I took a spontaneous trip to North Carolina to surprise my dear friend Tasha for her birthday. The surprise was a success! We had less than 72 hours to hangout and talk to our hearts content, so we did just that. We talked, laughed, ate a lot of southern deep fried food, and slept as little as possible. It was a perfect weekend!
My all time favorite thing we did together was go to The King’s Kitchen for dinner. As delicious as the food was, that is not what did it for me, it was our waiter. He taught us some incredible things that night.
Let me back up just a little.
Tasha was trying to decide where we should go for dinner. The King’s Kitchen wasn’t on her radar, but as she was looking restaurants up, it popped up. She instantly remembered that this was a place that her friend had raved about. So King’s Kitchen it was!
Tasha filled me in on her friend’s ravings; The King’s Kitchen is a restaurant with a mission. They hire people who most likely wouldn’t be hired somewhere else, they teach them how to be good employees and how to work, and then they help them find a job elsewhere. The money made by this restaurant goes to running the restaurant and feeding the poor. Once I was filled in, I couldn’t wait to go and experience it myself.
Our waiter was the best! He was genuine, sincere, kind, patient, attentive, and helpful. He took our order and left. At the same time, Tasha and I looked at each other and said, “He’s awesome!” We talked about the power of a compliment and how we needed to tell him, but I never expected what happened next.
The next time he came to our table, Tasha said, “We were just talking and you are the best waiter we’ve ever had. “With complete surprise and excitement visible in his eyes he said, “Really?!?!” I wish I could have recorded the experience, but his response will be forever ingrained in my mind. If you’ve seen the part on the movie Elf about the “World’s Best Coffee”, you can somewhat picture his response. He wasn’t vocally loud and shouting, but you could tell his insides were.
He left and we were smiling ear to ear, but what happened next is what really impacted us, his manager came to the table and lightheartedly said, “I just have to confirm that what I heard was what really happened. I heard you said he was the best waiter you’ve ever had. Is that true?” We looked at each other and smiled and then unanimously confirmed his inquiry. We laughed and talked a little and then he was back to work.
Our waiter taught us that night, the power of a simple compliment. Something so simple, completely made his day. The rest of the night, he walked with a pep in his step. His confidence visibly changed.
Tears came to my eyes as I thought of the tender mercy of meeting this incredible guy and the powerful lessons he taught me in the short time we shared that night.
We tipped him well, and we hope he always remembers how awesome he is, and I hope always remember the power of a simple compliment!