Tuesday, August 30, 2011

An Interview with the Noodle Man from the South

By Kenneth Lee Bozheng, Year 3, Engineering Informatics

The saying a smile makes all the difference certainly rings true for Mr Jackson Lu, the affable stall owner who operates his bustling noodle business at NYP’s South Canteen. Armed with an infectious smile and pleasant personality, Jackson is memorable and well-liked by many. Jackson’s popularity is reflected not just in the vast amount of customers who return to him, but also online, where a Facebook page called “Enthu Noodle Man From The South” has been specially created in recognition of his excellent service.
Justin Heng, a third year student from the Diploma in Engineering Informatics, is the creator of the page. He decided to start this page because he felt it was something new to do and no one has ever created a page like this in NYP before. When asked if he ever thought the page would make it this far, Justin comments that it took off much faster than expected, and it was a fun and learning experience for him in Social Media.
We interview Jackson, the Noodle Man himself to see what he has to say about his popular Facebook page:

Hi Jackson, you are rather well known in NYP! Please tell us more about yourself.
Hi Kenneth, I am Jackson Lu, currently 29 years old of age and I have operated this noodle business since 2008.
How is it that you came about setting up this noodle stall?
Actually I took over this stall from my mum. It used to be at the economic rice stall, but it has shifted a few stalls away.
Was this something you wanted to do?
I wasn’t thinking of doing this, but after helping out my mum, I discovered that my passion was to sell and cook.
Is F&B your interest? You seem very enthusiastic in your business. There is hardly a moment where you are not smiling.

While there are actually many factors to consider in an F&B business, from managing my staff to producing quality and delicious food. Ultimately, it gives me satisfaction to know that my customers are happy with my culinary skills and service, and they leave my stall with a smile J

What is your most popular dish?
I would say the prawn noodle soup, laksa and wanton mee.
Do you know you have a Facebook page with over 1,500 likes?

Yes, students have come up to me and told me before about my Facebook page :)

Did you know who created your fan page, and why was it created?
It was a student. One day, he came to ask me if he could take a photo of me for a project. So I said yes. Two days later, some students came to say I have a fan page!
What do you think of your fan page? Do you think the student portrayed you accurately?
I think it’s a good form of advertising. The portrayal is not far from correct! J
What does a normal day for you look like?
During normal school days, I wake up at 4 am and stop work at around 7 pm. During school vacations, it is better as I wake up at 5 am and can stop work at around 6.30 pm, depending on the crowd.
Has business increased since your fan page came up?
Yes, it helps! :) Students from other parts of the school came here because of my Facebook fan page.
Some of your supporters have suggested having a buddy meal or set meal.  What do you think of this idea?
I do have the intention of having new menu items and do not entirely rule out the possibility of the above, but this may take some time to formulate and implement. Of course, I do welcome additional feedback from all

What do you have to say about your fan stating on your fan page that you forgot to add an egg to her noodles?
I recognize the student from her Facebook profile picture, so the next time she comes back, I’ll compensate her J  If I’m not wrong, her Facebook name is Shopping Queen.
Would you be posting anything on your fan page?

My account name is “Jackson Lu” and every two days I do check the fan page wall. I do feel appreciated and grateful for the support from everybody
What are your future plans?

I do have various plans to expand my business, but again I will choose to do this slowly as it is not easy to expand. But I would not have been here without my customers and staff support, so thank you all!

What do you do on your days off?
Usually, I rest at home, or go out with friends. For Hari Raya, my plans are not confirmed yet.
Do you have anything to say to your supporters?
I APPRECIATE all your kind wishes, both on the Facebook wall and in real life. Hopefully, you will visit me more often. *laughs*
The Enthu Noodle Man From The South's Facebook fan page can be located at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Enthu-Noodle-Man-From-The-South/166054913465992?ref=ts


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