An Overview Of Ways to Set Goals As a Restaurant Server
By Tom Seest
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Restaurant servers strive to ensure guests enjoy an exceptional dining experience. That means delivering food swiftly, answering inquiries promptly, and adhering to proper etiquette rules.
Servers should also become familiar with the menu so they can recommend dishes likely to draw customers back, which can increase net sales and customer satisfaction.
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Customer experience is of utmost importance at any restaurant, whether full-service or quick-service eatery, and servers play an integral part in how guests perceive their dining experience.
The best restaurant servers set clear goals that serve as guides for their actions, providing them with an effective means of measuring whether their efforts are producing positive customer dining experiences.
A great server should be able to recognize their guests’ needs, from responding quickly and appropriately when napkins or water glasses are requested to helping them choose between menu items. This skill takes practice and patience – but can make or break your service experience!
Adaptability is also key when it comes to making sure your restaurant staff can work efficiently. A busy restaurant will need people who know how to keep things moving as smoothly as possible – good servers know this, too!
Customers need to know when their orders will arrive and that tables are kept clean while asking customers about any allergies or dietary restrictions they might have. At the same time, making diners feel like part of your community is key!
A great server must also rely on their intuition when serving diners, taking note of diner preferences for self-selection or engaging with them for discussion of orders. This aspect of restaurant customer service requires extensive training.
Excellent service is at the core of every successful restaurant, yet creating staff with consistently high service levels can be challenging. By setting clear goals and then prioritizing tasks necessary to achieve them, restaurant servers can reach their full potential and thrive within your environment.
An effective restaurant server understands their job is to create a positive dining experience for their customers, quickly and efficiently attending to customer needs – such as taking orders accurately and delivering food. In addition, they must be able to accurately communicate any allergies or special requests with ease.
Your staff should also be trained to seek feedback from guests about their overall experience so they can work towards improving it before their next visit. Ideally, ensure they feel empowered enough to address problems as necessary and make your team stronger overall.
Create a uniform training program to ensure staff performance is at its peak, such as assigning one server specifically to train new hires on the job and create consistent customer service throughout your restaurant.
As soon as new servers join your restaurant, it’s crucial that they become acquainted with its layout. This may involve marking different sections and table numbers and discussing how hosts assign seating arrangements.
Assist your new servers in getting acquainted with the flow of your restaurant and prevent issues like confusion and blind spots from emerging. For example, not marking taken tables could result in your new server accidentally seating guests at inappropriate sections/tables; should this occur quickly, make sure to reseat them immediately.
Restaurants rely heavily on word-of-mouth recommendations and repeat business to drive sales, so servers play an integral role in both of these processes. Their recommendations must reflect customers’ tastes and preferences for optimal sales results.
As part of their service, servers should provide honest and impartial menu recommendations to their guests. To achieve this, they can conduct an initial interview about each guest’s likes and dislikes before suggesting dishes they think will suit their tastes best.
An effective strategy for making recommendations is through discovery questions (questions that help uncover more about the guest), listening attentively, and then suggesting dishes based on what the guest says they desire – this technique is known as upselling and can help increase sales significantly.
An effective upsell method involves suggesting dishes that pair perfectly with guests’ beverages or appetizers, encouraging them to order additional food, and potentially yielding additional tips for servers.
Servers who are trained in making suggestions that complement drinks or appetizers can increase sales by 13%, helping increase profits while building customer loyalty. This approach can increase profits while simultaneously growing a loyal customer base.
Upsells work best when servers are familiar with and experienced in trying out each dish they recommend to guests then explaining why it pairs with their order. One strategy may be offering to show guests their dish before discussing how it pairs together with what has already been ordered.
If a restaurant server is underperforming, managers must devise an action plan designed to boost their performance. Setting specific and measurable goals will make reaching these targets simpler for them while also instilling urgency to achieve them.
Repeat customers are the cornerstone of a restaurant’s success: they increase sales, create new business opportunities, and help increase profits.
One key way to keep customers returning to your restaurant is by offering them an outstanding experience every time they visit – this means offering high-quality food and exceptional customer service, as well as creating an atmosphere that welcomes and comforts them.
Implement a loyalty program as another means of driving repeat business and increasing repeat visits to your restaurant. A loyalty program should aim at rewarding frequent patrons with special discounts or offers when they return. Implementing this using restaurant software, which enables the creation and tracking of such loyalty programs, can build relationships while driving repeat business.
Your restaurant software could track how often a particular menu item is ordered, then text loyal patrons when there’s an offer that matches up with what they previously ordered. This provides an efficient, cost-effective method of getting them back and ordering again.
If your restaurant offers mobile ordering, servers can send orders directly from a customer’s table directly to the kitchen – this reduces the wait time between servers and customers and enhances their overall experience.
Customer service is of utmost importance in order to attract and retain customers, so training your staff effectively is of vital importance. This could involve hiring experienced employees, providing training and providing the support necessary for them to perform their duties effectively.
An important component of restaurant success lies in customer service, and servers play an essential role in reaching that goal. Not only can servers ensure guests receive exceptional service, but they can also set goals for themselves to help ensure continuous improvement and set benchmarks against which other servers can measure themselves against.
In order to meet their goals, it’s essential that employees have a firm grasp on what their responsibilities and expectations are. For instance, servers’ goals might include helping guests navigate the menu and answering any inquiries from guests.
They can accomplish this by offering suggestions tailored to individual customer preferences and dietary restrictions, creating rapport with them by being familiar with all available food and beverage offerings without being pushy in their recommendations.
Additionally, suggesting additional menu items can also increase a customer’s bill and tip. For instance, if they remain hungry after dining, suggesting dessert options that will satisfy them further could help increase both bills and tips.
Increased beverage sales are another effective strategy to help restaurants increase average checks. Our restaurant customer base represents 35.2 percent of total beverage sales; so this should be your focus if you want to see higher revenue.
One way to motivate servers to upsell is with guest entertainment, such as free trivia or tabletop games playable on tablet computers – studies have proven these guest entertainment options can significantly increase check averages.
Building a clear strategy to increase sales is the cornerstone of restaurant success in 2022. An example goal could be increasing monthly net restaurant sales by 15%; however, as this goal may not be achievable for every establishment, it would be wiser to start with more realistic objectives.
Please share this post with your friends, family, or business associates who may become or are restaurant servers.