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Giving You A Grilling About The Spice

, , | Right | September 14, 2021

I work at a popular chicken chain. I answer the phone in the early afternoon.

Me: “[Chicken Chain, Location], this is [My Name]. How may I serve you?”

The caller sounds like a man on the slightly older side.

Caller: “Hello, I was in yesterday afternoon, and ordered two of the spicy but asked for the grilled on it instead, but when we got home to eat our food, they had the spicy on them! My wife can’t have spicy; it’s too strong for her. So, I called twice last night and nobody answered, and nobody answered the messages I left, and I called this morning and nobody answered the phone then, either.”

Me: “I’m very sorry about that. I don’t know why they didn’t pick up or return your calls last night, but I know we were fairly busy this morning, so that’s probably why no one was able to pick up the phone today. But you’re through now. Unfortunately, I don’t really have the authority to do anything for you, but if you’ll wait one minute, I’ll go find my manager.”

This is not strictly true, as I do have some leeway to offer solutions to guests, but what he has said confuses me slightly, and I would rather have a manager’s authority behind it. I mute the phone and find my manager.

Me: “This guy says he came in yesterday and ordered two spicy sandwiches but wanted them to be the grilled ones because his wife can’t handle spicy? And then he got the regular spicy ones, anyway, it sounds like. I’m not really sure what exactly he’s trying to say.”

Our spicy sandwich and our grilled sandwich are two totally separate menu items and don’t even come in the same packaging. The only way this could have happened is either if the person ringing it in only heard the “spicy” part or if whoever was bagging orders was REALLY not paying attention.

My manager also looks confused but takes the phone and starts talking to the guest. After a few minutes, she comes over to me, chuckling a little.

Manager: “So, that guy told me about what he told you, and I was just as confused as you were, so I repeated it back to him: ‘So, you ordered two spicy sandwiches, but you wanted the grilled chicken on them?’ And he said, ‘No, no, we ordered the spicy salads!‘”

Me: “Oh, my goodness, that makes so much more sense!”

Each of our three salads comes with a particular type of chicken by default, but you can trade that out for any other type of chicken that we offer. He wanted the salad that usually comes with spicy chicken, but he wanted it with grilled chicken, instead. That is a much smaller distinction on our “put this in the bag” board, and it makes much more sense why the bagger would have made that mistake.

I would have known what he was talking about right away if he had actually said that he had ordered salads! When he didn’t specify, I assumed that he meant the sandwiches, which we serve a lot more of. Use all your words, people!

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