A couple of questions

So, I have 2 questions.  These question is from the entire restaurant industry to anyone who has ever done this:

Let’s say a restaurant has 20 pristinely clean, empty and ready to be sat tables.  In the smack dab middle of those 20, there is one table with half empty drinks, napkins in the seats of the chairs, check presenter on the table, dirty silverware, and a dessert plate with a half eaten piece of pie on it.

First question:  Part A.  Why is the dirty table the most attractive table to sit at?  Even assuming this restaurant is a “seat yourself” type of place.  Why is that the table that you inevitably seat yourself at? and let’s say the restaurant is not a “seat yourself” type of place, (Part B:) why do you seat yourself?
This behavior consistently baffles me.  Of course as a manager I am dedicated to the guest experience.  So even when guests do this, I either clean the table myself, or send someone directly over to get it cleaned off and bring the table menus.  Hopefully they have a good time, and yes, we should have greeted them at the front door, and the table shouldn’t be left dirty, but in the real world, some things get missed.  I’m just curious as to what draws people to the one dirty table in the middle of a room filled with clean ones.Second Question:  Ok so, let’s say there are 2 tables that are exactly the same distance from the door , window, bathrooms, same lighting, same position, they are right next to each other.  Why is it, when the host wants to seat you at one of the two identical tables, you say something along the lines of “Uh… Can we sit there” and point to the other table.  I can fully understand booth vs. table, window seat vs. non-window seat, inside vs. outside, not sitting by the bathroom, kitchen, or any high traffic door, not wanting to sit next to crying baby, or if you want to sit in a particular servers section.  Those requests are what I’m curious about.

You want to sit at the other table, that’s fine, by all means, do that. There are very few instances that we won’t make that happen for you (We need it for a reservation coming later) The question is WHY??? Here are some things you don’t realize:  Maybe that server just got double sat, and you would make it a triple?  (Just have another server take the table). Well, if it was that easy it wouldn’t be any trouble at all, however servers are a very territorial crew.  Even if you give 1 table from server A’s section to server B, I’m going to hear about it.  OR the poor hosts are going to get barked at, and one of the main things you need a host to do is to smile, and it’s hard to do that when you have a bunch of angry servers yelling at you.

Again like I said, I am going to try and do everything in my power to make sure that you have a great time at any restaurant that I am working, however these 2 behaviors genuinely confuse me, and I was hoping that someone out there had a reasonable explanation for them.

So, as you go out to eat this weekend, please realize that these behaviors are at the very least, slightly irrating and most of the time, quite frustrating.  Please avoid them at all cost.  Also know that if you do these things, it’s not like we hate your guts or anything, it just that, you are making it a bit more difficult for us to take great care of you.

If you have an answer to any of the question I posed feel free to comment below, Thanks for reading.

One thought on “A couple of questions

  1. Wonderful questions! I, too, am curious about these things. My only comment is that unless you've worked in a restaurant, you probably don't know these little tidbits about how the servers sections work and how we try to be fair to servers and sit them equally. My dad has commented before \”Well, there's open tables so I don't know why we have to wait\” to me, and I've explained there are plenty of reasons why…maybe the server for those sections aren't in yet (especially during transitional periods like 2-4 pm). Or maybe those tables are reserved. Or our party isn't big enough for that table, they need to save it in case a larger party comes in. I'm convinced that everyone should serve at some point in their lives, you really understand how to be a great customer if you've been on the other side. P.s. I know it says I'm Anonymous, but this is Sarah Allbritten lol.

    Like

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