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Discover the right steadiness: cultural integrity and buyer expectations

Maintaining cultural integrity while meeting customer expectations is not easy – it takes work and dedication. Learn how to find balance during this week's episode.

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6, 2021

4 min read

The opinions expressed by the entrepreneur's contributors are their own.

Review host Emily Washcovick and Yelp's small business expert shares a look at this week's podcast episode.

Customer expectations can be tricky, and as a business owner, they aren't always what you think they should be. Lucas Sin, owner of Nice Day Chinese in New York City, has expertly mastered the challenges of meeting customer expectations and has refused to compromise the integrity of his business and offerings.

To bring Nice Day Chinese to life, Lucas and his founding partners had to face two competing truths: first, the understanding of Chinese food in the US is "largely unique and limited," as Lucas put it, and second, the importance of Chinese – American cuisine is related to American food in general. In Lucas' words: "People have a very nostalgic and intimate relationship with Chinese-American food." To celebrate tradition while meeting demand, Lucas and his team decided to open a restaurant that would offer customers the Sino-American food they crave while paying homage to the more traditional ingredients and recipes that always Harder to Find The generation of chefs is starting to age.

Morlene C., this week's Yelp reviewer (and Yelp's Brooklyn Community Manager), admitted the initial skepticism she felt about Nice Day. As part of the Chinese, she did not grow up on Chinese-American food, and notes that it can be difficult to find Chinese-American cuisine that is made with integrity and respect for Chinese culture. But she soon found out that the Nice Day Chinese strike that balance perfectly. And it's not easy – maintaining cultural integrity while meeting customer expectations requires patience and commitment. Regardless of what industry you are in, it is important to always remember what you are working towards. Whenever you make a decision, make sure that all the boxes are checked – both something that doesn't compromise your cultural integrity and an experience or product that you are proud to deliver to your customers.

We talk a lot about the importance of a great customer experience, and when it comes to dining, it can be easier to focus on the end product than the experience itself. Lucas takes it further and describes that it's really about what the product itself enables: “I've always been so curious about the ability of food to tell stories that food is a starting point for thinking about deeper cultural issues and social problems and having it as a kind of gateway to a bigger conversation. "

Think about what your offerings can do for society as a whole. Not every service and product can lead to major social conversations, but in general, think about the real impact your business can have.

Here's a quick look at some of the lessons learned from this week's episode:

Consistency. When trying to get loyal customers, one of the most important things to focus on is creating a consistent experience and / or product. For restaurants in particular during the pandemic, this also means thinking about your take-away experience. How can you make sure your product works well? How easy is the ordering process? It's these little things that help you succeed.Identify a mission and stay true to it. One way to ensure that you never compromise your values ​​is to create a mission for your company and ensure that all the decisions and decisions you make are representative of that mission.Sometimes the food just has to be delicious. While it is important for a business owner to focus on a mission, sometimes for the customer it is all about the end product. Lucas shared, “I really appreciate that for many, many people, food is just food and has to be delicious, hot and crispy. I think part of the amazing thing about American-Chinese food is that you can enjoy it in and of itself for your own purpose without further thinking about history and all of those things while you are eating it. “While leadership is essential, it is also important to understand the reality of your customers' expectations.

Listen to the following episode to hear directly from Lucas and Morlene, and subscribe to Behind the Review for more from new business owners and reviewers every Thursday.

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