People can sometimes forget bad food, but they can’t stand bad service, and I am committed to making this place a place they want to come like old times.
Jon Milstead, the new general manager of Popeyes in Paris, knows the value of good customer service and good tasting chicken. But over the past year, many have expressed their dismay about the food and service at a store that Milstead says is a “mainstay of Paris.”
“When I first came on a week ago, I saw that Tracy Crawford and Tony Clark had commented online about how bad Popeyes in Paris had gotten,” said Milstead. “So, I invited Tracy and Tony to come to sit down and visit with me and air their concerns about what was wrong with Popeyes because the business had just sunk, and the comments were horrible.”
Milstead, who has been in the hospitality business for over 38-years and coincidentally opened Taco Casa right next door, was recently hired to “turn the store around,” and he plans on doing just that.
“Service and food were the main concerns all the way around. They’ve had two or three managers in here, but none of them lived in Paris, and I guess just over the past year, it’s steadily gone down.
“I started eating Popeyes over 25-years ago, and I loved it back then, and 25-years later, here I am. The employees weren’t taking the necessary steps to make it correctly. There is the wrong way, and then there is the Popeyes way. if I see somebody not treating a customer like they should be treated, they won’t be here.”
Over the past several months, Milstead has been training in preparation for taking over the store and said that while they have some good employees, they have some who, “if they don’t show a better attitude they won’t be here and will weed themselves out.”
“You have to care about something, and we’ve got to get our employees to where they can care about everything. Our customer’s experience at Popeyes can’t be bad. I won’t allow it. We will get it corrected somehow, someway.”
In the short time since Milstead took over, customers are already noticing a difference in customer service and the quality and taste of the food.
“I was here a month ago, and it tasted horrible. I wasn’t going to come back,” said one customer after Jon asked how their meal was. “But it tastes much better, and we will be back again.”
Milstead says business is increasing a little every day and that he wants to make it where customers can come in, sit down, and have a nice meal that tastes great with excellent service.
“We’re on our way,” Milstead said. “I can’t get it all done in two weeks, but we will get it back. It’ll just take a little time.”