In The News

Oops, Olive Garden

One year ago…

According to Huffington Post, Olive Garden served alcohol to a 10-year-old boy in Indianapolis last week. No one at the table placed an order for an alcoholic drink. Instead, the mother placed an order for a non-alcoholic fruit smoothie called Wildberry Frullato. The boy drank half of the drink, and later, he was taken to the hospital. The hospital found alcohol is his system which was due to the waitress serving a rum drink instead of the ordered non-alcoholic smoothie.

Recently, there have been other cases at Applebee’s, Outback Steakhouse, and Chili’s. This is a major PR Crisis for Olive Garden. How should they handle it? Past cases at other restaurants resulted in retraining employees and terminating those responsible for the mix up.

According to PR Daily, Olive Garden responded with: “We find this situation completely unacceptable and we are extremely upset that this occurred. We have a zero tolerance policy for any violation of our responsible alcohol service policy, and the employee who served the wrong drink has been terminated. We are thankful that the child is OK and we will continue to work with the family to resolve this issue.”

Is this enough? Firing the employee is an action, but shouldn’t there be an act to convince their customers that they are taking action in order to prevent the situation from occurring again. Especially since, Olive Garden had the situation happen  a year ago.

Olive Garden can change some training and serving techniques and release it to the public. Also, they can help prevent this from happening by completely separating the regular drink and alcoholic drink production process.

Do you have any ideas of how Olive Garden can handle the crisis?


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