By Adrienne Dobson

If you asked ten different people on the street what they thought about mystery shopping, you would get ten very different views.  One common misperception is that mystery shoppers are only out to catch employees doing something wrong.  On the contrary!  The thing we love most is watching our partners and their employees succeed. We encourage our customers to acknowledge and reward their teams whenever possible.  The goal of our mystery shopping programs is to ensure that the proper training and standards set are being employed, and definitely not to set anyone up for failure.

Employees should look at a single mystery shop like a pop quiz.  You could be tested at any given moment by a mystery shopper, but you’ve already got all the answers to the test!  In theory, as long as the employees are following their training and performing the standards as they were taught, they will pass every single time.  ci_pop_quiz_1

As the mystery shopper giving the pop quiz, it’s important to remain unbiased.  Regardless of how good or bad the performance is, your job is to report the visit just as it happened.   Occasionally we hear from a shopper who had a bad visit, concerned that maybe they shouldn’t submit their report.  There is also the myth that if a shopper submits a low-scoring or negative report, that it will be rejected by the client.  Absolutely false!  If you observe something inappropriate, or in general just have a very negative visit on your mystery shop, that’s exactly what our client needs to know.  Obviously they are hoping for a different result, but if we don’t tell them what’s happening in their operation, how are they ever going to know?

One of our favorite phrases here at Customer Impact is, “What gets measured, gets done.”  Good or bad, it’s the job of a mystery shopper to observe and measure the service and standards of our clients.   You may feel bad having to submit a negative report here and there, but keep in mind that the goal is always to help these businesses get better.  Making them aware of these issues is the first step to getting them fixed!   Now if you’re interested in getting paid to tattle…. Er… I mean, MYSTERY SHOP… be sure to sign up with us today at  And just for reference, please see the photo below for a very established tattle tale, my little brother.




Featured Image by FreeDigitalPhotos