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what is the worst thing a server can do to make you mad? - Page 14

post #391 of 483

What exactly creates a correlation between introducing yourself and being a mediocre server?  I'm sorry, I just don't think that's correct.  I do find it interesting, however, that all of the people that are against any sort of familiarity on the part of a server seem to be working on the other side of the window.  Makes me wonder if perhaps some of these chefs simply don't have customer service skills :)

post #392 of 483

I'm not a chef - nor do I work in a kitchen in any capacity.

 

I think you should agree to disagree:  ie - you think as a sever that it's your 'right' to introduce yourself to me.    My view:  Why?  I am usually eating a meal with friends and that is where my interests lie - not in the total stranger who is being paid to bring my food or bring the wine.  If I WANT a recommendation say, for instance, about a wine, then I'll ask the sommelier!

 

Oh and by the way?  The comment where you say that ALL shop workers have their names on their shirts?  Nope, not in the UK and not in many areas of Europe where I visit and shop.  Neither does my husband, who is a member of one of the professions you also say have name badges.

You seem to have a real chip on your shoulder...

post #393 of 483

I have a chip on my shoulder because I'm stating the way things are in the country in which I live?  As we've already covered I don't live in the UK. 

 

It's not that I think it's the server's "right" as much as their "responsibility" to at least make sure you're informed of WHO is going to be taking care of the table during the course of their stay.  It's a simple matter of common courtesy to at least know someone's name if you're going to be dealing with that person for a significant period of time.

 

As far as ALL shop workers, etc., that was an obvious exaggeration on my part, as well as the fact that I said ALL of those opposed are on the other side of the window.  I'm merely making an observation based on this thread in generalizations as far as opinionated statements.

 

I find it remarkable that people are so adamant to defend their position of non-personable and antisocial tendencies while in a public setting, but to each their own, I suppose.  Like I stated previously, if you want a server that simply goes through the motions with you, that's your prerogative.  I simply find it rude and a little insulting that you're apparently confusing "server" with "servant".  They're there to serve you,  but they're another person just like you, and every bit as important as you are. 

 

As far as the server being paid for the service, the only real payment servers in this country make is tips.  Besides that I believe the minimum nowadays here is 4.35 per hour.  So, you know, god forbid someone shows a little personality in an effort to make a little more income when dealing with other people.

post #394 of 483

In either case I think I've clearly stated my two cents, so I'll leave you all to your own opinions.  I just wish you'd reconsider looking down on telling someone your name of all things.  I mean, really?  There are far more important things in the world to get worked up over.  But, not for everyone, I guess.

post #395 of 483

Perhaps the thread title should be something along the lines of "Tips, how to avoid losing them" or "Impact of server's actions on tips".

 

Off the top of my head, servers risk substantial tip reduction by:

  • Not being attentive to the customer's needs or wants, or
  • Not respecting the fact that the customer is in charge, not the server, or
  • Volunteering information not specifically requested by the customer, or
  • Allowing anything to distract from serving the customer, or
  • the obvious, poor food safety, personal hygiene, brusk or condescending attitude. 

 

Servers enhance tips by:

  • Prompt, efficient service without relying on customer prompts, and
  • Quick and accurate response to customer requests, and
  • Putting the customer first and foremost.

 

Now, that being said, if the establishment promotes anything other than food service, i.e. entertainment, unusual atmosphere, then the server must conform to management standards and those management standards, not the servers, control the impact on tips.

 

What may be the standard for Chili's, Applebee's, TGIF's, Olive Garden, or any other specific chain, is not universal just as the standards for French Laundry, Babbo, or The Franciscan  are not universal. The establishment sets the standards for service, not the server.

 

If the management dictates a specific action, do it. The customers of that establishment expect it. If management does not dictate specific action(s), be very wary of "doing it your way" without being aware that whatever you think is right and proper may not be perceived by those who tip voluntarily. You, as a server, have one over-riding need, the need to get the customer to part with their money, do anything to offend the customer's sensibilities and watch your tip opportunity shrink before your eyes.

 

I do not voluntarily patronize casual dining chains because I object to management's attitude and approach. Why? Because I am an individual and I do not wish to be treated the way a majority of chain establishments have decided I should be treated. That is my choice and I exercise it freely.

