Thursday, November 30, 2006

And even more about my life

There are times when I wish that I could read minds. As in being asked to bring up a couple of towels to a room and when I get to the room being berated because I only brought two. It seems the guest wanted enough for their whole family. That I double checked whether they wanted hand towels and washcloths when I took the request seems to have escaped, that I brought up two, when they said 'a couple' and meant four was present for about thirty minutes. Well – I exaggerated it only felt like thirty minutes between the time I found out they wanted more than a couple and I picked up more and brought the extras to the room and heard again about my poor service skills in only bringing two when they wanted more.

That's not the only time I wish I could read minds. When a guest asks for a double there are three possible interpretations. And I wonder, 'Do they want a room with two beds? for two people? or with a double sized mattress?' I don't know until I ask. And most people are pleased to explain, but then I get the 'you know what I mean – a double' people who can't imagine that their usage is not the only possible explanation.

But most of the time I don't really want to know more that what people are talking about in front of me. When I've heard about how their roommate/significant others snores/talks/ bothers them for the twentieth time I already have the details in mind. I don't need to read their mind. I already know more than I want.

And then there are the complaints and the praises where I don't want to know more than is being said. I've had a couple of suspicions that people praising me wanted something else. I think it's because one of them asked for my name and my card and told me what a good job I'd done and then sent a complaint to the national office about what a poor job I'd done. Since I get far more compliments through the national office than complaints I take those with a grain of salt, though I do look at them seriously and try to improve. And certainly I make mistakes. I do have a problem with complimenting me to my face and bad mouthing me to someone else. I'm glad I couldn't read the mind of that guest, since I might have shown them how sarcastic I can get. While I might do that with my friends I tend to believe that I shouldn't be sarcastic with a customer. I can be tempted however into doing that which I don't want to do.

Also in complaints is the mind of the woman who called my ugly, about to lose my job, lacking in customer service skills, and more. I think the fact that I'd asked her to leave after finding her with a dog in the pool contributed to the fact that she was upset. There is a no pet policy posted at our motel. Somehow that fact escaped her notice. At least she said that she hadn't been aware of that when I caught her with the dog in the pool. I think she misspoke since she complained to the national office and told them that she'd been told to sneak the dog into the motel by a desk clerk. I had a little trouble believing that since the desk clerk and I had searched for a barking dog for several minutes before we found the dog in the pool. Maybe it's my mind I don't want her to read, certainly she seemed to have spoken her mind fairly clearly, but it's certainly not a mind I want to know any further things about.

Breakfast time is another time I'm just as glad I don't read minds. I really don't mind the requests for items that I'm out of. I do mind some other things. The guest who argued over how to make waffles in our waffle maker – I don't mind being told that the guest had closed the lid and was waiting to for it to quit beeping, as then the iron would have heated up. I do mind being told that I was wrong twice in a row when I told her that the waffle iron was hot and the beeping was because the iron sensed it had been closed, assumed that she had poured in the batter and was wanting her to rotate it so as to start the timer. Finally, that guest read the directions and then believed me. Actually this is another time I 'm glad that guests can't read my mind.

When I've had someone come down to the front desk two, three, four times to tell me how much he and his girlfriend are enjoying their time at the motel. I don't want to read their mind. And I certainly don't want him to read my mind even if my question of "Why are you telling me if you're having such a great time? Shouldn't you be back in the room having a great time, if it is indeed such a great time?" might be enough to keep him from coming back and that would keep me from thinking longingly of sticking pens into my ears.

I really don't want to read the mind of the guest who talked to me about whether or not the housekeepers were stealing from her room. Those mentions of Hispanics being thieves didn't really appeal to me nor did her dismissal of my suggestion that sticking a stuffed animal in the doorway while she went to breakfast (so she didn't have to keep a key with her) was more likely to lead to a theft than the actions of housekeepers who had been with the motel for seven and six years respectively.

And speaking of housekeepers, it's not that I'm glad I don't read minds, I'm also appreciative that I don't know what words they're saying in Spanish some days. One of those days was when they went into a room where potpourri was sprinkled on the bed and flower petals on the carpet. I suspect (that means I'm absolutely sure) that if I'd known any of the words the housekeeper said as she picked up each petal from the carpet I'd have had to reprimand her for her language. But then I wouldn't have wanted to be a hypocrite as I was probably thinking similar things as I worked to get the stains from the potpourri out of the linens.

I'm glad the customer the other night wasn't reading my mind. He was telling me about how we could have handled firing a desk clerk better. If he'd stopped right there I would have been fine. But he mentioned how nice she was to the customers and my mind started thinking about how she was a little nicer to some customers than we expected. He said something along the lines of how maybe he didn't know all the problems and I was thinking I really hope you don't know the problems. I mentioned she'd been late a few times and he went but I've known people to keep their jobs when they run late and do extra things around the place. And I was thinking it's not just that she's running late even though that's what I mentioned and there are some extras that we don't want our employees to provide around the place.

Yes, on the whole, I'm glad I don't read people's minds. And I'm certainly glad that they can't read mine.

No comments: