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I think you need to speak to Danny

The funny thing about blogging is that you have to be pretty honest. There’s nothing interesting in talking about oneself in the third person (see what I did there!), or glossing over some of the more dubious aspects of your personality. Unless you’re an objective reporter of facts – and it’s quite clear that I’m not – it’s my guess that people are not particularly interested in what I think unless I’m aware of, and happy to talk about, my often glaring, less than perfect, characteristics.

So here’s one for the melting pot: I am often completely incapable of dealing with criticism. I say ‘often’ because there is no denying that I have had moments when I can nod demurely, accept your point, and take it on the chin like a human being with a regular sized ego. More often than not however, my blood starts to boil, defensive platitudes come streaming out of my mouth, and I struggle to not say what I think immediately and save it for what I might think about 15 minutes down the line. I’ve heard it referred to as a brain-to-mouth filter and I don’t mean to make excuses but I think mine is missing.

I would like to clarify, for those of you who don’t know me, that I’m happy to put my hand up and admit that I’ve made a mistake; yet when I’ve poured my heart and soul into something and I believe in what I’ve done 150%, constructive criticism, no matter how well meant, does not go down very well, as those of you who have emailed me about the website will testify.

At this point you might be wondering why I’ve chosen to go into an industry where the customer is always right; and don’t think I haven’t wondered that very same thing myself. If I admit it (and I’m quite loathe to as I know how self-important and egotistical it sounds) I actually don’t believe that anyone will find anything to complain about at Little Leaf.

WOW – I really think that if I listen hard enough I can hear potential readers of this blog laughing a LOT. Yes, I am deluded. I know full well that out there, just around the corner, is a potential guest waiting to complain about something. They might not like breakfast, they might have an allergy to the washing powder we use, they might not like the room, or we may forget to put spare toilet paper in the en-suite on precisely the wrong day.

Yes, I’m sure there will be plenty of complaints and criticisms – no more so than in the pre-opening week (31st March – 4th April) where we will actually be asking people for their opinion. I foresee a period of uncomfortable, personal growth ahead.

Luckily, and I know this isn’t the first time I’ve said this, I have Danny: Danny who genuinely enjoys listening to other people’s opinions, never disregards an idea, and is ever the diplomat. Stubborn as an ox (I can’t allow him to come across as too much of a saint) I am still surprised by his innate ability to be nice to absolutely everybody, and have never heard him get defensive when confronted with a complaint or piece of ‘constructive’ criticism.

It’s pretty clear that I have a lot to learn when it comes to diplomacy; but until I’ve learnt that lesson I will be smiling, nodding, and suggesting that you need to speak to Danny.

Ann Landrey says:

P.S. I found you through Cornish Story Winter 2010.

Ann Landrey says:

1. The customer is not always right and,
2. Even if the customer has a crumb of rightness on his/her/its chin,
3. The Complaint Department is closed. Turn the notional sign around in your head. This works for me, hope it helps.

Ann Patey says:

What an honest post. Well they say opposites attract so it must be part of the reason you and Danny are so good together.

Good luck with the opening, any bookings yet?


Daniel says:

Having this blog and sharing your personality with us and your (pontential) clients seems not to be the worst idea to me as it might be that special something that makes Little Leaf a bit more personal than other B&Bs and thus make the crucial distinction when opting for a stay in Cornwall…

Apart from that, you haven’t chosen to go into an industry where the client is always right for the first time. Or would you say the clients of R*room and M*matics where wrong at any point? 😉

Sally Leigh says:

I’ll come and visit when I can and possibly bring my tribe with me.
Hope it goes well. It is very very very exciting.
Lots of love to both of you, Sally

John says:

I really can’t resist this… have you considered pouring your heart and very essence of Lee into the blog may not be the best thing to do!