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PF Changs

November 15th, 2009 · 8 Comments

Ah, it’s happened again where time slips away from me and the blog. I’ve been so busy at work that I haven’t had time to really get out and about the Metrowest area much. I was going through some photos I took a couple of months ago and found this one I took of PF Changs.
Grab a cup of coffee and I’ll tell you a little story (if you want to hear one).
I worked at the PF Changs in Natick for two or three weeks when I was laid-off from my regular job and I knew it wouldn’t last from the first day of training. They had trainers come in from locations all around the country who lived, breathed and ate (no pun intended) PF Changs. It was like boot camp and these drill sergeants were the most obnoxious, condescending people I’ve ever met.
One of them, this blond girl who was very clearly used to being told she was cute, would strut into the room and yell “Hay HAY haaay!” and of course there were some people who would respond in like and became her fan base. She yelled everything. I asked her one time where something was (maybe I was looking for teabags or something I forget) and she yelled in my face “WHERE DO YOU THINK IT IS?!?!”. I just pivoted and walked away looking for someone who could actually help me get to know where stuff was. She must have realized that’s what I was doing because then she yelled “IN THE THIRD DRAWER FROM THE SOUP BIIIIIIIN!!!”.
She would also randomly test me with pop-quizzes like “WHAT ARE THE THREE MAIN INGREDIENTS IN CRISPY HONEY CHICKEN??”

Another trainer would like to hunt people down to degrade them. One night we were really busy and I guess I forgot to stab a bar ticket on the spike when I took my drinks. She came marching into the kitchen and screamed “WHO HAD A BAR TICKET FOR TWO MAI TAIS???” I just ignored her because I was busy getting a bunch of stuff ready to bring out and I just got double-sat and really didn’t have time to be degraded by her. Unfortunately, she looked further and found my name on the ticket and walked up to me and said “YOU NEED TO STAB YOU TICKETS!!” I just nodded and kept getting my tray together and she said “LOOK AT ME WHEN I’M TALKING TO YOU!” I looked at her only in disbelief that I was hearing this…person actually saying this to me and then she pushed the ticket to my forehead as if she were tacking it to a wall and yelled “ALWAYS STAB YOUR TICKETS!”. I looked at her, crushed the ticket in my hand, threw it on the floor and walked out of there before I took my tray of food and dumped it all over her. It was no use complaining to management because they witnessed all this stuff and just nodded their heads. I’ve been waiting tables since I was a teenager and never been treated like this, anywhere. Needless to say, I quit two days later.
A co-worker of mine stayed there another month and said it was just too crazy and also quit.
That’s my PF Chang Natick story. I will say the Mongolian Beef is great and also some coconut-pineapple shrimp thing was really good, although I’ll probably never go in there again to eat it. It’s probably not a bad experience to go as a customer but I don’t recommend it as a nice place to work.

Tags: *Natick · restaurants

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 BMR // Nov 16, 2009 at 8:14 am

    Never been there Michelle…and now surely never will. But you know, anywhere that treats employees that way cannot be trusted to treat their customers any differently. If they have such a lack of respect for those who are to serve their customers, how can that not be considered a lack of respect of their customers?

  • 2 Michelle // Nov 16, 2009 at 9:24 am

    Yeah that was the “interesting” thing. That they treated the customers pretty decently because they have money and want them to come back and spend more money.
    If you work there, and you don’t start your shift with tears of joy that you’re employed there they kind of “break” you down until you “repsect” them. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t start there rolling my eyes and saying “Ugh, I can’t belive I have to work here”, that would deserve some sort of “shape up or ship out” attitude. But as you probably know Brian, I’m just not (nor do I want to be) the kind of person who high-fives people after being able to recite what’s in Mongolian Beef. I’m just glad to be out of that “world”.

  • 3 Joker // Nov 16, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    Damn, now I don’t want to go there….. but I find their food delicous!


  • 4 Rev. Bob Baril // Nov 16, 2009 at 4:47 pm


    The first time I read this post I thought you ACTUALLY threw the food at that off the wall “boss” after you crumbled up the ticket. Depending on HOW you read it and where you put the emphasis it can sound like that!
    Upon re-reading it I realized you threw the ticket on the floor in lieu of throwing the food on her! Somebody recently gave me a PF CHANGS gift card. Now I sort of don’t want to go in there, either! I have eaten at PF CHANGS at Prudential Center once or twice. I’d prefer a “normal” locally owned Chinese restaurant any day. I remember that when I wanted hot tea with my meal I had a choice of a bunch of different kinds which all sounded weird. I got one that was spicy. I really just wanted what you get in every Chinese restaurant!

  • 5 Eric // Nov 17, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    You can judge a company by the way it treats their employees…in addition to despising them for being a corporate sell-out version of a Chinese restaurant, you have convinced me not to darken the doorstep given the way you were treated. I give you credit…I would not have lasted my first shift!

  • 6 Rev. Bob Baril // Nov 20, 2009 at 9:29 pm

    I used my PF Chang’s (yup there is an apostrophe in it) gift card for supper this evening with my son Jon.

    I had lemon chicken….quite good.

    Jon had NY steak strips….OUTSTANDING.

    I also got an order of pork fried rice which was good.

    I was glad for the gift card because it was a good $25 more than I’d have ever generally spend for a meal for 2 at a Chinese restaurant ($60 including tip…I had a $50 gift card).

    The service was pretty good. If our waitress had been a pretty blonde girl, I would have been temped to say, “Hay Hay Hay!!”

  • 7 Brett // Dec 8, 2009 at 6:30 pm

    They’re lucky:

    1. You didn’t press assault charges against the nutcase who pushed the ticket against your forehead.

    2. You didn’t file a complaint with the state for maintaining a hostile work environment.

    Several members of my family love the food there but I’ve never been, and now don’t want to go. I believe businesses that don’t treat employees well should be shown the error of their ways by avoiding them – let them feel it where it hurts the most – sales.

    I haven’t been in Wal-Mart in years and will not cross their doorway ever again if I can help it. But that’s another story!

  • 8 HOlla Back // Jan 26, 2010 at 6:05 am

    OMG I just had a bad experience training there this past week.
    Please read my blog that I just posted a few minutes ago.

    I would love to hear what you have to say. My problem was with lower management, not upper management…but it was repulsive.

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