10 tips From a Waitress

For three years I have not been able to escape the food industry. At sixteen I was a bus girl, at seventeen I was a hostess, and ever since I’ve been a waitress. Waitressing may be one of the better jobs available to someone trying to work their way through college, but it definitely has its disadvantages.
  • First off, working with people is always a challenge. Many don’t believe in having a front stage and a back stage self; they just let it all hang out. Therefore, if a customer hasn’t been having the best day because she chipped a nail, the waitress better watch out. Displacement should be avoided because it is not the waitresses’ fault for anything negative that may have happened to the customer prior to entering the doors of the restaurant.
  • Second, if you are going to go out to eat, don’t be rude to the waitress. They are there to serve you and want your experience (and theirs) to be as pleasurable as possible. It is a slap in the face to know you are doing the best you can to keep the customers happy, but then they make you feel incapable. Going hand in hand with this concept, rather than shouting “Hey You!” to get your waitresses attention, “Excuse me” is always a nice alternative or even go so far as to using her name.
  • Third, many customers don’t understand the simple fact that just because their food isn’t the way they want it doesn’t mean it is the waitresses’ fault; it is more often than not the kitchen’s fault. So for all of you who are guilty of tipping less due to something regarding the food, you should reconsider the next time this happens.
  • Fourth, if you bring children out to eat at a restaurant, you should be sure you know how to control them. Having rowdy kids in a public place disturbs others not to mention what does that show others about your parenting skills. Furthermore, it is nice to dine out so you don’t have to cook or wash the dishes, but at least have the common courtesy to clean up after your offspring.
  • Fifth, normally a waitress has far more than one table at a time, so realize she can’t tend to you for 100% of her time. Rather than first asking for a refill of Diet Pepsi and then upon returning, asking for another bottle of Ketchup, do it all at one time.
  • Sixth, if a waitress does do a good job, be sure to tip 20%…times have changed; it isn’t 1950 anymore. Waitresses earn $2.63 an hour, so without decent tips one can easily make under minimum wage in a shift.
  • Seventh, if the only tip you have to offer your waitress are the coins from your piggy bank, I highly advise you to not go out to eat.
  • Eighth, to you men out there, don’t hit on your waitress. She is simply there because she needs to work to live (not live to work). She is not interested in picking up customers (and vice versa); that is what going out after work is for. Sure, be nice, but there is a fine line between being friendly and creepy.
  • Ninth, a tip to you ladies, watch the way your man treats your waitress because that can potentially be a huge inkling to the way he will end up treating you in your relationship.
  • Tenth, when it comes to your waitress or even your customer service representative the bottom line is play nice. After all, we are the ones handling your food.
Author: Tori Sousa
Photography by: Benjamin Rudström

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