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TOPIC: Does This Sound Right To You?

Does This Sound Right To You? 27 Dec 2001 12:01 #23081

  • take2
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The other night I had a woman bring her small child to see "Lord of the Rings." After about the first 45 minutes the child began to act up and was getting on peoples nerves. A couple came down to the office and complained so I had to ask the woman to leave.
I refunded her money for the ticket and told her that she could come back any time to see the movie as long as the child was left behind. I thought I acted in a proper fashion but she still was upset and went storming out of the theater.
Was this the right way to handle the situation or was I missing something. I hate it when people leave my theater unhappy.
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Re: Does This Sound Right To You? 27 Dec 2001 13:48 #23082

  • BECKWITH1
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I feel your pain! My head tells me that I can't keep everyone happy even though I try, but I always feel bad for the rest of the day when something has not gone well with a customer.

We have also observed that Lord of the Rings is too scary for the smallest audience members and have started warning parents bringing in tiny kids that this is rated PG-13 for battle scenes and scary elements. Some think better and leave. Others bring the kids in, but end up leaving with a passes after 30 minutes or so. Unfortunately, this looks to be splitting families where Dad and the older kids stay while Mom and the younger kid(s) leave and come back 3 hours later to pick up the rest of the family. We haven't yet had to ask anyone to leave, but the possibility is there. You can only do your best to tactfully explain that the other audience members are complaining to you and you need to ask her to see if she can control the kids or whether they need to leave. Always offer passes and say that that way she can come back at another time that would work better for her. She probably wasn't having fun watching the movie with her kid acting up either anyway and just needs a graceful way to deal with the situation. But you never know! She might have just had a fight with a family member before she came to the movie and wasn't in the mood to be told that she needed to deal with another problem. You can't tell, you can only do your best.

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Re: Does This Sound Right To You? 28 Dec 2001 23:27 #23083

  • Avalon
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Take2, you're asking the right question: Did you handle it as well as possible? The answer is yes, now put it out of your mind. There is a species of human that has learned if they bitch enough, they get what they want. They specialize in making people feel badly for telling them "no." You dealt with it properly, now move on to the next problem.

Last night I sold out for "Amelie." I'm a hundred-seat art house (50k pop. university town), I was here alone. After I get the show on the screen someone I know as a cronic complainer walks in and wants into the show. I have a lit-up sold-out sign with a flashing stobe over the door. Even Ray Charles couldn't miss it (apologies if that offends anyone, but it makes the point nicely). She wants in. I tell her were sold-out. She goes into a diatribe about it being a crime that a "sh***y little theater like this gets such a popular film since we're too small to service the community." She was crusing for a free pass, I guessed. Instead, I said, "This conversation is over." Then I went up to the booth. I watched her blow out of the place in a rage on my security camera. Felt serious pity to whom ever she was going home to that night. There will always be an element that will never get it. Never give them more time than they are worth.
Paul Turner
Avalon Cinema
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Re: Does This Sound Right To You? 29 Dec 2001 16:53 #23084

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Here here, Avalon. You have to know when too much is enough. I am still learning.

1. I try to resolve the problem.

2. I try to apologize that the other person is feeling slighted.

3. Once I have tried to fix the problem and apologized for my obvious shortcomings, I lose sympathy. I have told only a couple of my patrons that their behavior is unacceptable and that the coversation is over! I wish I had the mental speed to have told many more.
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