Over the weekend, my mate, Sean (who I often talk about and is one of the biggest supporters of be nice.) were out for a ride on our pushbikes.
He had mentioned this place in Coburg next to the old jail called ‘The Boot Factory’ a few times and we ended up fairly close.
It was a Friday night, and around 6pm, so usually cafe’s are closed, but there were tables and chairs out the front….so we rode up. Turns out they’ve just started trading on Friday and Saturday Nights…beauty.
I had $15 in my back pocket so enough for a couple of coffees or a juice (I’ve actually been enjoying a juice lately after not touching them for years due to sugar). So we went in and told the staff we were gonna grab a couple of coffees and sit outside.
That day we had also seen a few ‘be nice.’ stickers around the bike path stuck on signs and various walls….NO idea how they got there or who put them there….;)
But I had a half dozen more with me. But you don’t need to know that just yet.
Anyway, we were met by a young-ish guy, I guessed around 22-23ish. As I do, I started the conversation and asked his name, to which he replied, Enzo. What an awesome name I thought. Plus he was very friendly and personable.
Sean asked if Enzo would like to put a be nice. sticker up in the cafe?
He replied that he might not be able to put one up, but would love to take one personally.
We explained what be nice. was all about and he mentioned that it sounded really cool.
We ended up giving him 3 stickers for his positivity, to which he then told us he was going to be 3 times as nice.
After Enzo came back with my Emma and Tom’s Mango juice and Sean’s coffee, we asked him what he did other than work at the cafe?
He replied how he was studying psychology. Which was very cool, as I have quite the library of books on how the mind works and why people exhibit certain behaviors.
This of course turned into a 15 minute discussion on which authors he likes, why working in the cafe is perfect for seeing different behaviors, customer dynamics, interactions and general psychology discussions. It was such a cool chat.
Then, what I also thought was cool is how Enzo explained he was also a ‘self proclaimed nerd’, and really enjoyed Magic the Gathering. I didn’t know much about the game, but Enzo’s passion while explaining was contagious. It makes me want to give it a go!
He then continued on to explain how he has been contemplating heading down to Princes Park in Melbourne’s North to participate in the Live Action Role Play that some people like to do. (think of the movie ‘Role Models’ with the actor that played McLovin), but hasn’t had time just yet.
I explained he was a super cool dude, that I actually have a blog on ‘be nice.’ which is why I do all of this and how I like to share unique stories. I asked if he would be cool with being one of the stories and if I can shoot a picture? He said for sure, but he had to do the rounds first and he would be back in around 15 minutes.
Sean and I kept talking before I went inside to pay and use the bathroom. Upon getting to the counter I was greeted by a girl, who immediately explained she had heard all about these guys outside being extra nice….I said, yes we are….would you like a sticker? She said, definitely and loved this whole be nice. thing.
I always find it quite easy to build rapport if you skip all the boring ‘how are you? how was everything?’ questions and just jump straight into a conversation.
She introduced herself formally with a nice firm handshake and stated her name was Alex. It’s so refreshing when a female has a nice handshake, or even offers to shake your hand for that matter! Great manners.
Alex and I then chatted for 10 minutes about be nice. plus me being me, had to show her my facebook page, and explain a little bit more of course!
She explained she is working full time there and managing the cafe. What a great person to have on the front line….very friendly, personable while staying professional.
On top of this, Alex might not know this, but I actually sent her mum a message on Facebook and explained what a great manager her daughter is.
The reasoning behind this is every parent wants to hear nice things about their children. It’s human nature. I believe in giving credit where credit is due and it makes them feel great about the work they put in to raise their child. Just a little thing I learned from one of the leaders I follow, but it goes a LONG way.
What a great story from a cafe that 24 hours ago, I didn’t even know existed.
But the best thing of all, is that this occurred because we took the time to say hello, make conversation, give off some energy and in return, look where it lead to.
I’d say I can’t wait to go back a second time, but we actually went there the very next day for lunch haha. So it’s probably more accurate to say I can’t wait to go back a third time.
Thanks for reading.
p.s something crazy/funny happened on the way home from this cafe too, but that story will have to wait until another day. stay tuned.