Simple satisfaction. Complicated communication. Great gratuity. Rushed remembering. These are only some perks and and not-so-great aspects of being a waitress. Of course there’s the cliches: putting on that cheesy smile and “show” only to please the most finicky of customers so you can obtain a nice chunk of change in your pocket. Yet, to me, there’s more to it than that. In my third summer of serving at a local pizza restaurant, I have learned a lot, and feel that I’ve come a long way when it comes to the job in particular, and customer service in general.
It’s not all about forcing yourself to be as friendly as possible…it’s about being natural, not faking it, and showing that you actually have an interest in the customer and are willing to be open to them, wanting to serve them in the best way possible…even if they appear completely uninterested in you and could care less about your life, why your working, and that you slave your ass off trying to scrape up some cash for college.
I never had as great as an appreciation for servers everywhere, until I became one myself. It’s amazing how when you’re sitting down to eat, enjoying your luscious meal, you are completely oblivious to the subservient servers bustling around attaining endless tasks to be fulfilled in an impossible amount of time. There’s really more than meets the eye. Yet, when you’re on top of your game, you appear calm, cool and collected to everyone. That’s part of the challenge. Don’t give away when you’re stressed to the max and on the verge of tears due to the overwhelming bearing of orders…instead, remain calm! If the customers pick up on your tense-ness, they’ll most likely leave a lesser tip, or in contrary, feel terrible for you and tip more…but that’s not usually the case. They probably wouldn’t want to see you again serving them!
Teamwork. That’s essential. I have learned, somewhat painfully, that it’s not an all for one job. It’s a one for all job. When there’s a dinner rush, and you are slow, you have to pick up what others are struggling with. Take tables in other sections, run food for them and constantly ask what they need. Not only is that common courtesy, but it’s a must when everyone’s running around like a chicken with their head cut off. Basically, you’re not only serving those hungry customers, but you’re also serving your co-workers.
Basically it’s a constant run around. On your feet for up to 6 hours straight, taking orders, remembering everything, knowing pretty much everything about the place, serving food, swiping credit cards, giving change, cleaning tables, helping others and doing other various, seemingly endless, side work. It’s a fun job, though. When you get happy, chill people with easy orders, it’s a breeze. And at the end of the day when you have a nice pocket of collected tips, it’s worth it. I don’t let the challenges get in my way. I may be forgetful at times, but I will do my best to be apologetic and show that I care for my fault and was truly sorry. In the end, it really does pay off, literally, and gives you fantastic experience, hard work and responsibility in the field of customer service!