Restaurant 101

There are so many different forms of service to provide, but the basics of service doesn’t change.  As a server, you must provide a warm and professional environment.  Your section is your “home.”  It should be run and kept as such.  Not everyone is expected to be super efficient and superb at multi-tasking, but you would surprised what you can learn if you keep your mind open.  Service is seen through 3 different sets of eyes!   There are seen through:  1.   YOU!     2.  The Manager    3.  The Guest

Everyone expects you to do EVERYTHING at one time, while only making as little as $2.13 an hour.  So, making tips is your bread and butter.  You have very little room to screw up anything.  Everyone thinks that you have only 2 jobs:  Take my food order and deliver my food order.  We both know that it goes above and beyond that.  In fact, most corporate restaurants that get frequent secret shoppers to “shop” the restaurant, have as many as 36 points of service that the secret shoppers look for!!    It might sound like a lot, but it really isn’t.  Corporate restaurants just like to spell out everything for you, so they can have little drones run the restaurant.  But in the end, if you are just doing the natural aspects of your job, you do above and beyond 36 points of service…and you don’t even know it!  In the onslaught of blog posts I have coming, you will be able to learn to always stay in control without losing your cool…and you will never feel like you’re in the “Weeds.”

Your Manager is always scrutinizing you.  Every single move you make, but that’s what a manager is supposed to do.  In fact, they are supposed to be a SUPER Multi-tasker, and should be able to wait tables while running circles around you.  Managers, especially ones like me, will even carry you through service to make sure everything goes unhinged.  Especially for those days that you’re going in sick and are medicated (we’ve ALL done it)!  Your manager will definitely tell you all the right and wrong things you’re doing.  If they’re an effective manager, then they should be a constant teacher, parent and even therapist for you.  Managers have just as much pressure on them, as you do as a server.  They are expected to control service on the floor, at the host stand, be a part-time bar back, AND run a kitchen in expediting food out while trying to stay a step ahead of everyone else (including the guest).

The guest doesn’t care about if you’re having a good day or a bad day.  What the guest DOES care about is constant communication.  Stay a step ahead of them in this game.  They only see you as waiting on them, and not everything else that you have going on.  They care about being greeted in a timely manner, getting food and beverages in a timely manner, and getting their check in a timely manner while trying to have a good time with their guests (if they actually brought anyone with them).  From the moment the guest(s) enter the parking lot, they are evaluating every single last thing from the cleanliness of the parking lot (including proper outside lighting) to even how the host/hostess is dressed!  Think about it when you go out to eat.  What are the things you notice in a restaurant?  Well, those are the same exact things they are noticing.  From the cleanliness of the parking lot, to toilet paper in a bathroom. If you’re not having a good day for some reason (you’re sick, your child is sick, your car broke down, you got dumped last night, you decided to stay on a 24 drinking binge and have a hangover), the guest really doesn’t care.  They are there to “pay” for your services as their server.

These points are just a few insights that will be posted throughout my blog.  If you have anything to suggest/offer, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me, or write an article to be submitted!  I’m always looking for great things, even if it’s just humorous or indifferent experiences.  Thanks for reading and participating!