 

 

 


Edited by PeteMcCracken - 9/16/11 at 10:33am
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Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #396 of 483

Pete

As we Scots would say 'Gaun yersel'!!!!!

post #397 of 483

I'll give you the abbreviated list. :)

 

1.  Not refilling drinks.

 

2.  Staff that spend twenty minutes chatting with a table of their friends; take a break to dump my food on my table, and then go back to chatting with their pals without seeing if I need anything. 

 

3.  Waiting twenty minutes to get the check when all the food and drinks are gone. 

 

4.  When they ask how the food is but don't take the answer seriously.  I was recently served a mouth searing course.  When the waitress asked how everything was, I said it was too hot to tell.  Rather than saying, oh I'm sorry or I hope you did not burn your mouth, she smirked and walked away. 

 

5.  When they act like they have not idea what I'm talking about.  Me: "I'll have the ravioli."  Waiter:  "Ummm, Which?  Show me."  I point out the only ravioli listed on the menu.  "Oh, you mean, ravioli in the style of the old woman who lived in the shoe."  Yes, the only ravioli you serve.

 

 

post #398 of 483

Just giving the general attitude problem, like they are better than you.

Chewing gum while taking your order

Automatically expect to receive (decent) tips after providing bad service

post #399 of 483

Recently at one of my favorite restaurants, the cork broke on the bottle as the server was opening it. It was obviously dried out and a sign the wine wasn't stored properly. The server decanted the wine and had us taste it.  We refused the bottle. It was not good.  The manager came over with a second bottle and said that if she opened it we had to accept it because she couldn't afford to have us keep refusing wine. Really? We are supposed to happily accept and pay $80 for a bad bottle of wine? We passed on the wine, finished our appetizers and left without ordering dinner. I refuse to be treated like that. There are too many really great restaurants in this town to suffer through that type of service.

post #400 of 483
Quote:
Originally Posted by eubbie View Post

Recently at one of my favorite restaurants, the cork broke on the bottle as the server was opening it. It was obviously dried out and a sign the wine wasn't stored properly. The server decanted the wine and had us taste it.  We refused the bottle. It was not good.  The manager came over with a second bottle and said that if she opened it we had to accept it because she couldn't afford to have us keep refusing wine. Really? We are supposed to happily accept and pay $80 for a bad bottle of wine? We passed on the wine, finished our appetizers and left without ordering dinner. I refuse to be treated like that. There are too many really great restaurants in this town to suffer through that type of service.



What a strange response considering most vendors will take back a bottle of bad wine? 

 

 

Personally though, I would never spend $80 on a bottle of wine. 

post #401 of 483
Quote:
Originally Posted by RosieMB View Post



What a strange response considering most vendors will take back a bottle of bad wine? 

 

 

Personally though, I would never spend $80 on a bottle of wine. 


I suppose the response would then indicate that the manager made the wine herself in her bathtub, or obtained it from a source nearly as dodgy.

 

--Lyle
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--Lyle
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post #402 of 483

We passed on the wine, finished our appetizers and left without ordering dinner.

 

Good for you, Eubbie!

 

One reason service, overall, is so bad is that far too many people accept shoddyness. It's easier to do that then make a fuss, they reason. So they accept an 80 dollar bottle of bad wine, or automatically leave a tip even if the service was bad, etc.

 

What they don't realize is that they're rewarding poor food and poor service. And maintaining shoddy practices. I would bet money, for instance, that the restaurant you were in decants that wine and uses it for its by-the-glass service.

 

Hopefully you contacted the owners and let them know why you won't be back.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #403 of 483

 

Inefficiency on the whole ... could run the gamut of A to Z ... Inefficiency on part of the server (s ) and / or the food being below par ... I have rarely encountered a nightmare over a dinner. On rare occasion, I have eaten at a poor choice lunch venue with colleagues or taken a suggestion from a workmate --- who does not share my " palate "  however, a lesson to be learnt and no returning for 2nds.   Happy Holidays. Margcata

post #404 of 483

I agreed I have had this happened to me many times before. I don't know if this is intentionally done or what but it just bugs me.

post #405 of 483

It seems to me that service people are trained not to make eye contact after the food is placed in front of you . If you need anything they forgot you cant get their attention. WE the American Public foster bad service. If its bad we tip anyway. DON'T,, leave a note telling them how bad they were . If you tip them they think they are doing a good job and won't improve. I learned that in anything the only way to get people to do anything is affecting them through their pocket. I know I sound terrible, but I am sick of bad service in particular bad service with an attitude. I think in some places the training must last at least 45 seconds or at least that is the way it seems..

