note: i mainly work with a bunch of college kids, many of whom have never worked in a restaurant before. Most of them are also utterly devoid of common sense. Case in point--we keep cocktail sauce, sour cream, and tartar sauce by the window where we pick up our orders. They are kept in a container of ice to keep them cold. At the end of the night they're changed into clean pans, the melted ice is dumped, and they're put in the refrigerator. Or that's how it's supposed to be done--99.9% of the kids re-ice the sauces and THEN put them in the refrigerator the first time(and sometimes the 2nd and 3rd time) they have it as side work. When i point out that you don't have to ice something that's going into a cold refrigerator they look at me like i'm retarded every. single. time.
the other night one of server A's tables decided that they wanted to pay for one of my tables. My table was a young couple and a baby throwing alphabits everywhere, and their tab was about $30.00. A came over to me while i was ringing their food up to tell me that her table wanted mine's ticket. Okay, no problem...yeah right. Like most restaurants we do server banking, no cash register, and A couldn't figure out how we'd accomplish this feat. Then again, A also can't figure out how much change to give a customer back without using a calculator. I've actually seen her enter $30.00 minus $25.75 into the big adding machine sitting by the credit card machine. Yeah.
i told A that i've had other tables pick up other servers' tickets in the past, and it's no big deal. I just do the following: if they're using a credit card i tell them since there are 2 separate tickets with 2 separate servers i'll have to run their card twice. That way everyone's finances and tips stay separate and it avoids confusion (and if you don't trust your co-worker it keeps them from having the opportunity of claiming to be short changed). I've never had any problems with it and i've never had anyone not get tipped. A: blank look, followed by "if they're using a card can't i just add up the 2 tickets, charge them the total amount, and give you cash?" Me: "I suppose you could, but why go to all that trouble? This way our tips stay separate too." A: blank look.
as it turns out there were 3 people at A's table, one of them paid for their tab and another paid for my table. Even easier, right? Hell no--A came over to me with the 2 credit cards, totally lost. I handheld her through running the card for her ticket, then i ran the other card for my table's ticket. You'd think this would be the end of it--and you would be wrong. A never brought me back my ticket or credit slip and i had to go into her section to find it laying on her table. The person had tipped me 20%, and i told my table that they were good to go, another table had paid for them and tipped me, everything was taken care of. My table got all weirded out and acted like a stalker might be waiting for them out in the parking lot. They collected their alphabits spewing baby and made a run for it.
later A came up to me and told me that since i hadn't given her the tip i should at least sweep under one of her tables to make it up to her. Uh...what? Trying to figure out what she was talking about i said "oh, did they not tip you on your ticket?" "Yeah, they tipped me." Me: long pause. "And why would i give you the tip they left ME on MY ticket?" "Because it was my table, you didn't wait on them." "Yeahhh...but they tipped you for your service on your tab, and then paid for my table and tipped me for that. Why would you get my tip on top of what your table chose to leave for you?" "You should of at least given me half."
at which point my head exploded. (actually the above conversation went around in circles for a good 10 plus minutes. If i typed all that out your head would explode too).
Server Besieged by Surly Customers
2 weeks ago