Restaurant Staffing: 3 Ways To Improve Customer Service In Your Restaurant This Month

You’re the only one who knows what “great” customer service looks like in your restaurant.

It’s hard to keep up with customer service when you’re the only one who knows what it should look like. And on days that you’re not there, it’s even worse – all of your customers’ bad experiences get amplified on review sites.

Bad reviews can ruin your reputation, making it difficult to attract new customers. Staffing is expensive and it’s hard to find people who are qualified and passionate about customer service.
Today’s video is going to help you out.

When I ask restaurant owners, managers, and staff what good customer service is to them, I hear things like it’s hard to explain….when pressed harder, they tell me things like, saying yes to the guest, being attentive to their needs, being polite, courteous and friendly.

Each one of those contributes to customer service, but they’re abstract. Worse, they’re almost impossible to define or train your team how to do — and that’s why your restaurant is falling down when you’re not there.

Re-Imagine Customer Service

Customer service needs to be something you can train on. It needs to be learnable skill like properly stocking a station, using a knife properly, or flipping an over-easy egg. Great customer service starts with a great mindset and great culture, but then what.

All of this starts with you. You need to be clear about what your standards are and what kind of experience you want your customers to have. Only then can you train your people HOW to uphold those standards.

So take a step back and really think about the customer service experience you want to create in your restaurant.

How Do You Want Your Staff To Feel

Creating an amazing place to work is the first step in ensuring people will actually WANT to work for you. When you can attract awesome people with the right mindset, you’re well on your way to offering the best customer service.

Let’s say you want your staff to be really engaging and fun when they’re interacting with your guests. Find ways to ensure that your restaurant is a fun and engaging place to work at. If your servers are stressed out the minute they walk in the door, it’s going to be very hard for them to flip a switch and be the kind of server you need them to be.

Define what “good” customer service looks like

Since every person has a different interpretation of what great service might look like, the only way to ensure that your team is executing YOUR vision is to tell them exactly what that vision looks like.

If part of great customer service includes the way they answer the phone, create a training document, and then train them on EXACTLY what to say and how to say it. If great customer service is offering a craft cocktail, create the training. If great customer service is being able to handle a guest complaint, train your team how to handle customer complaints.

Brainstorm every part of great customer service. Don’t leave anything off the list because it’s “common sense”. If you stop making assumptions and focus on training your team on exactly what to do and say, you’ll quickly develop the amazing customer service that you want to be known for.

You can’t complain about your teams lacking abilities in customer service, if you have NOT defined and trained them HOW to create the customer service you desire.

Your Next Step

Many people get stuck in the how. The first thing I would do is create a list of 10-20 things that your team is not doing, that you want them to be doing, that together will create great customer service in your restaurant.

Then create training documents and train them.

If you want some examples of these exact training steps and what a properly formatted training document looks like, please sign up for access to The Restaurant Owners Ultimate Toolkit available on this page.


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