Is your staff’s ignorance hurting your sales?

I love that California restaurant chains now list their dishes’ nutritional information. It helps me make better choices.

However, I’ve discovered that some restaurant staff prefer to not become even minimally familiar with the information. It made me wonder if there are other industries where staff’s purposeful ignorance is costing them sales.

Let me share the story and you can see if there are any parallels to your organization.

After giving us a few minutes to peruse the menu, the server asked if we wanted an appetizer. My friend and I both shook our heads as I said, “Not after I saw the calorie count!”

The server said, “Yeah, I know. That’s a common response.”

I asked, “So do you sell a lot fewer appetizers now?”

“Yes,” she responded. “I wish they didn’t print the calorie counts. It affects my tips. I haven’t read the nutrition information.”

What she didn’t realize was that if she had bothered to read the new menu, she could have easily suggested low-calorie items when she got the push back about the higher calorie options. Had she thought about the objection and how she could counter it, she could have easily said, “The prawn cocktail is only 150 calories and zero fats!”

She wouldn’t have been able to turn around 100% of those watching their calorie intake, but she could have sold at least some of these customers. She would have enhanced her customers’ dining experience as well as increased her tips.

Have your sales reps examined common objections to see if there are other options that would make their customers happy as well as increase the size of the order? If not, perhaps it’s worth a discussion and an exploration of other solutions for your customers.