People love going out to cafes to share a cup of coffee or a sandwich with friends and family. For many consumers, dining out is their entertainment for the week. As such, it’s important that cafe owners and staff make guests feel welcome. Here are four tips that will help them do that.
No one likes to go into a restaurant to eat and feel like they are invisible to the staff. Hosts, waitstaff and other front-of-the-house workers should acknowledge new guests when they come in. If the server who will wait on them can’t get to them right away, he or she should at least say hello. Even taking a drink order can go a long way toward making guests feel like they’re not being ignored.
In recent years, team service has become more popular. Team service is where everyone in the restaurant takes care of guests. This might mean a server may run another server’s food out to a table or a bartender may deliver a drink to guests in the dining room. A manager or a busser may box up food for a table. This ensures prompt service and makes guests feel at home.
When you don’t properly train your staff, you’re asking them to give poor customer service. What may be obvious to you is not obvious to them. For example, you know it’s best to pick up dirty dishes as you walk by a table. An untrained person may not know this. Don’t expect them to. If you can train in-house, do so. If not, there are plenty of online restaurant training resources that will help you get your staff up to speed on topics, like upselling, listening and dining room awareness.
It’s also very important to avoid overbooking. Few things will irritate customers more than having to wait 30 or 40 minutes past their reservation time. However, as a small café that may or may not even take reservations, this means that it’s hard to anticipate when the influx of customers will come. However, whenever you know that you’re reserving lots of space for a party, call in the cavalry of your staff to make sure that you don’t become understaffed for the rest of the café that’s open.
No restaurant guest wants to feel ignored and unwelcome. However, this can happen if a cafe’s staff isn’t well-trained or if the restaurant gets overbooked. Good service requires dedication and teamwork. If you follow the tips listed in this post, you’ll go a long way towards ensuring that your guests feel taken care of.