The Lack of Compliments

Legs

ADC
Book Reviewer
I had cause to stay at a Holiday Inn for a few days. Not because I wanted to, but because my usual favourite hotel was fully booked and it was short notice.

It was fairly normal. Bed was OK, breakfast was fine and it seemed clean and well run. However, the two ladies who were serving at breakfast were superb. Helpful, personable and efficient. All good things.

As I was booking out before heading home I asked to see the Duty Manager. As it happened he was at the desk. I told him I wanted to publicly compliment the two ladies (I had already given them financial compliments). He was astounded. He said that they often get petty complaints but it's the first time anyone has given him compliments regarding the staff.

Is this because it's unusual to have good staff? Do we (as people) only want to be petty, demanding and demeaning? Does anyone else ever give public compliments to someone's boss?
 

G4Star

Old-Salt
I often stay at Premier Inn's for work these days.
And nearly always get an email asking how the location did.
Its good to pass on compliments as a lot of these staff can get a pay incentive if feedback is good.

But, yes some premier inn's & hotels do seem surprised if you praise them.
The amount of whingers at most hotels these days is surprising.
 
I'd like to say I'm amazed, but I'm not.

We are often out and about and quite free with our compliments either direct to staff or to "managers" . Everything from an egg roll at a roadside stop (great roll, thanks mate) to Rick Stein's Sea Food Restaurant watching a waitress fillet a fish for the next table.

It costs nothing, makes us feel good and more importantly makes the other person feel better about their day and the management know things are right..

Maybe it's a generation thing? People seem very very happy to tap away as keyboard warriors that the waiting staff spilled tea in the saucer or there was no organic, gluten free, sugar free, lactose free, taste free option on the cake menu but not so free on saying "Thank You".
 
I had cause to stay at a Holiday Inn for a few days. Not because I wanted to, but because my usual favourite hotel was fully booked and it was short notice.

It was fairly normal. Bed was OK, breakfast was fine and it seemed clean and well run. However, the two ladies who were serving at breakfast were superb. Helpful, personable and efficient. All good things.

As I was booking out before heading home I asked to see the Duty Manager. As it happened he was at the desk. I told him I wanted to publicly compliment the two ladies (I had already given them financial compliments). He was astounded. He said that they often get petty complaints but it's the first time anyone has given him compliments regarding the staff.

Is this because it's unusual to have good staff? Do we (as people) only want to be petty, demanding and demeaning? Does anyone else ever give public compliments to someone's boss?
It's not common. I try to do it where deserved / if I can, as I know that in some firms there is an employee recognition programme or similar.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I had cause to stay at a Holiday Inn for a few days. Not because I wanted to, but because my usual favourite hotel was fully booked and it was short notice.

It was fairly normal. Bed was OK, breakfast was fine and it seemed clean and well run. However, the two ladies who were serving at breakfast were superb. Helpful, personable and efficient. All good things.

As I was booking out before heading home I asked to see the Duty Manager. As it happened he was at the desk. I told him I wanted to publicly compliment the two ladies (I had already given them financial compliments). He was astounded. He said that they often get petty complaints but it's the first time anyone has given him compliments regarding the staff.

Is this because it's unusual to have good staff? Do we (as people) only want to be petty, demanding and demeaning? Does anyone else ever give public compliments to someone's boss?
Its an interesting question. I was discussing something similar with my in-laws. All of this is caveated by it being pretty specific by age, class and culture, but:

There is a (multi) generational framework of manners which seems to be going out of fashion and being replaced by [something else] which has yet to be determined, so there are different replacement models competing. I suspect it is because of the internet, which has rapidly changed the default or affordable level of communication in the same way that the printing press did.

Some of this is good - much of the old framework of manners was not helping anyone much, and acted instead like straightjackets. Cowan's infamous sandwiches memo and the extraordinary expectations and constraints some middle class British people put on themselves and others (i.e. guests), which in no way "make others more comfortable" as per Debretts, and instead make them less comfortable and increase social awkwardness. Those manners were outdated and required change, they were only benefiting the small and dwindling population who expected or enforced them.

Much of this is not so good - the coarsening of 'authoritative' public debate and the concurrent devaluing of expertise (by the media, because they present non-expert talking heads as experts) and decrease of trust in experts does not promote social cohesion. The rapid democratisation of communication might amplify some quality voices which were previously unheard, but unless society contains >50% of those, it will amplify more trash voices too. Anyone who has spent time on any social media can see this. It's what happens when you remove all gatekeepers without a plan for what comes next.

The same thing applies to your Desk Manager. When you give everyone a voice while decreasing trust and social cohesion, you don't get happy mumbles, you get an angry mob. A bit late now to turn back the digital clock, so probably the best thing we can do is recognise the problem, and like you take steps to improve our individual behaviour, and encourage others to do the same. If enough people do that, your Desk Manager might start getting compliments again instead of just complaints.
 

