The story of our comment cards
Prior to 1985, Flying Pie had no comment cards. In 1985, Howard Olivier and Roger Baird (a manager and Flying Pie Pizzaria Hall of Fame member) set aside a few hours to brainstorm about comment cards. As a starting point, they got samples from several places and began to make a list of the things they liked about each one. At some point, one of the two of them got flustered and said, “How about this: It has a space to draw us a picture and room to write about The Good Stuff and The Bad Stuff?”
A startled silence followed, and then the actual phrase was crafted, about relating your experience by drawing a picture, and Howard and Roger ended the work session feeling pretty satisfied. What they didn’t know at the time was that they had created a template for a fantastic comment card that would serve us well for 20 years!
From 1985 to 1995, no changes were made to the comment card at all. Each year we printed more and more of them, but the wording and format stayed the same and each year the artwork became more amazing. Sometime in 1995, we got tired of people writing in the Bad Stuff: “Too much room for ‘bad stuff’”, so we modified the number of lines allotted to the two subjects*.
In 2000, we added to the “if you’d like a reply” line the option of giving us an email address.
In 2005 we added the 0 to 10 scale of customer loyalty, and made tiny revisions to the phrasing of the response info.
And there you have 20 years of changes to a comment card that took Howard & Roger about 2 ½ hours to come up with!
We currently print over 25,000 comment cards a year. We post them to the walls of our restaurants, publish the words and pictures on our web site and in our menu’zine, respond to a couple dozen each week who request a response, and pour through them weekly, looking for energy we ought to be chasing or celebrating or improving.
We send the crew out to the dining room to look at the new displays each month, for them to see what their work inspired.
Well, what else would you expect from a place that wants to become “Whirled Famous” for what they do?
*The two funniest entries we’ve seen in “The Bad Stuff” are:
• “If I was allergic to good taste, after eating your pizza… I’D BE DEAD!”
• “Your humility has been noted, but it is not necessary.”
If you draw a great comment card face, we might put it up on the wall, or feature it on our web site for a week, or use it in our upcoming menu’zine!