YOU are the most important part of any restaurant you work for. Remember, without YOU, people would be lost. They would not be able to order food, get suggestions, or be able to enjoy your company while they dine in your establishment. Believe it or not, YOU give just as much impression to a patron as the way the restaurant is designed, looks, feels, etc. YOU have the POWER to make it or break it for a customer so it is up to YOU to make their dining out experience a special one. Have you ever been out to eat and the server really made you feel unwelcome? Have you ever been out to eat and noticed that the server was really on top on things and actually “cared” about your table? Well, every person you wait on has had these experiences too and they are not looking to feel unwelcome.
With years of experience, I have become very aware of how my attitude shapes the way my customers perceive me. It doesn’t matter to them how you life is going or how your day was, it only matters how they are feeling and how their day is going. YOU are the lucky one who gets to either enjoy your customer’s great day or make their bad day better. Now, this isn’t an all in one solution to how customers should be treated or thought of, but for the most part these things are true. Some customers are really just in a bad mood and nothing, and I mean NOTHING will change that mood for the better. Sometimes YOU need to steer clear and just follow your steps of service. Don’t go out of your way to try and make somebody happy, it doesn’t work that way. It is your job to keep them satisfied and not overly concerned about why they are unhappy. However, people tend to use unhappiness as an excuse to complain when what is really bothering them has nothing to do with you at all, but it may be perceived that you are trying to make their lives miserable. The truth is, their lives were already miserable and they need someone to blame.
YOU are a special person. YOU are in a select group of people who get to wait tables to make a living, make extra money, or make friends in the restaurant industry. This isn’t a job for everybody because this isn’t a job that anyone can do successfully without the right personality and attitude. Some people take things more seriously than others and that is OK. YOU have the opportunity to talk to hundreds and maybe even thousands of people outside of your own social group each time you work, and for some reason you actually like it. Sometimes you get to get in on an interesting conversation, sometimes you just get that extra little tip that makes your day, but overall, something about YOU likes to be in the hustle and bustle of a busy restaurant and you like the interaction with you fellow human being. Although your interaction is mostly on the surface and isn’t personal, just a smile and a nod is all you need to connect with someone.
YOU have the right personality, and YOU are in the position to make someone’s day. To make sure you have a solid foundation of server fundamentals let’s go over the steps of service.