Have you ever been promised something you’re so excited about, you just can’t hold it in? I’ve been promised endless things, only to be severely disappointed when they don’t happen.
In my eyes, you should never make promises if you can’t deliver. In other words, ‘walk the talk’. How many times has a supplier, an employee or even an employer promised you one thing, and delivered (or failed to deliver) another?
“I promise I won’t come to work late again,” I hear over and over again. “I promise you’ll be on television”, “I promise a Christmas bonus”, “Trust me,”… the list goes on. From my experience, you can never trust someone that says, “trust me”.
Have you guessed by this point that I’ve recently been let down? Not so long ago, a supplier approached me with a range of great concepts and opportunities. “You’re a star, and you have ‘the look’,” this supplier said to me, before assuring me their company wanted me to use their product. They even said they would fly me to Italy!
However, when I turned my back, this supplier said exactly the same thing to a chef friend of mine. I felt like I was at a club getting chatted up by a guy with a handful of cliché pick-up lines. Most of us have to admit there is some element of this scenario that would make us smile (even if it is just for the attention). Nonetheless, this smile soon fades as lines get repeated again, and again, and again.
Overall, my suppliers are pretty good, and if they don’t deliver, I follow up. I have no trouble getting on the phone and saying, “If you say you’re going to do something, just do it – or don’t make the promise in the first place!”
When it comes to my staff, I practice what I preach. I will never tell an employee they may receive a pay rise or a promotion unless it is absolutely set in stone.
I don’t even promise less hours, because we do long hours here at Bathers, especially in summer. It’s never quiet, and I don’t want to give my staff the false hope that things may quieten down. In fact, I’m typing this article after working 24 hours straight, after covering a café section, then a function in the restaurant and then a shift in the bakery.
Back to promises. I recently promised customers my ‘Itali-anna’ dessert degustation at the Bathers Pavilion Restaurant was going to be a smash. I also told San Pellegrino I would use their sparkling waters in one of the desserts. Of course, I wanted to be a hero, so I used it in all the desserts.Here’s the menu:
Nougat cheesecake, strawberry affogato,
yoghurt and olive oil gelato“Aranciata Rossa”
Vanilla panna cotta, tropical panettone pain
per du, mango caviar“Aranciata”
Ice-cream on Sticks
Honey roast peach, milk chocolate crèma, hazelnut biscotti “Chinotto”
Beetroot carpaccio, goats cheese canolli, toasted breadcrumbs
Limonata meringue tarts“Limonata”
Itali-Anna chocolate bars for home
To be promised something and to not receive it can be very disappointing – especially if you’re excited. No one likes to feel like a balloon that has been popped and deflated. So next time you promise something, really think about it before opening your mouth. And please, make sure you deliver!