Smiling or grinning?

Keihin Electric Railway in Japan has introduced a "Smile Scan" system at 14 of its railway stations. The machine takes a picture of their employee's smiles and analyzes it for lip movements, lip curves, wrinkles, and so on, rating it on a 0 to 100 scale. The machine also gives feedbacks, such as "Your smile is getting better" or "Smile like you're happy!"

The system is designed to improve staff's customer response by giving them a more natural smile.

Read the full article here.

I have friends who visited Japan this summer, and they told me the most incredible things about this country. What they found especially remarkable was the politeness and friendliness of employees in public places, such as sales assistants or railway employees. It is, for example, standard for them to greet and take a bow when a entering or leaving a train.

And all this respectful behavior doesn't do? The smiles are not natural enough?

My students who train for sales assistants will laugh about this, when I tell them. Very heartily and naturally. No smiles to the customers if they don't feel like it. Natural smiles very seldom. One of them told me once: I wouldn't insult a customer by smiling artificially.

That's the other extreme.

No chance of implementing those scans in Austria, I'm sure.


YogaforCynics said...

I'd say that one way to prevent natural smiles would be to require them...

francessa said...

Very well put! :-)

Lydia said...

Boy, that would have been the antithesis of anything I could have abided at work!

Much of that culture seems stilted to me. But I'd still like to go to this Zen monastery that a friend of mine has visited twice. She's found something real there.


francessa said...

Now that's sounds interesting, Lydia. Maybe you can tell us about Zen?

Related Posts with Thumbnails