Is Your Restaurant Too Noisy For Business?
How Can You Network if the Music is too loud?
Eat, drink and be… stressed
Have you ever sat in a restaurant where the thumping bass has made it so you can’t carry on a conversation? Or you have to shout or worse – carry on your conversation via text?
Me: Do you mind turning the music down?
Me: Do you mind turning it down!
Me: Do you mind turning it down!!
Server: Hunh, I can’t hear you.
Read my lips
We’ve been hearing from lots of readers complaining about how noisy restaurants have become. The too loud music forces people to shout which makes it even more noisy.
5 stars for food… 0 stars for volume
In our networking and dining etiquette seminars, we now have added a new tip and criteria for choosing a good restaurant for business dining; the noise level.
Are we just too old school?
Is it just because we’re getting older? No, volume of music is on the rise in restaurants. Faster paced music is believed to make you eat faster and consume more alcohol.
The customer may not be part of the equation
Music level and type is often chosen for the staff’s comfort and not necessarily, with you, the patron in mind.
Keeping it down
A recent Canadian Sunday Edition radio show did a documentary called Keeping it Down – Loud Music in Restaurants, click here to listen to the ear opening 15 min audio program.
They interviewed Hans Schmidt from Vancouver who started the Right to Quiet Society has developed some special business style cards that might be of help. One card reinforces good behavior and the other makes clear your reason for taking your business elsewhere.
Carrot and stick
We believe in voting with our pocket book and avoiding restaurants where we can’t converse. These cards let the owner/manager know why you may or may not come back. Terry and I haven’t used them yet, but we might start. The managers can read your complaint… even if they can’t hear them.
Here is a link to Quiet.org where you can download and print their noise suggestion cards.
Their website also lists quiet places to eat and stay (don’t get us started on noisy hotels). Have you ever left a restaurant because of acoustics. What are your thoughts or tips?
Posted by Joanne Blake – Canadian corporate image consultant and quiet dining aficionado