THINKING BUSINESS
a blog by Chris Barrow

The Naked Burger

You would have to be a blind man on a galloping horse not to have noticed that I’ve been on a Paleo nutrition programme for the last 75-ish days. Easy to remember: Fish, Meat, Fowl. Veg, Fruit, Nuts. No Dairy. (and before you ask – some alcohol). Results so far:

  1. Weight down from 12 st 10 lbs. to 11 st 5 lbs.

  2. Energy levels much higher

  3. Significantly less carbon monoxide released into the atmosphere

  4. Back into running again

  5. Constant comments from friends, family and colleagues “not to lose any more”

  6. Old clothes coming back out of wardrobe

I live a ‘road warrior’ lifestyle and so picking my way through menus in pubs, cafes, coffee shops, hotels, stations and airports can be tedious and sometimes leads to a burger as the only Paleo-palatable option. There are burgers and burgers – and I have to make a judgement call as to how much meat there is likely to be in the product. My search for the perfect 40,000-year old Mac has, however, led to an interesting observation on customer service in the retail food sector. Very few people listen. My order sounds like this: “I’d like a naked burger. That means a burger with no bread, no bun, no fries, no onions (that’s not Paleo – it’s just me). Just give me a plain burger, with a fried egg on top and some salad or veg on the side.” Not overly complicated may I suggest? But what do I get? Burgers with fries Burgers in buns Burgers without eggs Burgers with onions And any combination thereof… In fact, I would estimate that only 20% of servers are able to take my order, collect from the kitchen and supply me with what I asked for. It tickles me that, after the incredulous look as I place my order, after the puzzlement as I throw my fries, bun and onions off to the side. Even after the resignation of collecting said carbo-leftovers from my table place….. The same server will then ask me if I would like to see the dessert menu and try their special death by chocolate, cheese or crumble? Didn’t they get it? Or didn’t they care? So it has me thinking, as always, about my business and yours. How good are we at listening to what the client is ACTUALLY asking for. Do we take any time to think WHY? How many fully-clothed burgers are you serving in your business to folks who wanted to go commando? Because fully-clothed burgers is what you do all day – and the next client is just another client. Don’t get me started on “have you any soya milk?”

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