer, or customers I should say, who help me enjoy coming to work, usually arrives first thing in the morning on Saturdays. They only hang out for an hour or so, but in that time they ask ‘A’ and I about our blog, and house, and kitten, and everything. They ask questions about our lives outside of work, which makes me feel like a living person. They make me feel like an actual HUMAN BEING.
We are more than just coffee wizards; we are people. And all of the customers on this list make ME feel like a real person, not just an entity behind a bar.
Another customer who has helped me was one of the first customers I met after I started working at Calico. He would come in almost every day, using Calico as his office. One day in particular, he came in and sat down at the bar, (I had a project to do so I also was sitting at the bar), and he started asking different questions about my life and family. Anyway come to find out he’s a pastor, and he and his family had moved to Kearney to plant a new church. Since then, ‘A’ and I have developed and cherished the relationship we have built with them.
In some way or another, every single customer who comes through this shop helps me to grow. So, I want to thank all of you – the lady that exclusively orders pour overs and talks her co-workers into trying them as well,
The couple who tries a new tea everytime they come in and who is always so kind,
The woman on a journey across the country,
The young couple back visiting family,
All the ladies who come in and blog,
To the family who’s children exemplify politeness – thank you.
All of you who continue to come in day after day, you make this job worth it. No matter what other crap may be happening behind the scenes, you make every day just a little bit better!