As a consumer, it occurs to me that there are some careers where one definitely wants to be left waiting, and others where this is unacceptable. For example, when it comes to Surgeons, I absolutely do NOT want to go to their office, ER, or Surgical Center and find them anxiously waiting on me. Setting down their FaceBook or Candy Crush, they proclaim “I am SO glad you made it today, I WAS SO BORED today.”. I would find this “concerning”, if not downright “distressing”.
Likewise, when I am filing my taxes with the IRS, I prefer the services of an accountant who has a messy desk. Though I do demand a certain level of order, organization, politeness, and customer service, I would rather not have an Attorney (Thank you again, Angela) who is sitting next to the phone awaiting my call.
Sometimes, when folks are busy, it is because they are good at what they do. I want THOSE competent performers in my life.
Now, there are OTHER jobs where waiting for service is a problem. Paramedics, Law Enforcement, and Firefighters leap to mind. Similarly, I would not want to sit next to a busy Interstate for hours waiting for a Tow Truck driver.
A Server in a busy restaurant poses a challenging problem on this topic. On one hand, the restaurant is good (or trendy, at least), and busy. That indicates that you are in a good place to eat. The slow service might be attributable to the fact that your Server is out back, smoking (possibly tobacco), while your order sits and fades away under a red heat lamp, with Mel ringing a bell and screaming “ALICE! Pickup!”.
But then again, maybe the slow service is the fault of an excellent and overworked kitchen. Who knows? Why exactly do we pay Servers below minimum wage, and hold them responsible for things they may or may no control?
I would absolutely wait for my food, happily and patiently if Gordon Ramsey were the chef. Wait 4 hours for a cable guy to drill a hole and install 2.5 feet of wire in my wall? Not as much patience.
I think that tells us that the skill and talent matter. If you are in a job where you are feeling overwhelmed and flooded, then maybe it says that you are talented and good at what you do. Looked at a certain way, this is a GOOD problem.
How to deal with the issue is for another article, which is forthcoming.
Good luck and best wishes,