J is for Are we Being Judged by the Waitstaff?

Are we Being Judged by the Waitstaff?

“Do not judge, and you will never be mistaken.”  —Jean Jacques Rousseau

Judgment is not bad; it’s part of human nature. We are instinctively hard-wired for survival, and our brain will quickly access every situation to help us avoid danger, but some humans may take this too far and use it to make false statements about others. We cannot judge accurately without having the entire picture before us.

You may have heard about “The Waiter Rule.” This rule suggests that how we treat the waitstaff can reveal much about our personalities. Bill Swanson, SEO of Raytheon, put together Swanson’s Unwritten Rules of Management, and many other CEO’s and management experts agree with this assessment. If a person can be charming to you but rude to those in subordinate roles you are not dealing with a nice person.

But on the flip side, have you ever felt it was the waitstaff judging you? After all, they are human too. Perhaps you unintentionally annoyed the waitstaff at a restaurant. Are they quick to write you off as a horrible person and provide less than friendly service?

Keep in mind, serving others day in and day out can be exhausting especially when you’re not being treated properly. So if you find yourself being judged perhaps you should incorporate some proper dining etiquette into your dining experience.

Some of the top complaints from servers to avoid:

Don’t be impatient, let them do their job. At many establishments, proper greeting and other protocols are put in place to provide you with better service. Your impatience may prevent them from doing their job correctly making the experience unpleasant and uncomfortable.

Don’t be rude and condescending. If the waitstaff is doing their best but the kitchen is not running correctly, it’s not their fault. Call the manager.

Don’t use your cell phone when entering or ordering they don’t want to interrupt your call and it’s not always easy to decipher hand gestures. Also, don’t leave it on the table it will be vulnerable to accidental spills.

Do tip properly. Waitstaff are most likely being paid a tipping wage, and their tips are valuable income. If you have a coupon, do not use the discounted amount to tip, use the total of the original bill before the discount. Especially when you received excellent service.

Don’t go to a restaurant ten minutes before closing and then stay chatting with friends. Be respectful and make it quick, you are holding everyone hostage, and they want to go home. Afterall it’s closing time. However, should you find yourself in this situation be sure and leave an extra tip for the extra time.

Don’t pretend it’s your birthday when it’s not. But by all means when it is, and you are visiting one of your favorite establishments, please let them know. We all like to celebrate and making a regular customer happy is good for business. Don’t forget to give a little extra to the waitstaff for their additional service.

Don’t boss your server around. Treat the staff with the same respect and kindness you would like in return.

Do teach your children table manners and never let them roam the restaurant by themselves. Both the patrons and the staff will be happy to have well-behaved children sitting beside them or at their table. No one is happy with an unmanageable child when they are trying to have an enjoyable dinner.

In closing, remember we are judging creatures, but we should make it a practice to judge fairly and with kindness. Remember we never know the whole story behind the grumpy waitstaff or irritable restaurant patron. They may have gone through something harrowing moments ago and therefore are not at their best at the moment. So have a little patience, be considerate and treat everyone you encounter they way you wish to be addressed.

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About Ann Zuraw

Ann Zuraw, the voice behind "Chicks, Chat and Change", is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®), and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA™). If you have comments on this post contact Ann Zuraw

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