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Kindness in a Can

September 12 2008 | by


I was taking the Greyhound bus from Boston to New York earlier this week, and the bus driver decided to stop at Arby’s for dinner – my favorite place (NOT!) This is a roast beef chain where, I’m told, the meat comes out of a can. Like Playdoh. I was placing an order of chicken fingers, when Arby’s saving grace appeared to me in a laminated sign just above the cash registers. It read something like this:

If you need help with anything please don’t hesitate to ask us.
If you’re visually impaired we can read you the menu aloud.
If you’re hearing impaired we can speak slower or offer you a pen and paper to write down your order.
If you’re mobility impaired we can bring your food to your table.

I read this notice a few times, then looked over at the teenagers at the cash register, and then spotted the shift manager. I may be over-generalizing, but I sensed a kindness and camrardarie among the workers that isn’t as visible at other chains, like McDonald’s. You know, when good business decisions are made from the top-down it really has an affect on employees’ attitudes. Watching the workers in play, I could envision Arby’s Corporate holding disability-sensitivity training, which is a great step in building awareness and know-how. I didn’t need assistance that night with my chicken fingers, but I felt a certain sense of relief knowing that I could ask a teenager at a fast-food chain to sympathize with my cause if need be. Kudos to Arby’s, even if it’s food comes out of a can.

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