I write 5 blogs; I know, where do I find the time. One of those blogs covers things that happen in the Syracuse and central New York area, called Syracuse Wiki.

On Christmas day I had a post go live talking about an experience my wife and I had at a local Ponderosa restaurant, the last one in the Syracuse area. Suffice it to say, the review wasn't a good one. There were a lot of problems my wife and I saw, and outside of the waitresses it was a bad time with a bad meal.

I pretty much figured that my article was written, the post went live, and that would be that. I don't like writing bad reviews but I am honest in what I experience. What I didn't expect was that the first response to the post that I would get would come from the vice president of operations for the national chain. His response asked if I would contact him so we could discuss things further.

I'd pretty much said most of what I wanted to say in the post but I had more that I could add. He gave me an email address so I wrote him and added some things that I didn't write in the article. I put down a phone number in case he wanted to call me and sent it off.

A couple of hours later I received a phone call from the district manager that oversees that particular Ponderosa restaurant and we had a nice conversation. She was dismayed by all the things I said except for my praise of the two waitresses that took care of our needs while we were there. Near the end of the phone call I said that I was impressed with the steps that upper management was taking in looking at my claims. I believe they saw that I wasn't a crank that was complaining because I had an axe to grind, and that was important to me. I don't gripe unless I offer criticism of a nature that someone can look at and fix for the next time; well, most of the time I don't.

Will my concerns be addressed? I actually think so, but what's more important is that someone from the company, at a high level, took the time to reach out to me and to make sure that someone else did as well. That shows dedication in my mind, and my wife and I will definitely partake of the free breakfast buffet coupons that are coming our way. We'll probably wait a few weeks before going, but I expect that at least most of my concerns will be taken care of by then.

Great customer service can save you from customers leaving your business forever, but it's only a first step. Positive changes need to occur when possible and necessary as well. At least they've done enough to get me to give them another chance; that's pretty good.