Most managers prefer their staff to appear ready and willing to take on their shifts, mainly because the amount of stress put onto a staff member during service may be all over their face if they aren’t!

None of us want customers to feel worried about their meals when their waiter appears to be running around in different directions, dropping utensils or repeating questions too often. This kind of behavior warrants customers to feel uneasy and most likely never return to your venue again, as they may lead to feeling sorry for their waiter and question the integrity of your business. There is definitely an effect that stems straight from your floor staff, as they basically are the face of your establishment when you’re not around, leaving them as the direct line of communication towards customers. Because of this pressure, it’s important that your staff know what they’re getting into before each service, so that they can find the positive factors within work and give off an overall encouraging and reassuring attitude towards clients.

The clues on your face:

Unfortunately for most of us, everything on our minds can be read on our faces. There is no escaping this, there is only methods to stray from feeling the ‘stress’ of the industry during a hectic shift. Body language is also a key factor that escapes our notice, but definitely not the prying eyes of customers. You’ll begin to understand that most customers that enter without a large group or a partner that they are particularly close with will direct most of their attention to the staff, allowing their eyes to linger on the strained pressure and detailed orders the floor staff must adhere to. They more they watch, the more they ‘try’ to understand what is happening, slowly forming an impression of their meal before it lands in front of them.

This type of customer behavior is also quite normal, so we must rely on our staff being confident and able to handle any type of situation within limits in their position. A confident server will deliver answers when needed and attend to their tables at all times, noticing anything that has been missed, needs topping up or suggesting to their customers. The more a server continues with these practical matters, the easier it will be for them to maintain a calm composure and steady flow of communication whenever needed. They understand the floor, the kitchen and the menu- so of course, they can withhold the impatience of customers and the venue’s stressful ups and downs.

Inform your Team:

As stated before, by letting your team know what they are in for before each shift will help them control their composure and decision making during service. Each day brings a different type of customer and a varied work flow, so by allowing management to accurately plan a system that allocates certain floor staff members to specific tables, they will be able to feel comfortable within the area over time and pick up a natural rhythm. There’s nothing better than witnessing a server that knows exactly what to do in any situation, they glide around the venue and tidy up, speak to customers, whilst also checking up on other staff all on one trip to the kitchen. That’s the trick, you have to make sure you always look busy, so that customers naturally begin to feel trust towards you and understand that their service will be handled perfectly.

Push Certain Menu Items:  

With confidence comes the appeal and ability to profit on customers throughout service, as they begin to admire your dedication to their table, they will also begin to listen. This is the time where pushing higher rated menu items to maximize profits and force customers to try different types of dishes will benefit you as a server and the rest of the team. Chef’s love to prepare dishes that aren’t usually chosen, because of course, it can get boring pushing those same plates out and ready to serve. The key to getting the customer to agree to a different choice of meal will of course be due to the accuracy and smooth talking nature of your salesmen ability. Don’t push too much, but let the customer know what the dish will give them compared to that of an ordinary salad or chicken meal. A good amount of customers will realize that you’re right, they came out to experience a different dining experience, so why not choose quality over their usual meal order. By doing this regularly, a good margin of profit will be made, assuring that balance will be acquired within the system of your business.

Working in the industry we all know that stress is a usual emotion felt during service, and something that takes time to avoid. The first step in handling this type of emotion is by accepting and acknowledging it, then trying to understand your surroundings to tackle the problem head on. We want our customers to feel comfortable and reassured when they are being served and looked after within the venue, so make that a priority an work out a system that fits within this concept.