Although the following event might sound directly out of a fairy tale book or like a prefect example of “how to create true customer loyalty” let me reassure you that everything is true and it happened last Wednesday evening.
Meeting a long time friend after almost a year to celebrate the birth of his first child, we were looking for a suitable place to catch up on old times and having some special food. By chance we found Maharaja, an Indian restaurant rather close to the Konan exit of the Shinagawa station. The restaurant looked rather full, so we were sure to have found a good tasting place. When entering one of the managers told us “sorry, but the restaurant is not open until tomorrow, as we are simply having a company invited guests only event now.” In my mind, I thought too bad, but I will be back as the restaurant looked really good. While leaving the restaurant, I noticed that the lady in the picture (president of Maharaja) hastily talked to the manager and we were called back. “It is not a good omen to ask people to leave on the opening party. Please come in and enjoy dinner with us!” Of course I was speechless and humbled by their business approach.
I have to say we had a marvelous evening at the restaurant and many good discussions with the manager of this store (Jagdish Punjabi, in the middle of the picture) and the manager of the Marunouchi store (Bisht Manoj, on the right). From the bottom of my heart I wish not only my good friend’s daughter a wonderful life, but as well the whole Maharaja restaurant group a prosperous future. For sure I will never forget this dinner! By simply being kind to a stranger, providing us with a rememberable, delicious dinner and even not allowing us to pay, this act of kindness needs high praise! For me personally this is a perfect example on how to create customer loyalty. Next time when you go out, remember that you have a choice of which restaurant you want to promote. Focus on those restaurants that let you feel welcome and of course have great food.
For sure “the Maharaja” stole my heart and I have now a favorite Indian restaurant in Tokyo! Let’s say hi when we meet there.
Sending my deepest thanks and admiration to the Maharaja team!
Sibylle Ito (シビル伊藤)