A second e-mail from the Gourmet Food Store

December 20th, 2007 at 6:40 am by David Farrar

The Southland Times has a story on the e-mail from Margaret McHugh of the Gourmet Food Company to a staffer at Ray White.

Well a second e-mail has just hit the inboxes – involving a different customer, back in mid September.

This one starts with an e-mail of complaint from a staffer at Trust Investments Management Limited.

Hello Margaret

Thank you for catering the breakfast for us on Thursday 6 September 2007.

We ordered this breakfast from you based on the very good quality and presentation of the first breakfast and lunch you supplied.

Unfortunately, we were disappointed with both the quality and presentation of the breakfast supplied, and we wish to comment as follows:

· Baps filled – We received filled Muffins instead. These were too big and unattractive with minimal filling.

· Filled Pockets – Supplied as requested but were not fresh and the fillings were messy; some pockets had strips of bacon which consisted of fat and rind.

· The Savory and Sweet Mini Muffins were a little tough.

· The Muesli slices were very nice.

· The Fresh Fruit platter which was ordered later, was also disappointing, for example the ends of the orange were included which consisted mainly of the white plinth.

We would appreciate if, in future our request cannot be met, you contact us to discuss alternatives/options.

Thank you

Then the first reply, which as per the other e-mail attacks rather than acts on the complaint:

I am sorry you were not happy with your clients breakfast, I am rather confused to say the least that you waited 4 1/2 days to inform me you were disappointed in the consumed breakfast food, it is rather unbelievable. If I was so unhappy I would have been on the telephone immediately and had the food replace forthwith. Of which I would have been more than pleased to do after having seen it again for myself.

Re fruit platter what is white Plinth. The only Plinth I know of is a square slab at the base of a column or pedestal. If you wish to discuss this further I am on the numbers below please don’t send an email it is so time consuming and impersonal . Regards Margaret

Then a reply back:

Hello Margaret

Thanks for your reply. The breakfast on Thursday 6 September commenced 7.30, the food was delivered at 7.20. Many of our guests had already arrived.

Could you have provided a replacement breakfast in 10 minutes?

The 4 ½ days to inform you of our disappointment included a 2-day weekend.

All in all we are surprised with the unprofessional response to our complaint.

Thank you

Now we get the flamer.  Note the pattern with both employees – threatening to get them in trouble with their bosses. Also I love the suggestion the food should have been preserved in case it had been tampered with!

I guess because I am the boss I can speak truthfully and not be afraid for my job, Does your boss know you are wasting their time emailing petty nonsense. In my 30 yrs as a successfully trained professional caterer I have never had to respond to such nonsense.

Please don’t use Gourmet Food Store again we are not used to part timers who have to much time on their hands,have no understanding, good manners and common sense in dealing with a complaint there and then. You never gave us an opportunity to amend what you said was wrong, we or course were never given the food to make an assessment of our own just some nicely typed out letter fully or criticism with no proof, not good enough !!!!!! The food could have been tampered with for all we know.

May I suggest in closing you spend a little more time in finding the word your were looking for in English relating to the orange so I can ask my supplier to remove it before he sends them to me in future.

I’ve also heard from a friend that she has had a similar e-mail in the past also. Looks like a pattern here!

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34 Responses to “A second e-mail from the Gourmet Food Store”

  1. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    This is different from this other day when silly dumb haley was too stupid to reply to a confirmation request.

    This is simply an example of commercial darwinism – where the fitest survive and the stupid fail. I feel sorry for the employees

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  2. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Ms McHugh clearly has no interest in making the customer or their money feel valued.

    Ms McHugh reflects the cultural beliefs of the leaders of our society.

    Ie ‘I’ve got the power, you don’t count.’

    ie Classic example of someone who believes they have a job for life, so that those who contribute to their livlihood can go f**k themselves.

    Uh uh I can feel a parliamentary analogy coming on…..

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  3. tim barclay (886 comments) says:

    This is a business that does not wish to be around for very long. The “boss” of this Goumet Food Store can be well satisfied that anyone reading this exchange will not use their business also. I suggest she/he simply hand the business over to the creditors now.

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  4. Insolent Prick (417 comments) says:

    Is Margaret’s maiden name Mallard, by any chance?

