8 Things Restaurants Should Do Better

Honor reservations. Don’t overbook and don’t make diners wait more than 15 or 20 minutes without offering them something that shows you’re sorry they were inconvenienced.

 Be willing to seat incomplete parties if your hunch is the group will be whole within 10 minutes or so.

 Bring up the lights. Some restaurants are so dark, diners are unable to read the menu or worse, see the food.

 Keep menu introductions brief. No one wants to be held hostage for 10 minutes while a waiter recites a mission statement.

 Learn to “read” guests. Some people love to know their waiter’s name or backstories and others prefer to focus on their companions. It’s up to the servers to know the difference.

 Do not ask diners for accolades, as in, “Is everything delicious?”

 Banish from your delivery the string of words “Are you finished working on that?” or similar phrases.  “May I take your plate?” Hits the ear much better.

 Treat restrooms as if your parents are coming over. Make sure they’re spotless.

 Keep your website accurate and up-to-date. If it’s fall and you’re promoting spring specialties like shad roe or rhubarb mousse, readers will be inclined to search elsewhere for a meal.

 Remember that little things are big things to a lot of diners. When you return change, make certain it’s accurate. Diners notice when you don’t – and tend to leave lesser tips in response.

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