Had enough of negative reviews: landlord Dirk Luttmann (56), …
«If you would like to contribute something to this problem, we look forward to receiving your application as a service assistant. But you’re probably also one of those people who aren’t incredibly motivated to go to work on weekends or in the evenings. After all, it’s a lot easier to look at the situation from the guest’s point of view and make a few quick jokes.” That is the answer from landlord Dirk Luttmann (56) to a critical review on the Internet.
The owner of the Uto Staffel restaurant on the Uetliberg is currently in the headlines. The online portal Watson wrote a long report about his restaurant. The article focuses on Luttmann’s answers to critical reviews. The landlord always writes back in detail and sarcastically, sometimes aiming below the waistline. Blick visited him on the Uetliberg.
Host makes critics public
“I expected that my reviews would end up in the media at some point,” says Luttmann. “What I no longer want to accept are anonymous reviews that people can hide behind.” That is also the reason why he outed the anonymous scribblers.
But Luttmann not only names their names, which he can look up in his own booking system. He has also put telephone numbers on the Internet and mentioned the employers of authors. As he knows the job of the comment writers? Luttmann googles the guests who rate him negatively.
“In personal dialogue”
Nicolas Kern (63), President of Gastro Stadt Zürich, does not agree with this approach. «A conflict with a guest should not be carried out in public, but in personal dialogue. That’s why I ask the author of negative reviews on platforms for a personal email. »
Kern runs the Degenried business at the Dolder in Zurich and urges prudence: “It’s better not to react to bad reviews at all than with a negative answer.” However, Kern also makes the guests responsible: “Criticism always has something positive, but it must not be rude or below the belt.”
Negative reviews are increasing
The host of the restaurant Uto Staffel emphasizes that he can live with a critical review if it is factual. It is a fact that his restaurant was also affected by the shortage of skilled workers. “My answers are not meant in a bad way, I don’t wish anything bad on anyone either,” he clarified in an interview with Blick.
In recent years, the negative reviews have increased, which Luttmann also sees as a means of exerting pressure on guests. “It happens that a customer threatens with a bad review if we don’t do this or that now,” he explains. In his early days as a restaurateur, that was not the case. “I think it’s because of people’s dissatisfaction. Or it’s out of boredom.” In his opinion, it is clear that the rating platforms on the Internet encourage such behavior.
Improvement thanks to criticism
Luttmann does not like the media hype. “The negative comments are not funny for our staff either.” He has employees who have been working for him at Uto Staffel for over ten years. “If we weren’t a good employer or didn’t pay fair wages, they wouldn’t have been here for so long. So we’re definitely doing things right.”
And maybe even better in the future if he heeds the advice of colleague Kern: “We in the catering industry also benefit from criticism. If nobody tells us what we’re doing badly, we can’t improve either.”
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