Legs

ADC
Book Reviewer
I had cause to stay at a Holiday Inn for a few days. Not because I wanted to, but because my usual favourite hotel was fully booked and it was short notice.

It was fairly normal. Bed was OK, breakfast was fine and it seemed clean and well run. However, the two ladies who were serving at breakfast were superb. Helpful, personable and efficient. All good things.

As I was booking out before heading home I asked to see the Duty Manager. As it happened he was at the desk. I told him I wanted to publicly compliment the two ladies (I had already given them financial compliments). He was astounded. He said that they often get petty complaints but it's the first time anyone has given him compliments regarding the staff.

Is this because it's unusual to have good staff? Do we (as people) only want to be petty, demanding and demeaning? Does anyone else ever give public compliments to someone's boss?
People are ***** and feel entitled.

A certain national equivalent of the Met Office changed their website without telling anyone that they were going to do it, which fecked delivery of warnings to our supplier and also to our national TV company customer. On a weekend - you do change on a Monday if you have half a Scooby.

Two weekends ago I got a call when on holiday and out with friends at a local event - went home to check what it was.

Looked at the data delivered and saw it was stale, raised a high priority call with our supplier. Downloaded the old data which is in the form of an XML file and took a look. Went to the website that had changed and looked at the display page for this data, edited the xml file so that its data matched that on the website, uploaded and rendered for customer - this took around 6 six hours but their weather shows had the data. Did the same the next day having taken my laptop to the Sunday lunch we were booked into.

Complaint came in yesterday....the *****

My boss knows the score so I don't GAF but I'll be less than willing to go over and above for these clients in future. The *****
 
Always praise where it's due, as much as I'll always comment on shoddy standards if reasonable.
 
But, yes some premier inn's & hotels do seem surprised if you praise them.
My experience of such places is that the scope for criticism or praise of staff is very limited. Their modus operandi is such that there is often very little interaction between staff and guest after a brief check-in; some places do not even provide a buffet service breakfast, providing instead a kind of breakfast horror bag.

Cheap but soulless.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Because the standard of home-grown talent is often dire. If @Legs had said nearer east I wouldn't have been surprised, either.

I've said it before: round here, if the staff in a coffee shop are slim, smiling, efficient and friendly, they're typically Eastern European. If they're white English, they're typically tubby, not too bright, surly and speak to me in some strangulated pseudo-BAME accent.

Oh, and they need a calculator to do even the most basic arithmetic.
 
I had cause to stay at a Holiday Inn for a few days. Not because I wanted to, but because my usual favourite hotel was fully booked and it was short notice.

It was fairly normal. Bed was OK, breakfast was fine and it seemed clean and well run. However, the two ladies who were serving at breakfast were superb. Helpful, personable and efficient. All good things.

As I was booking out before heading home I asked to see the Duty Manager. As it happened he was at the desk. I told him I wanted to publicly compliment the two ladies (I had already given them financial compliments). He was astounded. He said that they often get petty complaints but it's the first time anyone has given him compliments regarding the staff.

Is this because it's unusual to have good staff? Do we (as people) only want to be petty, demanding and demeaning? Does anyone else ever give public compliments to someone's boss?
The wife and I experience this a lot in the UK.

Generally speaking, the British Public do not make for good customers in terms of treating them with a measure of respect.
 
I was having a quiet beer on my own in an empty hotel bar some time ago, when I heard a soft voice say "my, you're a handsome one, and don't you smell nice too."

I quickly looked around and seeing nobody else, I mentioned it to the barman on his return.

He told me it must've been the peanuts on the bar, they're complimentary...

My coat, thanks.
 
Because the standard of home-grown talent is often dire. If @Legs had said nearer east I wouldn't have been surprised, either.

I've said it before: round here, if the staff in a coffee shop a re slim, smiling, efficient and friendly, they're typically Eastern European. If they're white English, they're typically tubby, not too bright, surly and speak to me in some strangulated pseudo-BAME accent.

Oh, and they need a calculator to do even the most basic arithmetic.

Racist.
 

Rab_C

LE
Because the standard of home-grown talent is often dire. If @Legs had said nearer east I wouldn't have been surprised, either.

I've said it before: round here, if the staff in a coffee shop a re slim, smiling, efficient and friendly, they're typically Eastern European. If they're white English, they're typically tubby, not too bright, surly and speak to me in some strangulated pseudo-BAME accent.

Oh, and they need a calculator to do even the most basic arithmetic.
I have had surly Eastern European’s and downright rude Chinese and some excellent service from Brits. I think there’s a little too much generalisation about Brits in service industries.
 

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