Saturday, April 21, 2007

Good advice on handling government inspectors

OSHA, health department inspectors, government inspectors of any sort raise all sorts of problems for business owners. Assuming that the business owner has made a good faith effort to comply with the regulator's inspectors, I thought the following two paragraphs from the New York Times good advice for dealing with inspectors:

Restaurateurs and health department officials alike acknowledge that when an inspector calls, tensions run high. “It can be a deadly experience, and what you don’t want to do is let your emotions get away with you,” said Steve Millington, the general manager of Michael’s, the media-crowd hangout a few doors from Brasserie LCB.

“It’s like a cop giving you a speeding ticket,” he said. “You’ll be there until the cows come home. There’s almost a petulance to the inspectors. You really need to shut up and be servile to them.”

The Times headlined the story with Health Inspector Calls and Chef’s Pride Cracks. The article reads as a pretty good case study of what not to do when the inspector calls. Diplomacy has its place in this world.