Guest service is a pet peeve of mine. Whenever I go out to eat, I watch intently. I watch the servers, the bartenders, the runners, the entire front of house team but I also watch the reactions of the patrons in the dining room.
I observe to see if they are happy, annoyed, confused, satisfied. I’m curious if they pick out the same issues with their service as I observe.
The front of house team often appear stressed, over worked and/or disinterested in their level of service. Have they been trained properly I ask myself? I also ask do they enjoy what they are doing? Why are they here? A great server focuses on each table separately. No two tables in a given night are ever the same. Even though they focus and approach the table separately, the great servers never lose sight of always following service etiquette regardless of what is unfolding around them.
This weekend while in Mystic, CT I had the distinct pleasure of being served by one of these great servers. I was served on the proper side, brought clean and polished silverware, had my water glass filled without asking and probably most surprising was that not once did I have to reach for the bottle of wine and fill my own wine glass.
Marjanne, you exceeded my expectations, thank you.
My hope is that if you are a server (or hold any front of the house position), you take the time to learn the true definition of service etiquette and employ each and every point on each and every shift.
If you are a manager or owner, I urge you to train your team properly and hold them to every standard on a consistent basis. By doing so you will have a very happy team but more importantly, a very happy guest base that will spread the word about your dedication to service. There is no more cost effective method of marketing than word of mouth marketing.