Quick Coffee Queue

Posted by Eric Bastholm on October 13, 2009
Oct 132009

Improvement can be found anywhere, as shown by the guy that runs the coffee shop close to my office. At times it can get quite busy, especially in the mornings when everyone is getting that first hit for the day. The lines can get long and good coffee take a little time to make. However, a simple idea has halved my waiting time.

A while ago I noticed that on the mini whiteboard, where usually is the day’s muffin flavors (and perhaps some gentle ribbing about the Springboks beating the Wallabies in the rugby), a message:

In a hurry! SMS to <phonenumber> to leave your order and it will be ready when you get here.

What a brilliant idea. It just so happens that the time it takes to walk from the couple of car parks in the area to the coffee shop is about the time it takes to make a cup of coffee. What has happened here is that he is pinching that time to make your coffee while at the same time you walk.

It’s a sort of multi-tasking. I have to wait while I walk to the coffee shop. It’s the price you pay for being trapped in a body. And I have to wait for my coffee when I get there. Overlapping these periods means that since I have been texting my order in I hardly ever have to wait.

In effect, his timeline has just moved into the past a few minutes relative to mine. He has no extra work, works no faster, but I get my coffee quicker. Everyone is happy. And best of all, he has less time to tell me how the Rugby went.

Thanks to Andreas and Jenna for the topic of this post.

...cup of coffee shared ....photo © 2010 Kannan B | more info(via: Wylio)

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