He’s right, you’re wrong…That’s not so hot…

He’s right, you’re wrong…But is that it?

If Silent Sam is at one end of the difficult customer spectrum, then know it all Niles (or Nancy) solidly anchors the other extreme. This is the person who disputes just about every utterance you make and always seems (or purports) to know more about whatever you’re saying than you. He’s probably also the poster child for the “not always right, but never in doubt” school of behavior.

The rub is that pointing out that he’s “less than right” will only garner more of the same and likely his resentment to boot. And neither is very productive when it comes to making the sale or addressing a problem. That brings us to figuring out how to deal with him constructively.

In this case the best approach is to engage and even encourage exactly what comes naturally to this superior type. That means asking them to actively participate. You could do that by saying something like, “Since you have a better handle on this than me, I’d really like to know how you think we ought to proceed.”. That might just get you a response you can both work with.

No matter how you proceed, the point is to harness as a benefit what was earlier a problem. By engaging Niles or Nancy as an active participant, you have a fighting chance at avoiding a tug of war and maybe just allow them to solve the challenge for you.


Those not so hot…hot water woes

You’re fighting a never-ending battle with not-so-hot incoming water in that on premise laundry. It turns out the water heater just isn’t able to supply all the guest showers in the morning and the machines too. The heater’s thermostat is already set as high as code allows. So aside from just living with it, what can you do? Given the inevitability of that problem continuing, you need a solution and like now.

Well, for starters you can ask the manager to consider reshuffling the order in which they run those loads. For example, if they process table linens first – and the inevitable stains on them require hot water, why not move those to the last category they run when there’s more available? And since those overnight sheets are the least soiled, run them first, followed by terry items that are likewise typically less dirty.

Aside from reshuffling the wash category schedule, with some formula alterations you might lessen the severity as well. That might include adding flushes, slightly increasing wash times, switching from some hot cycles to split temperatures and of course bumping the detergent feeds a bit as well.

Whether it’s all of these or just one or two, by addressing the issue constructively you might get past what would (at best) otherwise be a continuing cause for trouble calls and maybe (at worst) exposing the business for loss to the competition.