Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Andersen Consulting optimizes the restaurant business

Last week I took some friends out to a restaurant, and noticed that the waiter who took our order carried a spoon in his shirt pocket. It seemed a little strange, but I ignored it. However, when the busboy brought our water and utensils, I noticed he also had a spoon in his shirt pocket. I then looked around the room and saw that all the waiter persons had a spoon in their pocket. When the waiter came back to check on our order I asked, "Why the spoon?"

"Well," he said, "the restaurant's owners hired Andersen Consulting Experts in efficiency in order to revamp all of our processes. After several months of statistical analysis, they concluded that customers drop their spoons 73,84% more than any other utensil. This represents a drop approximately 3 spoons per table per hour. If our personnel is prepared to deal with that contingency, we can reduce the number of trips back to the kitchen and save 1,5 man hours per shift." As we finished talking, a metallic sound was heard from behind me. Quickly, the waiter replaced the dropped spoon with the one in his pocket and said: "I'll get another spoon next time I go to the kitchen instead of making an extra trip to get it right now."

I was rather impressed; the waiter continued taking our order and while my guests ordered I continued to look around. I then noticed that there was a very thin  string hanging out of the waiter's fly. Looking around,  I noticed  that all the waiters had the same string hanging from their flys. My curiosity got the better of me and before  he walked off I asked the waiter, "Excuse me, but can you tell me why you have that string right there?".

"Oh, certainly!" He answered, lowering his voice. Not everyone is as observant as you. That consulting firm I mentioned also found out that we can save time in the restroom'.

"How so?"

"See" he continued, "by tying this string to the tip of ... you know ... we can pull it out over the urinal without touching it  and that way eliminate the need to wash the hands, shortening the time spent in the restroom by .39%."

"OK, that makes sense, but ... if the string helps you get it out, how do you put it back in?"

"Well, he whispered, lowering his voice even further, "I don't know about the others, but I use the spoon."


  1. Is this post in the same category of "holes in the floor"? :-)

  2. Why not? It is about Andersen Consulting :-)

    The real reasons:

    * Crap And Crapability is my "black hole" for dumping anything that doesn't fit in my other blogs.

    * I have been very busy at work these days so I have little or no energy for writing something serious.

    * I'm cleaning up my inbox and I am discovering tons of fun stuff I want to share