Empower Your Weakest Server

You have a weak server on the floor. You know this just because that person seems to be holding back a bit. They appear to be hesitant in their manner and not going for it. Maybe scared of making a mistake. It could be this person is still not sure if this is the right career move for them.

Here is what you do. Give that person a really busy section and keep an eye on them. Don’t give them an easy section because that will not build up their confidence. What that person needs is a shot in the arm. Empower your weakest link. Be there if they need you but watch from a distance. Of course don’t let service suffer. Help if it is needed.

A good bartender or waiter never stayed in the business very long if they did not get that busy section early on. A cook never stayed on very long if all they ever did was peel potatoes. They had to have a busy night on the line. Everyone worth their salt got slammed in their section early on and that is how you get better. You learn to survive the night and make some money and get better each time thereafter.

So if you are in charge of training or running a team get those newly hired people in the thick of it as quick as possible. Especially this time of year when you get a lot of people in the festive spirit.

Get that new employee when their enthusiasm is the highest and give them more responsiblity quickly. People naturally want to do a good job and feel like they are contributing.

Just do it soon before they leave to go somewhere else.



  1. One place I worked made sure that everyone's first night on the floor alone was their busiest night of the week. There was always a wait, so it was sink or swim. It was a great way to weed out the people who really didn't want to be there. Management was always on hand to help so it wasn't overwhelming if you knew what you were doing. I totally agree that this is a great way to start someone off, if there is help on hand.

  2. I agree! My favorite time to bartend is when it is completely crowded and you have to work your ass off to serve everyone. It's exhilarating, and the sole reason I kept bartending where I was for so long.

  3. LW…that is the best way to do it. Then we can see what stuff the server has.It is all about working and being organized.

  4. BB…nothing worse than standing around and waiting to do your stuff. Right on.

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