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ChangingMinds Blog! > Blog Archive > 09-Aug-15

 


Sunday 09-August-15

The cafe chair problem

Imagine you owned a small cafe or teashop, with a set of loose round tables and chairs. Now say you are tidying up after some customers have been there. Of course you take away the crockery and so on, clean the table and re-lay it for the next customers, but what do you with the chairs? Do you push them in, leave them out or what?

Leaving them as customers left them probably isn't a good idea as this just looks untidy. When things are not arranged in an ordered structure it forces more mental effort in recognizing what is there.

It may seem like a good idea to push the chairs right in. After all, it makes the place look tidy and allows customers to navigate more easily between tables. The problem with this, though, is that it has a 'closed' feel, as if the chairs are put away for the day. It also adds effort for customers in pulling out the chairs.

A more inviting arrangement is to create a 'looser' structure, with the chairs still in a regular pattern around the table, but now pulled out a bit, perhaps with just the front of the chair under the table.

A step further is to add a bit of seduction by rotating the chairs slightly. Like showing a bit of ankle (in this case the seat) it tempts you in.

It is this kind of thinking that can make a significant difference for little cost. This is not to say the rotated chair is the best for you, but it does seem like a good possibility. Which brings up the last and critical point, which is to constantly experiment. You can work out what should work, but you will only know if you try.


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