Received a complaint about our pork this am. Not about the taste or the way it was raised or even the price we charge ($3.25 per pound hanging weight) No, the complaint was about the size, the hog carcass was too small.
The customer, who does indeed drive a long way to get her meat at the locker we use in Eureka Illinois, was very disappointed that her hams were small and there was not enough meat left over for the sausage she ordered.
I felt bad and quickly took responsibility for our not communicating with her that the hogs were going to be smaller this time. They do grow slower in the winter. It would have made a difference to her, she might have put off her order until she could have had a larger hog with more meat to take home to her family.
I followed up with a 20% refund check to offset at least her gas expense for traveling so far for such small results. Hopefully I have kept a customer.
But, in the 4-5 minutes it took me to listen to this woman, accept responsibility for our mistake and then make it right with her via a refund, I wondered...why can't I be so accepting of responsibility with those I love so much, those closet to me, my own family?
How is it, I can accept blame, ask for forgiveness and offer an act of kindness as proof of my concern so easily for someone I have never met before but cannot easily admit when I am wrong with my own children, siblings or husband ?
Well, sometimes I admit it but certainly not very often and even more certainly not without a great big long discussion where I drag out charts and graphs and statistical reports that will prove indubitably that my family member has to be at least HALF as responsible for the miscommunication as I am.
What is that defensiveness all about? It went so well with this customer. She was very disappointed when she called, she was absolutely right in the matter, I said I was sorry and would make it better and it was OVER. But with those we love, those who stand by us when we are at our ugliest, our sickest, our most needy times, disagreements and bad feelings, burdens of proof can go on for weeks, months or years and perhaps without ever being resolved.
So when we think a situation is about the size of a ham steak, it really is much more about who is being the bigger pig.
Oink Oink says she.