The Insane Waiter

Running wild on customers, chefs, owners and managers since 1997. I bring to you, The Insane Waiter. What do bring to your table? A crisp bottle of San Pellegrino ? Perhaps a lovely seared Sashimi Tuna? Start off with a wonderful bottle from Tuscany perhaps? Why I'll be more than happy to bring you your White Zinfandel and Chicken Caesar. No you can't order the mac and cheese off the kids menu and sorry no, we don't serve cheese sticks....

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Napoleon, Not so Dynamite

So that is one of the many colorful names we have dubbed the new General Manager.

Day after day of him quoting, "Well that's how we did it at my old place," is having a very telling effect on the staff.

Even the resident "management can do no wrong" server is having problems defending his actions.

Here's a bit of an expansion of the last post. Since then at a shift meeting the other day he went over the following.

"You're responable for covering your shifts, blah, blah, blah."

"What if we call everyone on the list and there is no one who can pick it up?" A bold server said.

"Well you need to be here then, your shift has to be covered," said the GM.

He then went on this diatribe, "Our customers expect excellent service, if the shift isn't covered they might not receive it due to us being under-staffed. If the kitchen is short a guy he needs his shift covered too, it the food doesn't come up in a timely manner then the guest might not come back. Guess what happens then, they'll tell ten of their friends and they won't come in either, and then you won't make as much money will you? You do want to make money, right?"

Ah, so he tries to legitimize us coming in while ill by hearkening to our inner greed.

His cause and effect is so out of wack he must read "Minute Manager" every day while sitting on his porcelain throne.

Then the GM came up with this brilliant rational, "Now I realize this is the service industry. I know that after your shifts you all go out to the bar and drink it up. Then on your day off you all go out and party. So pretty much we assume that if you call in you are just hung-over or sick from drinking so it isn't legitimate."

So speaks up I, "I feel that is an unfair assumption, who are you to assume that's the reason we call in sick?"

I only got a dirty look.

Of course this is all coming from the man that disappeared for four hours on a Friday night shift because he had too much to drink before his shift.

He's just another one of those managers who tries to do as little as possible as far as actual on the floor work.

Of course there are some employees that abuse the system, they are the ones managers favor and they can get away with it. If they call in they are given no hassle, but if management doesn't like you, how dare you get sick!

How dare you put out our precious customer.

How dare you make us do our jobs and go the extra mile.

How dare you think that a sick kid, the flu, vomiting, what have you effect the ticket time of some yuppie.

How dare them.

I came here to escape this sort of shoddy management.

So my application is in to the other place and I have an interview next week.

I wonder what kind of service the customers get when all of the professional waitstaff get other jobs and are replaced with the type of idiots they've been hiring.

They say we're expendable, but I've seen what happens to restaurants that act like this toward their staff.

They fall from grace.


At 6:57 PM , Blogger caramaena said...

Good grief. Does he really think that the customer would rather be served by someone who is obviously ill (and possibly contagious) rather than have to wait a little bit longer because you're short handed?

If I ate in a place where they made ill workers serve you I would NEVER come back (who knows what other hygiene rules they're throwing out the window). If I had to wait a little longer and it was explained that this was due to illness then I wouldn't have a problem.

Surely restaurant-goers in the US aren't as arrogant and demanding as the manager is describing, are they?

Good luck with the interview. I don't know if this would be burning your bridges, but it would be good to let the old owners know exactly why you left when you do get the other job (heh, positive thinking there).

At 7:15 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i worked at a restaurant that ALWAYS designated an on call person so that if anyone called in sick, the on-call had to come in. it sucked to BE the on-call, but if you had an emergency, you were covered. Of course if you were the SECOND person to call in sick, then it was YOUR problem...

but it was slightly better than the asshattery of your present place.

At 12:48 AM , Anonymous ann said...

I'm moving to Chicago in a few weeks and I'll be waiting tables--I sure as hell hope I don't end up at the restaurant you speak of (though I wouldn't put up with managers like that for very long). I currently work in a place with phenomenally good management and I know I'll never be so lucky again. Sigh...and by the way, I thought most restauarant employee manuals stated that you couldn't work if you were contagious. I've actually seen co-workers sent home because they still sounded a little too sniffly, and they didn't want to gross out the customers.

At 7:46 AM , Blogger Mommy de Gallo said...

I see an anonymous call to the Health Department from your restaurant in the future. What would be even more awesome is if several employees were sick at the time. Not that I'm wishing colds on anyone.

At 11:06 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you still in DSM? I sure wish I knew what place you worked at. I'd never go there again. I don't want some sick person breathing on my food making me sick. ugh...

At 12:38 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that's the ASS Buster I know. Your the Man.Hang in there Thom is on the way. Hows my hero D R holding up ? Rumor has it that J.P. will be your next KM....

At 3:53 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will tell you what will happen, they will hire new servers that accept their policy and they will do a fine job and the world will keep turning.

At 12:06 AM , Blogger Hoodlum said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 9:31 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually I was "let go" cos I didn't fit in with a new "fine dining" place here in Srq, Fla recently almost 3 months ago...the place opened with 18 people from one restaurant and 5-6 from another and I was from neither...loved the place for 3 months and then the third gm really didn't like me and said I didn't fit in and let me go...saw the owner one day in the market she couldn't believe I left...saw the chef another day same market and he said I got a bad more happier than I ever was now in a small Russian Fine Dining establishment and making the same money sometimes change is best...good luck...I have waited on tables here since '84 believe me I have been let go more than I like to remember but hindsight is wonderful cos I was glad with each turn...good luck

At 6:05 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

In every waitstaff job I have had, being responsible for covering your shift is a given. Really, it balances out in the end,if you are short on rent, you pick up a shift, if you have an exam or you are hungover/sick, you try and get your shift covered-if you can't, too bad.
ie: How many 9-5er's can give their shifts away because they have friends in town?
That said, I see the irony in the fact that many places require a doctor's note (or something to that effect) to "call in sick" when they don't provide any health insurance.
Perhaps the answer lies somewhere between covering your own shifts, and the establishment offering an alternative to getting your co-workers and customers sick. Call it a compromise.

At 10:51 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the type of manager that one day is found with a bullet through his head.

At 4:45 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoy this blog, I enjoy reading your crazy, bitter antics. I came across something everyone in your industry should read:

At 8:30 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

That Craiglist article is the best argument against tipping that I've seen in a while.

At 9:52 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, I agree for sure


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