Subway’s Five Dollar Footlong Promise

 

Subway, Oops!

What is all the fuss about?   Subway’s famous footlong sub is actually an 11 inch long footlong sub! Did anyone really think that each and every bun that Subway bakes will end up at exactly 12 inches long?  Ever heard of shrinkage?

Ok, Subway got caught not over delivering on their promise. The pans they use to bake their footlong subs are twelve inches long and the buns can’t get any bigger than the pan, but the occasional one will not rise to the occasion and end up shorter. Not Good Subway! If you advertise a foot, your end product should be 12 inches. (My wife reading over my shoulder mumbled something about the head baker at Subway probably being a man….not sure what she was talking about.)

What I found interesting is the person that alerted the media to this potential end to civilization as we know it…an Australian! I grew up in Australia and wonder where an Australian got a ruler with inches on it? Australia has been metric since the mid 60’s, did he raid his grandfather’s tool kit, or is he just one of those people that spend their lives looking for their 15 minutes of fame?

What should the consumer be angry about? Being misled by an inch? Or the reported ( by a Subway franchisee ) 25% percent reduction in the amount of meat that Subway puts on their shorter than advertised buns. Now that is something to get angry about!

 

QSR Customer Service Index 2011

The American Customer Service Index for this year has just been released and a few surprises jump out at me.

For many years Starbucks has been in the decline in store numbers both here in the US and in many other countries around the world with local opposition beating them in both service, price and coffee quality. Some would say that is not a hard thing to do but it seems their customers are happy with their offering, with a 2.6% increase in customer satisfaction over last year. That’s two years in a row of happy customers.

I am also happy to see Pizza Hut finally doing something right and again it is two years of increased customer satisfaction with this year being a whopping 3.8% over last year.

In fact the majority of fast food did quite well in the rankings with McDonalds beating the rest at 7.5% over last year.

The concepts that did not do as well are the ones that you would expect and I am a little sad to see KFC flat this year. They seem to have lost there way a bit recently. I certainly have noticed a downturn in product quality, service and cleanliness recently.

If you are interested in seeing the full list by industry here is how you get there.

http://www.theacsi.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=18&Itemid=115

 

 

Consultant For Your Franchise QSR? Part II

Now a motivational speaker is exactly that, someone to stir the blood, to give you the motivation and inspiration to do the things you already knew you had to do and if done well the motivation will last long enough to get some of those tasks completed and hopefully you will retain 10% of that initial motivation over the long term.

A business coach is a different kettle of fish. These people are giving advice that could affect the rest of your life and they are using your money to do it. A business coach must be significantly experienced in your business and have the strength of character to say “Hey that is not my area of expertise; you should get independent advice for that. Here are some people I recommend and have worked with before”

A business coach should be a generalist within your business. Operations is a good basis for a business coach due to the fact that they deal with all parts of the business on a daily basis and will generally be able to steer you in the right direction for those areas where a true expert is needed. Legal and financial are two areas that come to mind.

So if you are looking for a business coach. STOP. Think about why you believe you need one. Lack of experience is a good reason. Running out of ideas to grow sales is not. With some online search and networking you can usually get some new ideas to help with sales. Hey you can even talk to me. It won’t cost you anything…… for now.

If you still think you need a business coach then make sure you do your research. Look for someone who has significantly more experience than you and is in a similar business. If you are in the convenience food industry a restaurant coach may not be the best choice to help you. Check references and make sure they have successfully helped businesses such as yours.

Do you need local help or are the issues you face better dealt with by someone with multi-concept experience. It is sometimes better to learn from outside of your concept. People think differently in different concepts and ideas from one concept can often work just as well in something totally different.

How much can you afford and what return on investment do you expect. Sit down and work it out on a scrap of paper. You may find that it is just not worth the time effort and money.

To tell you the truth, the best business coaches are often peers within your own business. Search out the successful ones and ask them for an hour a week of their time over the next 6 weeks. Take them out to dinner and wrack their brains once a week. You will develop a mentor and friend and save thousands.

Most importantly check the credentials of the business coach. An MBA or experience in presenting means little in our business unless they have done the hard yards just like you. Have they ever owned their own business, worked the 16 hour days, 7 days a week for months on end with their home on the line if something goes wrong. They should at least have an understanding of what the consequences are if their advice is wrong.

Good luck and good hunting.

RSteven