trust your customers?

If you’re a fan of Douglas Adams, you’ll recognize this quote: it is part of a story of Ford Prefect having an experience quite similar to that of today’s food bloggers.

The particular way in which he was choosing to dice recklessly with death today was by trying to pay for a drinks bill the size of a small defence budget with an American Express Card, which was not acceptable anywhere in the known Universe.
Douglas Adams, So long, and thanks for all the fish

Dave Miers has a post called Trust your customers where he relates an experience at a cafe – the owner trusted him to come back another day with the money, and so he returned, and bought another coffee on the return trip.

Beyond this, he started telling other people about the cafe (and then blogged about it too) – in theory, this is a lot of positive publicity.

One of the commenters pointed out that this might work for a cafe, but would never work for a retailer. In my limited retail experience, I know that (some) people will take a retailer for everything they possibly can: the bigger the company is, the more they’re prepared to do to take advantage of them.

This kind of reasoning about taking from big faceless corporations sounds familiar doesn’t it?

But back to the cafe example: what do you think? If you’re running a cafe, how much money would you trust to a new customer who didn’t bring enough / any money? Would the answer change for a regular customer? If you’re a customer, would you take advantage of this situation, or would you tell other people about the kindness so that they would become patrons of the cafe?

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.