I got a great question today from a chef that I thought I would share with you:
I was in a store last week when a person shouted out, “Hi Chef” I faced the person and drew a complete blank. Not only did I not know this person’s name, I didn’t recognize them at all. So I smiled and said “Hi I’m fine” and kept on going.
I was disappointed with my reaction. Other choices were to stop and engage a conversation and fake it, hoping to pick up a clue to help me remember. Or to come right out and say, “I’m sorry I can’t remember your name” or say, “I know you but I don’t remember from where.”
What do I do in a situation like this???
A good response in a situation like this is to say something like, “Hi, good to see you.” Then, start a simple conversation. For example, if they are in a grocery store, (since this was a chef) ask them what they were planning for their big meal or whatever works in that situation. The key here is to say “good to see you.” Clearly, they know you, so you don’t want to say “nice to meet you” because they most likely have met you and will feel put off that you didn’t remember them. This allows you to start a dialog without being obvious that you don’t remember them.
OK, I’ll admit it. . . I’ve learned this the hard way – from experience!
What do you think about this approach or, what have you done in this situation?