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Waiters I Would Never Tip

These days every action is a sale. Although in the past nobody defined communication as a market and put objective prices for such non-material goods, society now has a tendency to evaluate them. Even two new terms have been coined for this selling and buying process – providing and using services. What happens in most cases is that the seller first sets the rules and then tells what the price is. However, there is still one sphere in which the customer manages the money matters.

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It is about giving feedback about the quality of the employees’ work. One of the examples of the situation when the client’s opinion is also important is tipping waiters in restaurants or cafes. The waiters usually make their living mainly from money received from the customers, so the former appreciate when the latter leaves some amount. As the study of Lynn and Sturman showed, the visitors “tipped an extra two percent of the bill for each additional point they rated service on a five-point scale” (6).

For the purpose of service quality improvement, sometimes special techniques are developed for the servers in order to help them earn more, but their behavior may still be not suitable. Of course, the actions that can cause irritation and anger, which then result in the lack of desire to give a tip, vary from person to person. Consequently, there is no point in complete generalization, and I would like to stop on the aspects that I dislike the most. These can be divided into three groups: paying too much attention to me as to the customer and, contrarily, being totally indifferent, and insisting on a tip.

Firstly, when one comes to a place to eat without self-service, it still does not mean that privacy is not a priority anymore. However, the servers of this type do not care about how you expect to spend your time there; they worry only about whether you noticed that they were so friendly to you or not. But does the excess in showing your positive attitude cause the same position in return? I think that the answer is obvious, but it seems that the others do not. For example, Jacob and Gueguen claim that “close distance is an important factor facilitating compliance,” meaning that the closer the waiter stands, the kinder the visitor is, and the larger amount of money he gives to the waiter (2).

It sounds like these people have never heard about introverts, who feel embarrassed when somebody forces them to communicate. And if such behavior can be understood in the case of the sales advisors, who try to advertise the product, it looks completely weird in the case of the waiters, who try to advertise themselves. What is more, this kind of server embraces extremely fast cleaners as well. Their distinctive feature is that they take any dishes or pieces of trash away from the table as soon as you put something there so that the client begins to think that somebody is constantly watching him. In my opinion, the waiters should at least ask before doing anything that may be considered undesirable and make the client feel uncomfortable.

On the other hand, showing absolute disregard cannot influence the waiter’s tip positively. Nobody likes to have a talk with a rude person, even for their own sake, let alone to do a favor to this person by means of giving money. Several basic rules have to be strictly followed regardless of the mood of the waiter or the client. As an illustration, Rashwan describes how the first offer should be made:

Head waiter/waiter must ensure that menus are in excellent condition (depending on location), stands on the right-hand side of the guest, with the menu opened on the first page and holding it by the top, should present to the ladies first while maintaining eye contact. (10)

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There are a number of books about such greeting etiquette, and if the waiter is not capable of recreating at least the basic ones in practice, he hardly deserves any tip. It is the waiter’s main task to represent the restaurant and do his best to maintain its image, and the overall impression about the institution will be spoiled otherwise. Then it becomes a question not of my principle to deprive him of this additional money but of a simple comparison of how we both contributed to the overall atmosphere. This type of waiter is not as common as the first one since workers of any occupations primarily care about the wage they receive. However, I strongly believe that everything should be based on equality and honesty and do not see any sense in paying those who do not even match the requirements.

Last but not least, the servers who make unambiguous implications about paying money to them are on the way to losing all of their chances as well. As far as I am concerned, giving a tip is a voluntary action, and almost everybody is aware of the possibility of doing this. Hence, any reminders will be rather redundant than relevant, and show to the customer that the waiter is not self-confident and worries about salary a lot – at least much more than about providing really good service.

The beginners usually belong to this kind of waiters, and in some cases, their patience comes along with the experience they acquire. Then I could say that I would pay such a waiter who had understood and corrected his mistakes, but these money exactors are rather exceptions from the rules. The advice for them would be to remember that all the people sitting in the restaurant earn money, as well as the waiters, do, and it is okay to have a desire to save it. In his article on the Wise Geeks, Black expressed this idea in the following way:

Though the standard is to tip 15% of the total bill for good service at lunch and 20% of the total bill for good service at dinner, these are highly subjective. In other words, your tip should depend on what you think is appropriate, not what the social standards may be.

All things considered, I am convinced that every waiter has to be tolerant and seek the golden mean. Too impolite or even excessively polite behaviors are not suitable for the person who works with people with different characters. The approaches that the waiter chooses to communicate with the clients should be individual but correspond to the general manners of etiquette. All other personal thoughts about the servers’ work are not relevant when considering their direct duties, but if even the letter could not be satisfied, I would never give a tip to such waiters.

Works Cited

Jacob, Celine and Nicolas Gueguen. “The Effect of Physical Distance Between Patrons and Servers on Tipping” Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research. 34.2 (2010). Sage Publications. Web.

Lynn, Michael and Michael C. Sturman. “Tipping and Service Quality: A Within-Subjects Analysis” Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research. (2010): 269-275. School of Hotel Administration Collection. Web.

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Rashwan, Ehab. The Brilliant Basics to Exceptional Restaurant Service. 2009. Free E-books. Web.

Wise Geek 2015, “When Should You Not Tip Your Waiter?” Wise Geek. Web.

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