Is Better Always Better?

This post is more of a question (and maybe a rant) since I don’t actually have a solution!  Here’s my thought process and why I decided to write about this:

Sitting in Starbucks, as I often do, I have started to notice how loud it has become.  I go to Starbucks because I like the buzz of the crowd, I like the vibe and I like the products.  Their coffee has always been fresh, but recently they decided to step it up a notch and start grinding coffee fresh for each pot that they brew.  Previously they would grind enough coffee for the day or at least for a number of hours, but in their quest to be even more fresh, they grind each and every pot of coffee as it’s needed.

No doubt this has take the quality level up a notch, but there’s a trade-off.  The noise of the grinder is thoroughly irritating!  Some of the grinders sound like they’ve seen better days; they rattle and make uncomfortably loud noises before they’re done.  They’re so loud that if you are having a conversation with a friend or colleague, you have to stop your conversation or start yelling across the table.

From the standpoint of wanting to offer the freshest product to their customers, grinding each batch is a winner.  But what about the unintended consequences of this decision?  If they are trying to make customers leave, it works (and maybe they want people leaving sooner to free up seats?)

The moral of the story is this;  Our world and our businesses are in a state of constant improvement.  Businesses that aren’t doing this are the ones that are failing or losing touch with their customers, but when does better actually work against you?  It’s a question that every business must ask before taking the step to improve their business.  This is why it’s important that companies & businesses look through their plans to upgrade and improve with a fine tooth comb to make sure that all points have been covered.

Do you know of any examples when better isn’t actually better?  Comments are appreciated!


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