Aspects of life

A Gateway to Break Free from the Powerful Practice of Reviews!

A Gateway to Break Free from the Powerful Practice of Reviews!

A story of your experience is what is true for you in the moment, it can be “made to stick” and reveal a unique quality of how you serve.

This blog article takes you into the world of reviews, a world that seems to control us and define our experiences.

Do you care about the reviews people write about you or your services?

Do you write reviews?

Here is how we will explore and meet this world of reviews:

  • A review of my recent experience in a restaurant
  • What makes an experience stick?
  • Is what I need also what you need?


A review of my recent experience in a restaurant

My experience in Bistro Heritage made me smile. This is my story or if you wish, my review.

I enjoyed the food and the wine and yet that is not really what made me experience joy. What made me leave the bistro with a smile on my face was the effect the gracious attitude of the maître had on me.

In a short period of time I noticed him spontaneously filleting a sole for one of his young customers. A little while later he passed my table and saw my puzzled look regarding the piece of rib in front of me. He gently proposed to cut it in smaller pieces for me. It was a generous offer, he did not parent me. I felt grateful and cared for. Later in the evening I witnessed how he offered another couple a glas of rosé out of a magnum bottle. He saw their own bottle was empty and their meal not yet finished.

This review shares the story of my experience. It is personal, it is unique to who and what I am. It is related to what sticks for me!


What makes an experience stick

There is a lot of information available on what sticks and what doesn’t stick. The Heath brothers take you on a special journey in their book “Made to Stick”  They list a series of factors that are important if you want your organisation, product or restaurant to stick:


Lets have look and match these factors with my story above.

  • It is simple, this maître sees an opening and he acts upon it.
  • It is unexpected, he got my attention.
  • It is concrete, I understood and I remembered it afterwards.
  • It is credible. I believe that this way of being is what will create a more beautiful world.
  • It is emotional, because it is about care and love for others.
  • It is a story that can be spread into the world.

This is remarkable! What if what makes us smile, sticks with us because it follows all these principles the Heath brothers mention!

What is also remarkable that many reviews are limited to one or two of these aspects.

Many relate to the emotional aspect. The mâitre was unfriendly. The personal was adorable. Or they offer concrete comments. The food was horrible. The wine was delicious.

There is already an important invitation here. What if we wrote: I perceived the mâitre as unfriendly. I felt cared for by the personal. I didn’t like the food. I loved the wine. Then we share our stories in such a way that shows that we are responsible for our own experience and for what sticks with us.

Another observation here is that reviews are not only about what makes us smile. Reviews might be more related to what we need and want. Here comes another perspective to explore!


Is what I need also what you need?

I found an article through TripAdvisor referencing five major qualities a maître of a restaurant should have in order to succeed. One of these qualities is on understanding customer needs. Which is more specific identifying the true needs of each client.

There might be a pitfall here. A maître could easily take his needs for yours and impose those on you. What he needs or beliefs or thinks is not always what you need, believe or think!

Let’s return to the story. How does this maître of the Bistro Heritage handle his customers needs? He does not assume he knows the needs of his customers, he waits until those needs are obvious. His intuition then seems to inform him about the right action. He gets out of the way.

What we learn here is that customers needs are related to your success. We add one more factor to the list of the brothers Heath. This factor is “service” and this makes the acronym SUCCESS complete!

Let us return to the topic of this article! How does this relate to reviews? What you need and want and share in a review is unique for you and might not be what I want and need.


Wrapping up

We offer more perspectives into this fascinating world of reviews, a world that affects us and guides our choices.

Reviews are always personal stories. This is part of the policies of TripAdvisor, the kingdom of reviews (…. I certify that this review is based on my own experience and is my genuine opinion…). This leads us into an important question. How reliable are reviews?

We are responsible in how we share our stories and vice versa how we read and interpret the stories of others.

Reviews are often how you attract and keep customers loyalty for your business. Maybe they are only one aspect of our success: the story!

In order to make your business stick you have a unique choice:

“Be you, be the truth of who and what you are and how you serve.”

Some people will like it and others won’t like it. You will get all kind of reviews. They are always right from the perspective of the person who wrote them and they might not be wright for you, they might even not be useful.

And what about writing reviews? You can spark joy in others if you share your personal experience aligned with the truth of who and what you are and how you serve.

If you are interested in more material that sparks joy, you can learn more about Guest House Facilitation and the ChancesToChange board game.

Did you enjoy this post? If so, please share on your favorite social media (buttons below). It’s a HUGE help for me and I am always really grateful.

Warm regards, Veerle

Bio Veerle De Bock: Each day I add a bit more colour to the world, I colour within and outside of the lines as I take up different roles. My different roles are social entrepreneur, physician, coach, teacher, therapist and most of all facilitator of emerging possibilities. Link to bio.