Recently I went to a diner for lunch, the traditional square napkin holder was on the table, dispensing single square napkins.
By the end of the meal l'd unintentionally used 4 napkins, and felt a little embarrassed.
The question: did l make far too much mess?
After the initial guilt trip, some semblance of logic kicked in: one hand I thought, who cares how many napkins l used they’re cheap!
On the other hand I thought isn’t there a financial cost and environmental impact on what had been consumed/used/ wasted.
Ok, the average person isn’t going to be concerned with my concerns, however on further reflection, who's really to blame for my over-consumption: me or the diner’s manager?
Yes l ordered a messy burger and the napkins provided were too small, made of wafer thin paper and not very thirsty.
The question: would l have used as less paper if the napkins were thicker and of a higher quality?
Bingo...the answer in one: management presumably wanted to save money buying in napkins. Napkins are a consumable, rarely thought of, yet part of a customer experience.
Management strives to reduce costs and will not consider consequences, as there’s only one result considered, save money!
By opting for the cheapest napkin, the diner’s got the job done , but at what extra cost in terms of purchase quantity, extra time and effort needed to clean and dispose of more mess.
On face value who'd argue with the righteousness of saving a buck yet in practical terms using 2, 3 or 4 times the necessary amount of paper will cost far more than having purchased a higher grade quality napkin in the first place.
The point: a failure to properly invest, ends up costing more when the cheapest option tends not to be the best at all, requiring more time, effort and usage to get the job done.
So isn't this a case of too little costing far too much.
What do you think!