Had an interesting experience the other day as I were to make payment for my breakfast....
Me: Table 13
Cashier: (after checking in the system) $5.50
Me: (Puzzled) Hmm cannot be...coz i ordered more than that
Cashier: But it stated here .... Prata & Teh O... Table 14
Me: Mistaken....its 13, & we didnt order that
Cashier: No orders on Table 13 ....blank .... Did you move to another table?
Me: Nope...we sat there all along.... how come there are no orders at the table?
Cashier: (sigh) some times the system is like this.... blank.... got magic... your orders were not Prata & Teh O?
Me: No...it's more than that ... and at Table 13
Cashier: Aiyah..... i think they (the ground staff) didnt key in the orders....what's your order?
Me: Prata Cheese, Thosai, Teh Tarik x2, Plain water x3
Cashier: Ok noted....its $12.50
Me: Ahh...it's more like it....
Processing Transactions ...
Cashier: Here's the change ..... but there is no receipt, ya?
Me: it's okay.... Thank you.... & I'm still wondering about the orders..... if the orders were not keyed in earlier, how come the correct orders were sent to our table?....hmmm.....unless someone else mistakenly paid for our table?
Cashier: Errr....yup, someone else paid for your table... they said they sat at 13.... but actually sat at 30....
Me: I see.... (i didnt pursue further.....)
I found this experience had so much learning points here. A very good case study on human behaviour. The main learning points I derived : the mindset of about "Blaming others" -
1) Cashier: No orders on Table 13 ....blank .... Did you move to another table?
2) Cashier: (sigh) some times the system is like this.... blank
3) Cashier: Aiyah..... i think they (the ground staff) didnt key in the orders..
<Blaming Ground Staff>
4) Cashier: Errr....yup, someone else paid for your table... they said they sat at 13.... but actually sat at 30....
<Blaming that someone else; i didnt pursue further at this point, but there's a possibility she could have heard incorrectly on the table number, and keyed in 13 for payment instead (if that's the case, it was her who was to be blamed....evil laugh!) >
In this scenario, the cashier blamed others on three (maybe four) occasions. While initially I thought maybe there could be a mistake on the groundstaff part for not keying on the orders, but as the conversation went on, it showed so much of her character.
When faced with a problem, or situation like this, it is ALWAYS easy to 'taichi' and pass on the blame onto others.
Sometimes (or rather Most of the Times!) we need to learn to take ownership on the things we do, and take responsibilities for things that had gone wrong.
It's okay to admit mistake mistake (I covered why we must 'Celebrate Failure' in my workshop) & learn from it. People are cool with it. Humans are forgiving creatures actually.
We need to remember, when our index finger is pointing others, the other fingers are pointing back at us.
What other learning points have you got from this experience?
From the Editor
The Speaking Factory is founded by Hazriq Idrus, Asia's Trusted Applied Creativity and Public Speaking Strategist. He is the author of The Stage Fright Antidote and co-authored four other books. His mission is to help professionals & entrepreneurs cultivate a culture of team creativity & communicate with impact to achieve organisational outcomes.
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