Take Your Restaurant Serving Skills To The Next Level
What are the core elements of good server service?
While waiting tables may not be rocket science, it can be an incredibly challenging job that significantly benefits from mastering specific skills. By following these steps, you can take your restaurant serving skills to the next level and provide customers with a memorable dining experience.
1. Greeting customers in a friendly, professional manner
Greeting guests with a simple smile is a great first step in creating a memorable guest experience. Then, genuinely engage in simple conversation to show interest in them as individuals. This can create a sense of trust and goodwill that can help foster a relaxed atmosphere for the entire meal.
2. Understanding customer needs and preferences
A good service requires understanding customers' needs and preferences. This starts with reading your table and being aware of guests' body language to understand better their desired dining experience. Then, tailor your service to match their needs.
For example, if four well-dressed business professionals engage in deep conversation when you approach the table, they likely would prefer a less engaging and intrusive experience. Of course, if that changes and they engage with you or their gesture accordingly, adjust your approach to the table. Remember, this is about the guest's experience and satisfying their unique needs.
3. Waiters and waitresses must know the menu
While restaurant menus can be complicated and detailed, knowing the menu inside and out is essential to providing excellent service. Remember, from the guest's perspective, a waiter or waitress is the restaurant. Because of this, It's important to answer questions about ingredients, preparation, and nutritional information accurately and confidently.
Understanding the different menu items, ingredients, and preparation methods requires research and comprehension of the type of cuisines served at a particular restaurant.
4. Making recommendations and upselling
One way to increase sales and enhance customer satisfaction is to make informed recommendations and, when appropriate, upsell additional items to enhance the meal.
This only means suggesting the most expensive menu items if they genuinely deserve it. While this may increase the check, it will be marginal, and the guest may take any displeasure out on your gratuity or not return to the restaurant.
However, if you recommend exceptional menu items of incredible value or that are unique, the guest will appreciate their dining experience and that you have their best interests in mind.
5. Servers Wallet to take orders accurately and efficiently
Ensuring orders are taken promptly and correctly is crucial, as making mistakes with orders can lead to costly errors and headaches. Listening carefully and repeating the order to the customer to ensure its accuracy.
The best way to take a guest's order is to write it down. Writing an order allows servers to engage with guests throughout the ordering process.
Even if you have an exceptional memory, memorizing orders is not a good practice. Guests will often second-guess your ability to get it right. So, whether you make a mistake or not, their experience is adversely impacted.
Imputing an order on handheld POS devices is also not recommended as this process is more demanding of a server's focus, often ignoring the guest. If your restaurant implements these devices, try to be as engaging as possible before and after entering orders into the device.
Professional server books are to a waitstaff as a knife is to a chef. A server book is the waitstaff's office, desk, and file cabinet. A well-designed server organizer book provides a money pocket to hold cash and receipts securely and hidden from guests.
It also provides a firm, professional-looking writing surface, while an accompanying formatted order pad reduces scribbling and ensures accurate, efficient order-taking.
Before Waiter Wallet invented the restaurant server book, the waitstaff was forced to use whatever they could find, usually, a check presenter not designed to organize servers.
In addition to neatly securing and organizing everything servers are challenged to carry, only Waiter Wallet puts essential food and beverage information at a waitstaff's fingertips to empower even the best server to know and sell more.
online cheat-sheet software that makes creating valuable custom content for every restaurant menu easy. But, whatever the brand, every professional waiter, waitress, and bartender should invest in a high-quality, durable restaurant server book!
6. Delivering food promptly
Delivering food promptly is essential to keeping customers happy and ensuring repeat business. While there are many tasks, servers should prioritize entering orders into the POS system as soon as possible. This way, the order will be fresh in their mind and more accurately entered. Nothing is worse than seeing a table without food and realizing you forgot to place the guest's order.
After the guest's first bite or two, a quick check of their table ensures they have everything they need and are happy with their meal. Providing this bit of hostility too late or too early negates your ability to address any issues promptly and successfully.
7. Develop essential problem-solving skills
Servers face constant customer requests that must be efficiently prioritized. It's important to quickly assess these requests and their urgency before taking action. By actively observing your station, listening to your customers, and asking questions to understand their concerns, you will be better able to address any issues.
Waitstaff should also be proactive, anticipating customer needs and offering solutions to address them before they are asked to ensure guests have a positive experience at your restaurant.
All in all, effective problem-solving techniques are essential for servers in the restaurant industry.
Waiting tables is a hard job. Anyone who has waited tables would say everyone should have to do it at least one time. But, despite its challenges, it can be a fun, flexible, and rewarding way to earn a living.
By developing these skills, you can help ensure every customer has an experience that meets and exceeds their expectations.
Aim to exceed expectations by going above and beyond with your services. Going out of your way to show care and provide hospitality will make customers feel valued, leading to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty.