It’s Much More Than Coffee

Something that I’ve talked about here before on more than one occassion is customer service. Usually it’s about bad service and how that bad service can be made better. Today is a nice change from that pattern.

My Friday mornings lately have been spent hanging out with members of the local MINI Club at a coffee joint most of you haven’t heard of: Dutch Bros. The one where we hang out is loud and boisterous in the morning, usually with club music or bad 80’s hair band metal blaring through the speaker system. The employees inside are equally boisterous and appear to be truly excited to be making coffee. Every customer gets an enthusiastic **Good Morning ( ! )** with their favorite coffee that is made quickly.

Every day, every time.

This is where it gets cool. After my first visit ( ! ) my drink was remembered and after 2 my name. I had to skip the Friday meetup for about 3 weeks but when I came back, drink and name were both remembered. And I was treated like an old friend that hasn’t been seen for years! Pretty great feeling, all over buying a cup of coffee.

Skip ahead a month or two. I have been visiting a 2nd location that is more convenient for me. I’ve been there fewer than 10 times. Of course my drink is remembered. Of course someone notices that I drive a MINI and asks if I’m a member of the club. Always something to talk about when walking up to the window. Yesterday I used the drive-thru for the first time ever, which is exactly like walking up to the window, but seated in your car. No annoying speaker box, always face-to-face service.

So, drive-thru yesterday. I think it caught them off guard since I was on the wrong side of the store. Still, super fast, super high energy. This morning when I drove the drive thru, it was my turn to place my order and before I could finish saying “large”, my coffee was pulled out from behind the window onto the shelf. I looked at 3 brightly beaming faces that were all looking at me as if to say “so, how you like us now?”.

Boom.

Starbucks, you’re fired. It’s not you, it’s Dutch Bros. They do it better and get it. Not some of the time, all of the time.

By Don

Lead bottle washer at donburnside.com, host at whiteroofradio.com and tech guru for the MotoringFile family of sites.

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