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You're reading: Food Critic: Help me, I’m your customer
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While the city’s offerings have improved greatly since the first time I was in Kyiv 16 years ago, service is still stuck in the slow lane in too many places.

Basic principles that are ingrained in the business culture of my American homeland and many other nations still haven’t taken root here, for whatever reason. It’s true that I may have raised my voice at a waiter/waitress a time or two (hundred times) for bad service, but really I’m an easy client – a guaranteed 10 percent or more tipper, if treated right. But I am not always. Here’s what I’m seeing that’s too often wrong:

Greet me when I come in: Too busy? Smile and wave. Give me some acknowledgement that you know I’m here. What, you say, you’re not a waiter or waitress, but have some other job in the place? Tell a waitress that a customer has arrived. No matter how crowded, I give a place two minutes maximum to at least acknowledge my presence before I walk out; it should take only two seconds. If you’re not noticed right away, this is a place that doesn’t want your business.

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