 

Merry Christmas to all.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #406 of 483

I think it is time for a new thread?

 

post #407 of 483

The truth sometimes hurts.                   Merry Christmas

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #408 of 483
Quote:
Originally Posted by TKChef View Post

I think it is time for a new thread?

 


Well, it is at least time to switch from "Merry Christmas" to "Happy New Year!"

 

:-)

 

--Lyle
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--Lyle
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post #409 of 483

When there is a offer on, for example £10 for a meal if you leave the table before 7pm, and at 10 to 7 you ask for the bill, and they don't bring you it until past 7, so you end up paying extra.confused.gif

post #410 of 483

There are so many ways in which they can go wrong! My personal problem is when they are chatting to friends when you are obviously staring at them, coat on, money or card in hand to pay. I am not an impatient person (most of the time) and I dont mind waiting a reasonable time for a meal, particualrly if the restaurant is really busy and theres not many members of staff. However when its time to pay, that also means its time to go, and I hate how long it can take between - receiving the bill - them taking the card - the waiter producing a reciept, argh! 

post #411 of 483

Oh gosh how I hate it when the server goes into a litany of special drinks and lists all of them even though I have no intention to drink.  Also, when listing food specials please do so in a conversational tone.  If you spout it out like you've memorized a script I often don't understand a word of it.

 

The first question I always ask my server before they even have a chance to ask me what I'd like to drink is "what's your soup of the day?"  If the answer is 'I don't know" I instantly get a little ticked off.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chefedb View Post

It seems to me that service people are trained not to make eye contact after the food is placed in front of you . If you need anything they forgot you cant get their attention. WE the American Public foster bad service. If its bad we tip anyway. DON'T,, leave a note telling them how bad they were . If you tip them they think they are doing a good job and won't improve. I learned that in anything the only way to get people to do anything is affecting them through their pocket. I know I sound terrible, but I am sick of bad service in particular bad service with an attitude. I think in some places the training must last at least 45 seconds or at least that is the way it seems..

 

Merry Christmas to all.


I agree, I never feel obliged to leave a tip if the service is bad but I'm made to feel guilty by my dining companions.  When I waited tables I knew when I had made mistakes and how they impacted my tips and often I agreed with the customer that I should have taken better care - of course a lot of things were out of my control like giving me too many tables to keep up with, mistakes in the kitchen, or having to do extra duties like hostess when I shouldn't have had to do all those things at once.  I hear a lot of people say "I was a waitress once so I ALWAYS leave 20% because I know how it is."  Well I know how it is too but that doesn't mean I will always tip well just because I was once a waitress.  And call me crazy but anyone who's been a waitress knows that you get stiffed loads of times eventhough you've tried your hardest.  Sometimes people are cheap regardless of how well you treat them. 

 

Anyway, I don't think you should leave a note.  If I found a note like that on a table I'd throw it out and be ticked off.  Better to talk to a manager, then you'll see real results.

 

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #412 of 483

Empty drinks, if they hit empty so goes the tip.

 

 My number one pet peeve is "Do you need change?"  If they have the balls to ask that, I have the balls to leave next to nothing for the tip.  And a sub note on that, if they are not smart enough to bring change in small enough denominations for me to make change, they won't get much of a tip.  Here's an example: I give a $20 bill on a $9.75 bill and the waitperson brings back a $10 bill and twenty five cents, they are going to get a $.25 tip.  Surely they don't think that I am going to give them a $10 tip!  I tip well, but not THAT well (usually around 30% for good service).  And anyone that says that they get offended if a server brings back the proper change for someone to make a tip is usually a cheapskate that doesn't tip well anyway and is just using that as an excuse anyway to self justify not giving a proper tip.

 

If they disappear once the food is delivered and don't show up again until time to deliver the bill, but that kind of goes and and hand with the empty drinks.

 

And if they just can't seem to get things right.

post #413 of 483

This wasn't a server, but a guy at the meat department in a grocery store. Now I know that the word "tandoori" is pronounced as "tan dory". Thanks for the correction.

