After working in the food service industry for over five years now, there are several things that just really irk me. Every night I come home with a plethora of stories of incredible things people said to me throughout the day. So here are five things I would like to remind people of.
1. Just because I'm wearing the name tag, doesn't give you the right to be rude to me.
I'm still a person even though I'm in a uniform. If you need something, ask. There's no need for hand waving, shouting and clapping your hands at me. The number of times I have been left absolutely speechless because of the way a customer has spoken to me is far too many – and I'm not often left at a loss for words.
2. Please, tip.
Seriously. Servers make under $3 and hour, and when you stiff on a tip you are really taking a bite out of their income. Also, in many restaurants, the wait staff tips out numerous people including the bartender, food runner and the busser based on their sales. Ideally, servers should end their night with at least 20% of their sales in tips, but multiple tables leave less than 20% or nothing at all, and after tipping out the three aforementioned parties, servers walk out with barely any money.
3. You're not the only one in the restaurant.
Unless, maybe, you're eating in the middle of the afternoon on a gorgeous day. The next time you're out to eat, look around the dining room. Chances are your server is running around like a madman, refilling drinks, greeting tables, picking up dirty dishes and everything in between. Maybe they're juggling two large party tables, or just got triple sat. Bottom line, your server is waiting on more tables than just you. So don't criticize your server for not giving you his or her undivided attention, because trust me, they're trying their best.
4. Servers have no control over the way your food is cooked.
I know this may seem like common sense to many, but there are still plenty of people who scream and yell at their server when their food comes out over or under cooked. Yes, we are the ones who click the button for some pink or well done, but we're not standing over the grill cooking your cut of meat.
5. Help me, help you.
Please stop staring at your phone for ten seconds and give me just a little human interaction when I come to your table. If you don't like something tell me. If you need another drink, let me know and I'll grab you one. Please don't just tell me everything is fine and then leave a passive aggressive note on your receipt telling me you hated x, y and z and then leave a whopping zero dollar tip.