Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Restaurant Service in a Nutshell

restaurantWhat is considered good service in a restaurant? I tell my students that they need to offer good service if they work in a restaurant but I’m not sure I defined what that means. Maybe good service to me might not mean the same for everyone else. I can tell you though that the better the service, the better the tip that I leave is much higher.
My husband and I go out to eat a lot. Probably more than the average person so I think I have seen all types of service. Sometimes there are many things that affect how much I enjoy my visit to a certain restaurant and I think all of these things affect my tip (even though it probably should not).
If you are a host/hostess:
1. I should be acknowledged when I walk in. If they can’t seat me right away, at least let me know that you see me and will seat me shortly.
2. Ask my preference as to a table or a booth.
3. Don’t seat me at a place if there is trash under or around that table.
4. If there are plenty of tables, don’t seat me right next to another occupied table. This may be convenient for the server but not enjoyable for the guest.
If you are a server:
1. Acknowledge that you see me even if you can’t get to me right away.
2. Introduce yourself and act welcoming like you are glad I am there. I don’t like when you make me feel unwelcome or that you are doing me a favor by waiting on me. Without me, you don’t have a job so essentially I’m doing you a favor by being there.
3. Don’t take too long to get my drink order so I can look at the menu while you get my drink. Usually I come in and I’m thirsty.
4. Always make sure that my drink is not empty. Don’t ask me if I need a refill. Just bring me one! If my glass is empty, I need a refill.
5. When you bring my food, check and make sure that everything looks right. Ask me if I need anything else. Don’t just ask these questions and then turn before I can answer. Wait for me to answer.
6. Keep your eye on me every once in awhile to see if I need anything. Don’t ask me every 2 minutes if I need anything because then you are interrupting our conversation which is annoying.
7. Ask me if I’m done before you take away my plates. I do not want you to touch my plates if I am still eating or using the plate.
8. Some people eat faster than others. Don’t bring the check until all of the people are done eating unless someone asks for it. Bringing the check before people are done makes them feel rushed. Rushed people do not leave good tips.
9. Let me know if you take the payment or if I have to go somewhere to pay. I hate having to guess what to do. If I have a question about my bill, offer to check it even if you think I’m wrong. Then go check it because I may be right.
10. Thank me for being there. Invite me to return again (remember, I’m job security! The more customers, the more the business needs to keep you.)
These are my suggestions for good service. Do you have any others to suggest? Please share.
Image: 'untitled'

1 comment:

Sioux said...

Because I was a waitress for a number of years, I have an additional item. When given money for the bill, don't ask, "Do you need change?" Assume you will be bringing change, and say, "I'll be right back with your change," and then if it's all for the server, the diner can indicate that.