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  5. the deity formerly known as nigel6888 (852 comments) says:

    really Barry? How is it different? It sounds remarkably similar. Customer dares to ask a question or voice a word of complaint, and manic marg launches at them.

    Or maybe the event organiser at Trust Investments Management is an airhead too?

    Seems remarkably similar to me. As Tim says this is a woman who doesnt want to be in business.

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  6. Pascal (1,969 comments) says:

    http://www.gourmetfoodstore.co.nz/

    Well. It’s certainly very … Green. And flashing. With scrolling banners. It is as Barry says, Commercial Darwinism in action. The internet is such an effective communications tool that high profile acknowlements like Kiwiblog, Sideswipe and so forth will actually be very damaging.

    As an aside, the people from Square Meals cater for some of my colleagues for a working lunch. There’s nothing in it for me, but they *do* provide damn fine service and food. If you live / work in the Auckland region, it’s well worth looking at them.

    http://www.squaremeals.co.nz/

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  7. Camryn (543 comments) says:

    She seems to hate email as much as she hates her customers. In both cases, she tries to get them to call her and doesn’t really start flaming until they send a second email instead. She’s obviously of the type that doesn’t like email and doesn’t understand it (hence being caught out by the ‘viral’ spread).

    She should also refrain from throwing vocabulary stones from within her glass house of poor grammar.

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  8. Dave Mann (1,218 comments) says:

    Quite apart from this woman’s arrogant and overbearing arritude (which speaks for itself), I have to say that I am stunned and amazed that she has such a poor standard of english.

    I assume ‘plinth’ was meant to be ‘pith’. But that was the only error on the customer’s side. This McHugh woman, however, seems entirely incapable of potting together a sentence and her emails are riddled with execrable grammar, spelling and punctuation to the point almost of semi-literacy.

    I have noticed this all over the business world and frankly this appalling standard of english makes feel sick.

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  9. Dave Mann (1,218 comments) says:

    Hahaha! I’ve been caught out myself! Of course, I meant to type ‘attitude’!!! Geez, its easy to hit the send button isn’t it??? OK.. anyway, I still think McHugh’s standard of english is terrible, but I’ll take a lesson from my ‘arritude’!

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  10. Dave Mann (1,218 comments) says:

    …. and never let it be said that I can’t ‘pot’ together a sentence either! :-(

    After this I have decided to ban myself from commenting on this blog for 72 hours.

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  11. Murray (8,847 comments) says:

    Certainly she doesn’t understand the net. If she did she would have pulled her email address from the site by now.

    And what four year old did her web design?

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  12. rfhoward (497 comments) says:

    Businesses with attitudes like this amaze me. There is a saying in business “It is easy to lose 100 customers but hard to pick up an extra one”.

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  13. ExecutiveAssistant (5 comments) says:

    Oh my god, this bitch just keeps on going. hahahahaaha. Who cares how late the response was from the client about how dissappointed they were, the fact that they provided valuable feedback is better late than never. And by they way the client DID give gourmet food an opportunity to amend the f***k up by sending them an email telling them exactly what was wrong so they wouldn’t do it again. As an Exec Assistant myself, I will never use this company, and I will now take it upon myself to tell all my colleagues in other companies about this supplier. Marg needs to get a life and realise. Support staff book and organise the catering for all companies and bosses and continually recommend good service to eachother, hell there’s even an annual PA conference in Wellington which all the top PA’s go to, you can bet Gourmet Food won’t be catering that. There are more support staff in New Zealand than there are Caterers. Get a hint!

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  14. Michaels (1,318 comments) says:

    I am not defend GFS at all but…. in Margaret’s first email back, she asked the customer not to reply by email again, however she did, can this be classified as spam??

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  15. Pascal (1,969 comments) says:

    Dave Mann: After this I have decided to ban myself from commenting on this blog for 72 hours

    Nah, it’s a rule of the internet. Any post made to correct someone’s spelling or grammar will always contain at least one error. It happens.

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  16. gd (2,286 comments) says:

    From the website it looks like a fat bitch who ate all her muffins It emails like a fat bitch who ate all her muffins.

