Working in customer service is a trying task. Even though the jobs are, for the most part, simple enough, it’s the customers that make or break your day.
If you’ve ever had one of these jobs, particularly in the food service industry, I commend you. You’ve probably become a more conscientious person because of it, fellow servers recognize you.
If on the other hand, you’ve never had a service job, it’s important to realize that the ways in which you approach, address, and interact with your servers will have a big effect on their state of mind and your own service.
Here are some tips to make sure you’re being the best customer possible.
No. 1 Get off your phone
Being on your phone while trying to place an order is extremely frustrating to servers. Multitasking, in this case, isn’t a good idea. If you’re ordering for other people, try to get the order from them before you get to the counter. Servers need your full attention, there are always questions they need to ask or details they need to let you know. Besides, it’s the polite thing to do.
No. 2 Read the menu
There’s nothing worse than someone who’s had time to look at the menu but still arrives at the counter with no idea of what they want. Or worse, when they order something the store doesn’t even carry. Servers need to work quickly and standing idly while you squint over the menu with a line of people waiting behind you is definitely not efficient.
No. 3 Understand that servers are human.
It sounds self-evident to state. But, servers are often disrespected or belittled after they’ve made a mistake. We understand it’s normal to be a bit annoyed when what you’ve paid for isn’t right but there is no need to project those feelings. Servers are stressed and overworked. Imagine what it’d be like to wait on a customer hand and foot. Trust me, it’s not easy. Learn how to forgive and forget.
No. 4. Leave a tip
Most workers in the food service industry, particularly servers and bartenders, make $5.08 an hour in Florida. Employers expect the remaining portion to be provided by the consumer. Though you may feel the injustice in that, if you are contributing to the use of that service then you are indebted to your server. This also applies to coffee shops, valet, salons and other places that provide a personalized service.
No. 5 If the establishment is closed, please leave the premises.
You may not want to go home yet but servers definitely do. Closing down a shop, restaurant or bar can take anywhere from one to three hours. By recognizing store closing hours and limiting yourself to them, you show an enormous amount of courtesy to workers. It shows that you respect their well-being as much as your fun time.
I’m sure we’ve all heard somebody say things along the lines of, “it’s their job” or “they get paid to do it.” This way of thinking, though true, does also rely on an abandonment of personal responsibility and social courtesy.
Anyone working in the service industry knows they are expected to keep a clean store and to go out of their way to provide the customer with an easy-going, worry-free experience. But as consumers and as human beings, it’s important to be considerate.