As servers we spend a lot of our time speaking with the guests, and I’m not just talking about taking orders and answering questions, but also small talk and conversations. If it’s busy we can get into a routine of getting straight to the point of taking orders and moving on as quickly as we can. There’s one line that should always be used when serving your tables, and it’s a simple one.
Just put yourself in this situation, you sit down with some friends at a restaurant, you settle in, pick up a menu, start to look at it then your server comes on over with a smile on their face and asks:
“Hi, how are you today?”
See how simple that is? It is by far the best way to engage your guests at the start. It’s a question that you, your guests, your friends, your colleagues and practically everyone you come in contact with enjoys hearing, why? because everyone’s favorite subject is themselves, and this question is aimed directly at them. Your tables want you to ask them how they are and not “what can I get you to drink?”. It shows that you’re a person and not just a server who takes orders, delivers food and drinks, tends to tables needs, and at the end takes the payment then the experience is done.
If I’m eating out I really enjoy getting into a conversation with my server (providing I’m not holding them up if they are busy) and making that personal connection. It helps the server relax and makes my table easier to approach.
On occasion you will get tables that are not interested at all in conversation or would just prefer to chat among themselves. Don’t feel bad, it’s just how some people like do things when they eat out.
Of course you don’t have to just use the line “Hi, how are you today?” every time you greet your tables, there are a whole bunch of other things you can say when you first speak with your guests to break the ice, but I do recommend you ask your table how they are because it’s an easy starter, and their response will help you get a read on them.
Please feel free to give your opinion or comment on this or any of my posts. I do reply to everyone and appreciate your feedback.
Thanks and have a super awesome day!