By Tony Huppert, CEO of Team Oil Inc.
Recently, my sister went to see her eye doctor. She received the total exam, with the eye dilation, and other tests. While she was waiting to see the doctor, she decided to visit the restroom. On entering the unisex restroom she noticed the clinic had updated the locking mechanism for the door. It had a control box on the wall with buttons to push with different colors for locking and unlocking the door. With her eyes dilated and dark shades covering her eyes she proceeded to try to lock the door. It is hard to imagine the logic in installing a locking mechanism that requires instructions and a color-coded device to operate a door in an eye clinic of all places. Normally the reason one goes to the eye clinic is because of site problems.
A similar situation occurred when my nephew and I flew to Vegas last February on a fact finding mission. It was a low stress flight so we ate and had a couple pots of coffee before we boarded. Normally I sit towards the front of the plane, but I decided we would sit in the rear on this flight. With all that coffee we consumed, and a couple of beers, plus being old, I had to frequent the restroom in the back of the plane.
On exiting the restroom, each time I was met by a flight attendant. They were always so gracious, asking if I needed anything, and then proceeded on with their duties. It wasn’t until we landed that I realized that, instead of hitting the flush button, I was hitting the help button. That explains why the flight attendants were always there when I exited the restroom.
I can’t stress enough that proper signage provides a ‘Maximum Message.’ Getting locked in the clinic’s restroom or being met by the flight attendants can be avoided with the easy-to-read proper signage.
The same goes for signs in convenience stores. Signage in your convenience stores must to be easy to read and understand. My theory is “if a five-year-old doesn’t understand it, make a new sign.”