One Person Can Ruin Your Business according to Jay Baer

I like Jay Baer. He's cool and he knows what he's talking about as far as I can tell. But this I have a bit of a problem with his stance on this.

Do I agree with him? Yes, in hindsight, of course. If you could you would always make the right decision. In fact, that would be ideal. But sometimes you can't, you have only so much information before you need to make decisions.

You can do all the research you want, but something else could come up later so in business you have to move, fast.

Have you had an experience like Jay describes in his #JayToday video? I have, but I have gone back to the place where that happened before for a few reasons. He proposes that one bad experience with one person in the company will ruin my perception of the entire company.

But I believe that to be inacurate in practice, I personally will go back sometimes, and I know people will go back too. Because we know better and we know one person isn't the reflection of the whole.

Sometimes I love the food. Sometimes I know the person wasn't supposed to be serving me. Sometimes they could have just received bad news. Maybe they were fired earlier and they are just finishing out their shift. You never know...

Even Jay asks about the fairness of this.

I don't think it's fair or right to throw the bunch because of a couple bad apples. That is the reason that cliche exists in the first place. Let's not throw out the baby with the bathwater I've heard it said too...

So from a human point of view, I think it's arrogant and self-serving to take such a strong stance. I am right! I am a good judge of how this business should operate, darn it! And I'm gonna show 'em! How dare they not give me my attention. I deserve it.

Believe me, it takes one to know one... I have done this myself but I still think it isn't the most compassionate thing we could do.

More importantly, we are judging the whole because of one. Are we that dim witted? Sometimes we are and unfortunately we could even be denying ourselves of great possibilities by doing this.

Here's an example why we shouldn't judge the whole based on one

For example, I live near Fountain Valley a city filled with some of the best Asian food you'll ever have in the world. Fountain Valley, Garden Grove, and surrounding areas have some of the highest Asian population concentrations in the world (outside of their respective home lands). With that comes amazing food.

The best Pho in the world is found around here, Not in San Francisco, not in Vancouver... I tried them all. Dim Sum... yup, best one is here as well. But service... now that is hard to find...

By the standards that Jay speaks about in this video he would never enjoy these foods I talk about. Why? Because the service is notoriously poor. It is no joke, the service we expect from a place as regular as an airport restaurant would be considered royal compared to the service you'll get in one of the aforementioned restaurants.

You'll be lucky someone takes your order with a smile. They'll scribble something down and leave you.

Literally, leave you.

You will sit there for some time and wait. Eventually you may or may not get water before your meal. Good luck asking for it if you don't have someone to translate for you.

You'll get it, eventually.

But the food you ordered is coming, and it's hot and it's good and it may be one of the best things you try all year. And to think that you could have missed out because something beyond your understanding was happening behind the scenes... that would be a shame.

Clearly, there is always context. In my case above, there's a cultural dissonance. In Jay's example, more than meets the eye is also at play.

Also that scenario I described above is real, it happens today still. It's getting better because owners are faced with social media and the immediacy of complaints and entitlement. It's changing, but slowly.

But for business!? As an owner, you better think that  EVERY SINGLE customer that comes through your door has this mentality. They want to be number one. They want your attention, now. Or they will leave, and they will whine to their friends about it on social media.

Why, because it's what we do. We like to whine. We very seldom see great marks about a business on Twitter, or Facebook. It's always gripes and whines right? But we love them.

As a business owner,  do your best to give them that attention. Jay and I are not the only ones that will leave a business and never come back because one crappy employee ruined it for us. I wish it weren't so, but it's the reality.

I wish we could all sit 'round and sing kumbaya with that bad apple and kindly teach them the error of their ways.

To this gesture of higher understanding and compassion, of course, we would expect a glistening smile and thankful look for imparting such wisdom.

The newly refreshed bad apple, turned into a stellar employee because of our lessons would prance away into the sunset, ready to happily serve the next customer because, gosh darn it they love their job now that we explained things to them. But it doesn't work that way.

Yes, life happens and you can't predict 100% of it, but do your damn best at being ahead of the game. A good business owner would have prevented what Jay talks about here, way in advance before it was even a problem.

WHY weren't there menus at the restaurant!? -- In this particular case, there are bigger issues at play, clearly.