An Open Letter To Restaurant Managers
This morning, I was ready for work early and thought "Look at you, Tammie, you have enough extra time to hit a drive though for breakfast."
I pop into a drive through that's close to work. It starts out pretty normal, the guy says something like "Good morning, what would you like to order" and I give him my order. Generally, when you do that, they say something like, "That will be this many dollars at the window" or "Pull forward' or SOMETHING. Well, I heard nothing.
Let me squirrel around with something you need to know for the story: being a radio announcer, one of the things that happen over a number of years is you begin to "feel time". I don't know how else to explain it. If it's 2 minutes or less, I can accurately tell you how much time has passed within a second or two. A lot of my announcer coworkers can do the same.
Back to the drive-through. It was about a minute to I'd say a minute five and I didn't hear a peep out of the person at the window. So, I tried to nicely say, "Hi, did you guys get my order." Still nothing. Then, I ask again. Nothing. Then one more time. I'd say about 10-15 seconds between each ask.
THEN, the guy comes back on, "Ok, yeah, what can I get you? I'm a little out of it today. I'm pretty sick, so I'm sorry I was away".
So, yuck. I politely said, something like, "No worries. You get better and I think I'm going to hit up another restaurant today." He's like, "Oh no, I can take your order", and I'm like "No thank you" as I back out of the drive through. Yeah. That idiot was me.
A couple of things here:
I realize a lot of us have to work when we're sick. It's gotten a little better since Covid but there is still a sector of society where a missed day of work could blow their whole budget out of the water.
The food industry needs to do better. Maybe this was bad judgement from the worker to come to work. It was most definitely bad judgement from the manager to let him stay.
Thank you for telling me you were sick. I'm the kind of person who catches what others have just by thinking about it, and you saved me from that.
On the other side of that, knowing that people go to work sick there and make food, I think it will be a really long time, if ever, that I go back. It's 2023. Having your employees collapse at work from illness isn't as cool as it was back in 2019.