Restaurants are now a flourishing, profitable and popular business in the country. Even celebrities have opened their restaurants. But I feel little attention is being paid to the recruitment of qualified,experienced and good waiters. By a good waiter I mean one who is smart, has a pleasing personality & good manners. Instead rude, argumentative and greedy waiters are being inflicted upon unsuspecting customers. I would like to share some of my experiences.
Our 1st year batch in hostel consisted of 17 girls and it was our first outing on our own after getting Freshers Welcome party. Just as we were entering a restaurant in Bhopal (thats where I did my B.E. from), a waiter came and started counting us like 1..2..3 !!!!!! As if we were some beggars lining up to eat at some temple to eat free food!!! We should have walked out but we didn’t…God knows why! The service was horribly late and the food wasn’t worth the price. (Shall I reveal the name of the restaurant to save any future customers?)
At a party with colleagues in a popular restaurant, one of my colleagues felt her glass has got mixed up with other glasses kept on table. So she asked the waiter to give a new one. But the waiter said pointing at a glass in front of her “This is a new one. I just filled it with water”. Still this girl wanted a new one. He started shouting at her saying “I’m saying this is a new one. Why don’t you drink from that one?” Till then we were quiet but after this I gave the waiter a piece of my mind (somehow the guys in our group are insipid and spineless lot) and said “How can you talk to a customer like that? Will a glass of water cost too much to the restaurant? Are we not paying?”. Then I told him to stop looking after our table and we want to change our waiter. He went off grumbling in a huff. We complained to the owner but he didn’t seem to care as if few less customers didn’t make a difference to his booming business.
Yesterday again at a party with colleagues in another new and popular restaurant, we were sitting in the open air section when it started raining. Luckily our order hadn’t arrived and we moved inside to another table. We were a group of 12 people. While I was placing the order (I m the official order-placer tip-decider waiter-handler in our group at every party..Sigh!) I’d just said the name of one dish when the waiter interrupted me saying “This wont be enough”!!!!!!!! As if I have never eaten at a restaurant before or we looked like bunch of 12 people who would eat only one dish !!! Come on nobody does that..not even the most miserly people. After I had completed he repeated same sentence again. I said “Don’t worry, we will order again if there is a shortage.” While waiting for dessert, lights went out and candles were lit & placed on upturned glasses!!!! Okay I understand they may not be familiar with the concept of candle sticks. At the end I left an adequate tip but the waiter said “Your group made us change tables. Atleast give some more tip.” OMG!!!!! As if we had asked the rain to fall!! I mean since when did waiters start harassing customers for tip??? I gave him a stare and joined my group who had already gone outside.
There are still many incidents that I don’t remember…consisting of ogling at the girls of any group, improperly dressed waiters with Salman Khan’s Tere Naam hairstyle, overhearing talk and even commenting on it etc. etc.
The reasons for hiring such incompetent and ill mannered waiters may be any of these;
# Saving costs by keeping such amateur staff at low salaries.
# Unavailability of trained and experienced waiters.
# Ignorance of the employers regarding marketing strategies and thumb rules of a good service.
# The employer being of the same nature as that of the staff.
# The employer being indifferent towards the golden rule “Customer is the King” and being arrogant of huge profits.
Whatever maybe the reason, I feel the employers should learn a few things about the restaurant business and not run it like a grocery shop.
P.S. Do I only tend to attract such rude waiters or have you also experienced such incidents?