I was selling to the food service industry for many years and one of the most gifted chefs I had ever come across was a gentleman by the name of David Brandt. A survivor of the holocaust in World War II David learned at a very young age that customers always came first. He was the executive chef at a very popular restaurant in eastern Rhode Island. Part of his success was he came out of the kitchen in a very nice chef coat, greeted and knew the first name of every patron.
One of his patrons financed him and the patron’s son to open their own restaurant in Providence, Rhode Island. It unfortunately had to close because his partner had some personal issues. Those issues cost both of them the business.
When the restaurant in Providence was open David would do the exact same thing that he did when he was the executive chef at, what is still, a very popular restaurant on the East Bay of Rhode Island. He knew every customer by their first names including Mrs. Chase, who ate there every evening and owned the Ann & Hope department stores. Ann is Hope is where Sam Walton came to visit and based his concepts on the Wal-Mart legacy.
The important concept here is customer service is everything! And to all the executive chefs that are out there, please treat your customers as your friends.