I’m not sure if you’ve heard of the 26 Acts of Kindness trend, but I think this can definitely count as one! Colorado-based food chain Red Robbin has been making headlines for a beautiful act performed by one of its managers in Apex, North Carolina. I definitely wanted to share this positive story to balance out a recent negative story we posted about Chilly Ds, who used a receipt to insult a customer. The manager, Charles Vann (a 7-year Red Robin employee), took care of the cost of a pregnant woman’s dinner while she was dining with her family. Charles joked with the mom-to-be, Amie Sivon, about her Red Robin dinner possibly being her last before she gave birth. But when Sivon and her husband got the bill, Amie’s meal had been taken off their total, with nothing more said than a “MOM 2 BEE GOOD LUC” note on the receipt.

red robbin receiptAmie’s husband, Jason, said, “The manager said nothing to us about it.We were already happy with the service so that action really blew us away. I looked at my wife and told her that I guessed we would be coming here more often.”

The Sivons family was so pleased with the restaurant’s generosity that the newly-expanded family returned to say thanks. “We did go back to that Red Robin about a week ago and took our new daughter there,” Jason Sivon said. “The same manager was on duty, and we made it a point to say thank you to him and introduce him to our new daughter.”

Now the story has gone viral and several large news sites are covering it. Apparently acts of this nature are not that rare at Red Robbin. Kevin Caulfield, A Red Robbin spokesperson, said “These kinds of random acts of kindness in our restaurants are part of our culture. Our team members, day in and day out, will bestow these random acts. They’re empowered to do special things for our guests to make the experience a great one for our guests.”

Caulfield says the tradition goes as far back as the company’s founding in 1969 and is now just part of the chain’s culture. “It just evolved as part of the Red Robin culture and brand. Any new team member quickly sees that bestowing these acts of kindness is really ingrained in the culture. They see the idea manifest every day and so it becomes part of the way that they serve the guests every day.”

On Red Robbin’s website, there is even a section called “Unbridled Acts” on its website – devoted to emails, phone calls, letters and comments they receive from customers telling stories of their own personal encounters with Red Robin. Other acts of kindness include Red Robin employees who dug through trash to find a forgotten keycard, employees who pooled together $300 to replace money stolen from a left-behind wallet and employees who made a four-year-old girl’s waitress-for-the-day dreams come true.

This is an absolutely beautiful story and I hope this encourages corporations – and people – to perform more acts of kindness and to keep that positive energy going.