Ben Libbey: We tip for prompt service |

Ben Libbey: We tip for prompt service

Ben Libbey

Rita, I would like to remind you about what tips are really about.

Having served tables before, I know what a headache it is to have the kitchen provide the best service for guests is about. I know that a server can only do so much as to providing prompt service for a guest.

That being said, there are many things a server can do to provide prompt service for a guest.

The bill being presented, received and taken care of is totally within the server’s realm of responsibility. Yes, servers are paid low wages, but let me remind you of what tips are about. “TIPS” stands for “To Insure Prompt Service.”

When a server does not do what they are in control of to do this, do they deserve a tip? In you example, the only complaint was with the service that the server was providing them with at the end of their meal. This is the most important time to convey to the guest that you are doing everything in your control to please them. My guess is that the server also neglected them other times during the meal. Whether that server was overwhelmed with other tasks I do not know.

I do know this, though: As a professional server, it is your job to ensure prompt service. If you don’t communicate and justify what is going on, the tip will show it.

To the people leaving a lousy tip, please make sure you communicate to the server why you did so in order to have them serve better in the future.

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