    By gosh it is a fat bitch

    Id say Queenstown Councils well rid of it.I wouldnt want it on a Council in an area I live.

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  17. ghostwhowalks (377 comments) says:

    This magnificent woman is given a hard time because she speaks her mind.

    Funny how Bill English was given a soft pass when he spoke his mind when his son had some intemperate outbursts online.

    Where are the people saying shes running a business and employing people so go easy on her.

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  18. Billy (121 comments) says:

    That’s right ghostwhowalks, this is a political issue. FFS. Cue TomS blatering on about how the food store is part of the capitalist conspiracy against the working class. Tane could wade in with a “DPF what’s your game?” for good measure.

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  19. helmet (807 comments) says:

    Excellent point GWW, you’re a fuckin’ prodigy, but with some heart thrown in there too.

    This woman and Bill English’s kid are totally comparable.

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  20. Bok (740 comments) says:

    It is quite amusing to see GWW take the side of the filthy capitalist employer against the poor employees of another firm whom she lambasts. Oh the solidarity of the workers… or should I say GWW just goes onto auto pilot and gain says anything posted on this blog. Sad really.

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  21. Bok (740 comments) says:

    filthy capitalist employer should have been in “”

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  22. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Spot the attention seeker….

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  23. Max Call (212 comments) says:

    and if she doesn’t like communicating via email WHY DID SHE REPLY IN EMAIL.

    If I got an email like that (as a business owner) I would be straight on the phone.

    I also don’t blame trust employee for replying via email because GFS woman sounds psycho and email is less confrontational.

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  24. ghostwhowalks (377 comments) says:

    Every week Gordon Ramsay is on TV with his hard time for those in the kitchen. he is as well known for ‘correcting’ customers who dont know the first thing about food offering up uninformed criticism..

    THis ‘customer is allways right’ ethic is most often spouted by those who really dont have to deal with them all day.

    I make a point of praising people in call centres that I deal with, after all its the shoddy corporate policies that they have to front with that are the problem not the individuals

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  25. helmet (807 comments) says:

    Good on ya GWW, everyone ought to be just like you and Gordon Ramsay.

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  26. ExecutiveAssistant (5 comments) says:

    Well until Marg McHugh earns thousands per show and has her own cookbook and celebrity talk show appearances, I’ll err on the side of caution and take mine, and my company’s business elsewhere. And while the phrase “the customer is always right” is something which escapes the ethical foundations of Ms McHugh, I prefer to think “the customer always pays”, the customer always pays my wages, my mortgage and my lifestyle. Get a hint!

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  27. ExecutiveAssistant (5 comments) says:

    “Margaret McHugh Owner/Operator of Gourmet Food Store
    is very much hands on in her kitchens to ensure that her customer’s receive the best of food and service”. Taken from gourmetfood.co.nz.

    Can this be classed as false advertising?

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  28. helmet (807 comments) says:

    The customer always pays? Sheesh I gotta get me a business like that.

    Who do you work for mate? IRD?

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  29. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Quite a life lesson actually

    This email story has been all over the radio and tv.

    This woman will be moving to Oz in the new year.

    Her age and technology unsophistication is appallingly apparent.
    She has no idea everyone to Helen Clark and the Beehive to Joe Bloggs drinking his cheap sherry at Hamiltons East Side park knows all about her.

    Surely a rude awakening to the 21st century is awaiting her.

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  30. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Hmm,

    wonder if she’s read this thread.

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  31. the deity formerly known as nigel6888 (852 comments) says:

    yup, you don’t mess with the PA mafia

    :)

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  32. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    “Surely a rude awakening to the 21st century is awaiting her.”

    Good then she’ll know what it’s like to be on the receiving end, and maybe change her snotty attitude.

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  33. ExecutiveAssistant (5 comments) says:

    Who do you work for mate? IRD?

    Yea right like IRD always gets paid by it’s customers. hahahahahaaha. And I reckon, those customers who don’t pay are probably the ones who get silly emails from suppliers telling them they were bottled feed until their late teens. hahahahaaha. that cracks me up, silly tart.

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  34. helmet (807 comments) says:

    Good point EA, I guess you got me there.

    But then, I don’t have the wealth and experience of an, um, executive assistant, so I defer to your greatness.

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