I have worked as a restaurant server for over 6 years trying to work my way through college. Waiting tables as a server was a great way to make decent money while also having a flexible schedule, so I could attend college as well. I think that I did well as a server. I usually made at least 20 to 25 percent in tips and never really had any complaints. I thought I would give my fellow servers, or people thinking of serving, a few good tips on how to increase your tips. In this installment I will give you two great tips to help increase what you bring home a night in tips.
Tip # 1 Make the Guest Happy.
As a server in a restaurant, you should always remember that the customers actually pay your salary. The restaurant does pay you an hourly rate, but it is usually less than 3 dollars an hour. Usually my hourly rate barely covered my payroll taxes. You need to try to give the best customer service possible, because the tips you make from the customer are your real salary in the restaurant. The happier you make your guest, usually the larger your tip will be. There are exceptions, like in anything else. Some people are just not good tippers. Overall, you will find out that you will average better in the long run if you continue to please the customer the best way you can. I am not saying to let the customer run over you, but try to do anything to make the customer happy.
Tip # 2 Don’t Give Discriminating Service
As a server, you should treat all guest equal and give the same quality service to every table you serve the restaurant. It is no secret in the service industry that there are many people that feel certain types of people don’t tip as good as others. I want to say that it doesn’t matter what race, sex, or age your guest is, there are people that sometimes will not tip as good. I have known servers that give mediocre service to a table that they predetermine are bad tippers. I have had great success giving great service to all tables. If you get a bad tip, just suck it up and forget it. If you give great service to all types of people, you will make it up in the long run. The only color that should matter as a server is green.
Tip # 3 Know Your Menu
I believe that a knowledgeable server, will be a more successful server. If you really know your menu, you will appear to be more professional to your guests. If your guests see that you are dedicated to your job and know your menu, they may be impressed. Also if you have to ask a lot of other employees guest questions that you can not answer, you will waist a lot of time that could be used in serving your guests at the restaurant.
These are just a few tips on how to help increase the amount of tips you make as a restaurant server. Look for more articles to come soon in this series. I hope that this advice will help. Just remember you are a “server”. If you serve the guest to the best of your ability, you should make more money in the long run.