We enjoyed a meal out Friday night which we like to do once in a while. I’m not a person who enjoys cooking. I cook so we can eat, but I really don’t enjoy it. Having said that, these are observations that I have made from dining out.
If you are a server pay attention and I think you will find your tips will increase.
1. Greet your customers as soon as you are physically able. Even if you’re waiting on another table, a quick hello and I’ll be right with you, will work wonders. Everyone likes to be acknowledged.
2. As soon as possible stop by their table and find what they would like to drink. Then bring them drinks and a menu. Don’t leave them waiting for their drinks.
3. Take their order and make sure you are listening, really listening when you write it down. Just last week I received a cheeseburger when I clearly ordered a hamburger. Thankfully, I’m not physically unable to have cheese and just ate it anyway, but I wasn’t happy with the mistake or that I had to have cheese on my burger. If they don’t ask for lemon in their water, don’t stick it in there. Conversely, if they do ask for lemon, make sure you get them a slice.
4. Check on their order and make sure it’s being processed, and then stop by with updates for them. There have been times when I’m sure our orders were left sitting until we asked and that’s when they finally got put in.
5. Bring the orders out as soon as possible so your customers get the best quality and hot food.
6. Check back with them after they’ve had a chance to try their meals and make sure there isn’t anything else they need. If I’m waiting on a condiment and haven’t been able to start eating because I’m waiting to get your attention, it’s not going to bode well for you.
7. Be friendly. Not sit down in your booth with you friendly (and yes, we’ve seen this happen) but don’t give off the air that you are doing them a favor just to wait on them. They are the reason you have a job. Convey your thankfulness by treating them as you would a friend.
8. Another check on them before they’re finished to make sure they’re still doing all right and to see if they want dessert, or a take-home box.
9. Bring them the check promptly and then remember to check back to see if they’re ready for you to cash them out. We’ve had to wait several minutes before and have had to flag down our waiter for it.
10. Offer them their change even if you think it would make a nice tip. Don’t assume it’s for you. Never assume it’s for you.