In-N-Out Burger Sets the Standard for Remarkable Service

I just got out of the gym and ordered a “protein burger” from In n’ Out.

For you east coast folks out there; In N’ Out is our flagship burger chain here in the West Coast (mainly California and Nevada). There’s nothing quite like it in the U.S. (Esquire magazine echoed similar statements). When they opened shop in Reno, the line reached couple of blocks away.

They’re so fanatical in the quality of their burger it took them 50 years to open a restaurant in Reno (when they were already 200 miles away). Bad news for you Yankees. It’s going to take a while.

So I ordered the protein burger (instead of sponge buns, they use lettuce as ‘buns’) for $1.85.

And the pleasant looking girl asked if I wanted water to go with it. No Up-sells (not that it’s bad). No fancy terminologies. No 25 cents-for-extra-sauce-demands. Just plain and simple good service to match their magnificent burgers.

Not once do they miss little details like grilled onions instead of fresh – or giving you incomplete orders – I wish I can say the same thing with other fast food chains.

In my experience, remarkable experience have these components:

  • Fanatical leader: One who sets the vision and makes sure that it’s practiced throughout the company – from the CEO to the Server.
  • Incremental improvement instead of aiming for overnight success: They keep it simple. Constant improvement in reaching systematic remarkable experience.
  • Feedback: listening and acting on it. But they don’t try to please everybody. In-N-Out offers a tenth of what normal fast food chains have in their menus.
  • First things first: Customers, employees, profits.

I write about this because it inspires me to create something similar in my market. I’m a “little guy” business man who buys and sells real estate. But what’s stopping us from following these game changers?

I want to recreate this REMARKABLE experience in my business. From what I write online (initial contact) all the way to the closing – perhaps adding a nice In-N-Out gift certificate as a closing gift =)

Astana Kazakhstan and Its Remarkable Buildings

It’s time to visit Kazakhstan! The capital will astound you. Dubbed by CNN as the world’s weirdest capital, Astana seems like a playground of modern architecture. From a bird’s eye view, the profusion of uniquely designed edifices in different shapes, sizes and colors is itself worth the visit. From the ground, marvel at each point of interest, which are remarkably different from each other architecturally.

Perhaps the most iconic building in Astana is the Bayterek Monument. Nicknamed the Tree of Life, the Bayterek is an inspired work based on the Kazakh legend, where a tree of life grows on the World River bank and on its top is a nest of the Samruk, a holy bird of happiness. In this nest, the bird flies over to lay a golden egg. The Bayterek stands in the middle of the city at 97 meters high. For its creators, it is a tree with a big golden egg in a nest on its crown represented by a giant, wooden globe in shiny gold held by several petal-like structures. But for the locals, it simply is the giant Chupa Chups or lollipop as it does look like one.

Inside the tower are several entertainment facilities like aquariums, a gallery and a café perfect for a quick gastronomic respite. Try your best to get to the 86th floor as it offers the best 360-degree view of the city. A stroll around the tower is also delightful as you will be walking around geometrically arranged garden patches with flowers bursting in bright colors.

Another strikingly different and ultra-contemporary structure in the city is the Khan Shatyr Entertainment Center. It looks like a tent in a monumental scale, whose base is bigger than 10 football stadiums. Thus it is often considered the world’s largest tent. It is transparent and such effect was achieved not by the use of plastic but a fabric stretched and suspended by series of cables. The transparent feature makes a perfect containment of multi-colored lights that make a dramatic effect on the structure when seen in the evening. The inside holds a park, a shopping center, squares, cobbled streets, a boating river, a mini golf, and an indoor beach resort.

Definitely eye-catching for its resemblance to the Louvre in Paris, the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation also known as the Pyramid of Peace and Accord is another must-see, due to its structure and design as well as the idea and belief it stands for. It’s a 5- story glass pyramid where each triangle side measures about 12 meters. The upper two stories are interesting because of the flying dove design etched on them. When light passes through these doves, the reflections are truly magical. This unique structure and the ideaology that it was based on it to be admired and commended.

Every three years, the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions is held here. For the Kazakhs, the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation represents and reinforces their belief that various religion, cultures and traditions can thrive side by side peacefully. Aside from the congress held in its oval hall, the palace also contains an opera house with a 1,500 seat capacity, a national museum of culture, a library and a research center devoted to the Kazakhstan’s ethnic and geographical groups.

Astana also astonishes visitors with its other magnificent buildings like the Presidential Palace that resembles the White House, the colorful Duman Center, and the Nur-Astana Mosque. Make sure to bring your camera and capture the remarkable Astana structures.

Remarkable Short Story Of Prem Ganapathy

Prem Ganapathy traveled from the South Indian town, Chennai, to the dream city of Mumbai along with a friend to live a better life. However, just after reaching Mumbai, his friend ditched him and ran away leaving Prem stranded at the railway station. He did not know anyone in Mumbai and he also had trouble understanding and speaking the local dialect.

Taking pity on him, a fellow Mumbai resident guided Prem to a temple to help him get some money. But Prem did not allow himself to get deterred. He decided to start his career off by cleaning utensils at a restaurant. He later requested to be upgraded to the waiter position but because of regional politics, the owner did not oblige him.

Later, Prem got an opportunity to work as a waiter at an upcoming restaurant. He served tea to customers there. He nearly tripled the amount other waiters contributed to the restaurant.

A wealthy customer, who observed Prem for some time, introduced the idea of starting a new tea shop. In the new tea shop, the wealthy customer would be the financial partner to Prem and Prem would also manage the shop. Unfortunately, the business flourished but Prem was soon thrown out by the greedy partner.

Prem borrowed money and opened a shop with his brother. The shop had to be closed down due to objections by the neighbors. Prem’s efforts to sell tea from a hand cart also did not succeed.

Undeterred, Prem opened a stall for selling popular South Indian snacks called Dosas and Idlis. Though he did not know how to cook, he learned by observing and through trial and error. This stall was a big hit from 1992 to 1997 and there was no looking back. Impeccable hygiene, fresh ingredients and proper appearance of the waiters brought huge success to the business.

Prem tried his luck by opening a Dosa Plaza. He started serving 108 variations of the traditional dish called Dosa. Today, his Dosa Plaza has 26 outlets. There are over 150 employees who work for Prem. He also generates a huge turnover every year. All the stores in his plaza are networked and have proper standardized manuals for all the products and services that each store offers. Prem is currently evaluating franchise offers from the U.S. and Europe.

As you can see, this amazing entrepreneur has faced a lot of obstacles to get to where he is at now. He never gave up and he always tried to push forward, despite his friend leaving him stranded when he first arrived in Mumbai.