Friday, May 23, 2014
Saying Please and Thank You
Well on this one occasion it was the end of the night and the last table. The guy is cleaning up and I mention that I am ordering a dessert and am going to ring it in now. A few minutes later I notice he is still cleaning and I ask if he is going to start the dessert. Then he says, well I was waiting for a please and thank you.
I was a bit shocked. I replied back do I have to say please and thank you to you every time I have to get something from you. It is your job I replied. It is the guest that ordered it and not I. I then added if I being a waiter had to wait for please and a thank you from the guest each time they wanted something I would never flip a table. Don't be a waiter I said to him. If he needed please and thank you stay out of the dining room.
In fact another line of work might be in order. Now maybe he was having an off day and something else was going on but I hope he doesn't expect please and thank you every place he works.
He is a good guy and after that nothing has been mentioned of it since. Except when he asked me to run some plates out for him and he said thank you. I said that is nice but it is my job to run food. It is not necessary to say thanks unless he wants to.
It is always nice and polite to show good manners amongst co-workers and perhaps it was presumptuous on my part to expect him to stop cleaning with please and thank you but when we are serving or making food the only people which we really should be thanking and pleasing are the guests. That should be mandatory all the time and amongst ourselves left for those times when we really need something on the fly.
I don't know the number of times sorry, excuse me, behind you, happens between waiters on a shift but I know it happens a lot. If we have to add please and thank you each time we get a drink or our order from the kitchen I am not going to have much left to say to the guests.
I think servers and bartenders rank way up there as the most polite people on this earth. What about you? Any thoughts?
Radio talk show host of "The Hospitality Industry News Network" and author of "You Only Live Once" about his early years traveling around and working on ships and foreign countries Steven blogs about his thoughts on the restaurant industry as he sees it today.
Check out his web site at www.stevennicolle.com for more information.