 

post #414 of 483

wait staff drops menu on table while looking other direction and racing madly somewhere else - infuriating!

 

 

post #415 of 483

Not doing their job?  :D

 

When you get exposed to what service should be where the waiter can tell you what the (blackboard) menu is, (has tried everything on it too) can honestly recommend according to what you are looking for, remembers your order sans notebook, shows up exactly when you need or want them without you feeling "hawked", is courteous and leaves you feeling comfortable...then you know when the server can't tell you anything about what is on the (permanent) menu, has tried less than half of it, tells you the special of the day is what they recommend (even though they only heard it was good), screws up your order (not talking a kitchen error but transcribes the wrong thing onto the notepad), is late with your order (as evidenced by the time under the lamp)  and never there to fill up your empty glass of water that you are practically begging for or "hawks" you when you pretty much obviously don't need anything and leaves you feeling like you need to leave to make room for the next 4 top....well you get the point.

 

Granted some places you kind of expect those respective levels of service but 20% is 20%, you work for it or you don't.  Lowered minimum wage aside, they have a job to do, plain and simple. 

 

If I were forced to pick one thing though it's not getting my food out when the order is ready. Those lamps are the death of an order and ever second that ticks by is one second closer to a bad experience.  I can understand this a little better when they are understaffed (not the servers fault but the host/manager/owner usually) and have to make up for it, and a good server will often be cognizant of this fact and relay that to you (yes often as an excuse: "sorry but we're so busy") which usually makes the situation much better...but when there are 3 servers and like 2 tables seated and your server never shows up and then brings you food that's been sitting....give me a break!  The sad part is they probably never make the connection to the 10% tip because there is a lot of inappropriate tippers out there anyway which muddies the waters. 

 

I should start just telling them...that would most likely be the best thing I can do for everyone...I dunno. 

post #416 of 483

 

#410 is a key difference between perfunctory and good service - good service keeps track of where you are in the meal and anticipates your needs, including the need to pay and get out when you're done.

 

I've learned to just walk over to the register and ask for the bill and pay it, if it doesn't turn up promptly at the table -- better than trying to get someone's attention to bring the bill, then trying to get someone's attention to take it away again, and then waiting for it to come back.

 

... and I still leave my standard 15-20%.  I think of it as part of the price.   I'm not managing the restaurant, and it's not *my* job to assess performance of staff.  Possibly good or bad feelings may bump the tip up or down a tad, but really, this whole petty-despot reward-or-punish thing is silly.  I just want some good food and drink and a chance to relax.  

 

 

 

 

post #417 of 483

The number one thing I abhor with a fury of a thousand demons are ditzy waitresses who try to be cute, with their nasal chirpy voices. Something about the way they look and sound makes me feel homicidal. There are so many restaurants I would love to patronize more but will not step foot inside because these girls are too annoying, and it out-weighs all other positive aspects of the dining experience.

 

I also don't like when they try to act flirty with my husband, and totally ignore me, thinking they're going to get a bigger tip if they honey-up to the man at the table. When that happens, I suggest to my husband he tips them a dollar, not a cent more. Nothing gives me more pleasure than sticking it to them like that. On the flip side, we tip overly well when we get good 'normal" servers.

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #418 of 483

My peeves include-

holding the water/drinks glasses by the rim. I don't know where your fingers have been.

Asking if I want change. 

My name is.... and I'll be your server. (who else would you be?)

Asking if the table is ready to order when we just got menus handed to us. 

I could probably repost this as a new thread but I've found that training for waitstaff in the US isn't up to the same level as training for cooks. In most restaurants there is no cohesive program for training the FOH and no concern that there should be one. Most of the time I have problem with the server, it isn't hard to figure out that the problem typically stems from management failing to have any ongoing training program for the employees. New hires seem to get handed off to someone else who may or may not know how to serve properly and nothing ever changes.This is true for chain and independent restaurants at all levels.  Perhaps the schools could offer a certificate in FOH  to at least establish some general awareness that there is a right and wrong way. 

Hospitality is not the same as service. 

post #419 of 483

In general a server should never touch the glass once it's on the table.

post #420 of 483

Sorry. Should have been more specific. 

Delivering drinks while holding glass by the rim. Convenient for them perhaps but not very sanitary.

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