Exceeding Expectations

March 30, 2015

I worked in the restaurant industry for years before I became a web developer. I started at one of those popular easy-dining chains with a wrap around, horseshoe bar in the middle when I was 19, then on to more fine dining establishments as I got older.

Client services work has similarities to being a server in a restaurant. Especially one area in particular—exceeding expectations. I worked for tips as a server/bartender, so naturally I wanted to be personable and exceed the expectations of my guests. That meant i'd have to predict what the guest needed before that guest realized they needed it. This could also be lumped into the category of time management. If the guest has just ordered sushi, the chopsticks were placed beforehand. If the guest ordered an appetizer that you'd eat with your hands (hot wings come to mind), then I'd make sure extra napkins were placed on the table.

A couple of things I try to do when scheduling projects:

  • Offset project deadlines or milestones 3 days before they are due to the client. If your deadline is due to the client on the 4th, schedule that same deadline internally for the 1st. This gives you and your team plenty of time internally to get on the same page and mitigate any weird issues.
  • Schedule out and always deliver early. If your deadline is Friday, then have it done a few days ahead of time and deliver the morning of the due date.

Photo credit: Opacity.

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