This is pretty straight forward; I’m going to tell you my list of how to be a good customer at a restaurant. Please keep in mind that this is just my opinion via personal experience and what I would do if I was out eating.
Thus, I present to you, my “How to Be a Good Customer Part 1”!
If there’s a wait, it’s for a reason, and it may not be for the reason you think…
When you go to a restaurant and they say, “there will a wait time of X minutes”, there is a really good reason for the wait. Allow me to list off reasons why there is a wait at a restaurant.
- There are no available tables
- The kitchen is far behind and needs to catch up
- The servers are far behind and need time to catch up
- The managers have asked for a wait for their own reasons
Empty tables line the restaurant but there are other reasons keeping you from getting a table immediately. Could the host/server seat you at a table which would allow you to grab a few drinks and get familiar with the menu while you wait? Yes. But most companies would rather not even have the opportunity for an order to be put into the computer. Please, grab a seat by the door, ask for a menu/drink, and be patient, you’ll get a table in no time.
Your food is being prepared without compromise to quality and speed…
Allow me to explain what I meant by “without compromise to quality and speed”. Whether you ordered a steak, a salad, or a slab of ribs, everything has its own timetable and preparation. The cook can’t change the way the dish is prepared to appease you. If you order a well done steak, with a side of mashed potatoes and broccoli, the cook has to follow a very specific way to prepare the dish. Your steak is going to take longer than a medium-rare steak. The broccoli must be at the right temperature and the potatoes must have the right texture and toppings. Asking your server , “Can you see if they can speed things up?” is ignorant and impatient. You didn’t want to wait twenty minutes for your meal? Order a salad next time. Understand that your meal along with every other meal in the restaurant must be prepared properly and by company standards. Stop trying to change this.
Touching, Swearing, Yelling, and Patronizing is bad, m’kay?
Your server has a name. I know this may sound like a strange concept but your server usually greets you by saying, “Hello, my name is *insert name* and I’ll be taking care of you” because it’s warm, inviting, and, prepare yourself, now you know their name. Servers are people, just like you, and it’s disrespectful and irritating to be called, “Hey you”. Touching your server, whether it be a tap on the shoulder, a poke to the back, or the grabbing of an arm, is never okay. Use the person’s name. Further, mistakes can and will happen from time to time. Your steak was overcooked. Perhaps you received fries instead of a baked potato. That means you should yell, scream, patronize, and cuss at your server, right? The angrier you become and the more you make that anger known means the server will be more inclined to continue providing excellent service and get the problem fixed immediately, right? If you answered yes to any of this you are the type of customer the servers spend time in the back slinging insults towards for copious amounts of time. Follow the golden rule and your dining experience, as well as your server’s experience serving you, will be ultimately more delightful.
Look for Part II coming soon!