I tried a new breakfast place on Sunday. The server was friendly, the food came out quickly, and everything tasted right. But nobody offered a single refill of coffee after the food arrived, so we sat there with empty coffee cups for quite some time. During that span, our server was apparently on break, but at least two other servers walked by several times each. One of them even sang Happy Birthday to a customer in the table next to us.

From what I can see, the management and staff at this restaurant have yet to recognize the value of teamwork in a service business. With a small amount of extra effort, the servers could fill up other tables’ coffee cups as they walk by, rather than being blind to these other customers. Sure, it wouldn’t increase the tips for their own tables, but more customers would leave happy. Ultimately, that means more tables filled and more revenues to go around. But as it stands today, I’m certainly not going back.

Teamwork is a huge asset when you’re trying to deliver a consistent experience for customers, as others on the team can compensate for one person’s off day. Experiences like mine, where teamwork is nonexistant, serve to illustrate just how powerful this impact can be.