Employee calls customer a 'cow' in email blunder

Employee calls customer a 'cow' in email blunder

A restaurant employee who mistakenly called a potential customer a ‘cow’ in an email has forced the establishment to apologise – The Independent reports.

Jade Sharp, a bride-to-be who was viewing wedding venues, was shocked to receive the hurtful email after a visit to The Mulberry Tree in Kent.

Sharp took to TripAdvisor to describe the experience, which took a bad turn when she arranged to view the restaurant for a second time.

She explained that she emailed the restaurant manager to arrange a time and date for the second appraisal - however, when she and her partner turned up, staff were unaware of the appointment.

Within her review, Sharp described the lacklustre tour by the restaurant manager, who failed to answer several of their questions. She also shared this feedback to the restaurant manager, who she emailed after the experience.

However, the response she received was unexpected.

The staff member who gave Sharp and her fiancé the tour described the bride-to-be as a “cow”, stating that the whole day “pissed me off” – an email which was meant for another employee.

Sharp said she was “hurt and upset” after reading the email, writing on the review platform: “How rude and unprofessional the way in which she spoke about us!

“For a potential wedding booking the customer service we have received first hand is awful disgusting and disrespectful,” she added to the scathing review. “We’ve had a lucky escape by the sounds of your other reviews based on bad customer service and your management team!”

Karen Williams, Owner of The Mulberry Tree has apologised to the customer in a public TripAdvisor review.

“I am absolutely mortified, horrified and completely embarrassed that you had sight of such an email,” she wrote. “It is completely unprofessional and indefensible.”

However, she then went on to defend the restaurant’s response.

“You were adamant that you did not want to get married at The Mulberry Tree, completely understandably so after the email you were sent so I did not wish to insult you by attempting to make amends after such a catastrophic mistake on our part, especially when it is your wedding day involved,” Williams said in the email.

Sharp added in her review that she didn’t receive an apology from the staff member who sent the offensive email.

With the internet enabling consumers to circulate news about businesses within hours, it’s important that firms are aware of how they mitigate the impact of negative experiences.

A company that attempts to cover up a PR disaster or defends themselves, as in Sharps’ case, could deter future business. And whilst these reviews can cripple a small business, firms should refrain from populating review sites with false reviews to improve their online ratings.

In fact, one VICE reporter turned a false restaurant into London’s top-rated restaurant on TripAdvisor, showing how easily these sites can be manipulated.

However, this dishonest practice is lending itself to Glassdoor, a similar by nature site, but instead of rating entertainment outlets, employees rate their employers.

Managers are allegedly trying to improve their ratings by coercing their employees into writing favourable reviews, ISL Recruitment Director, Alan Furley, has warned HR Grapevine.

Although the integrity of reviews should be met with a pinch of salt, it’s better for a business to be honest, apologise for its mistakes and seek to improve in response to feedback. 

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Comments (3)

  • Don Maximus
    Don Maximus
    Wed, 11 Apr 2018 2:07am BST
    Anyone else see the writing style similarities in the two messages? I would say Jade Sharp wrote both messages. Anyone can spoof and email address.
  • Kunjir
    Tue, 10 Apr 2018 2:30pm BST
    Maybe customer deserved it...
  • Amy
    Tue, 10 Apr 2018 1:50pm BST
    "I am absolutely mortified, horrified and completely embarrassed that you had sight of such an email"....

    Surely she should be absolutely mortified, horrified etc. that such an email was being sent in the first place!

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