When I arrived, the restaurant was packed and we were told we'd have to
wait a short while for a seat. The wait ended up being a minute or two, and in
the interim we were offered a selection of donut holes.
This place doesn't make people wait to get fed, Andy said. He
explained that depending on the time of day a selection of extras were offered
to diners, everything from donut holes to prunes. After dinner, customers were
given a free scoop of ice cream.
"I mention this place in my book," Andy said. "Donut holes are not
much, but it makes a difference to people. People will talk about it with their
In the end, a rational economic analysis would say that donut holes, prunes, and free ice cream are a cheap way to buy goodwill. But that's not the point. The point is that these little perks are a reflection of an attitude of generosity and caring for the customer...and they are a hell of a way to generate goodwill and word of mouth.
Whether you're running a business, or simply trying to manage your social life, take 5 minutes to think about how you can create a (genuine) reputation for generosity and abundance, simply by showing a little kindness and courtesy.