October 15, 2017 glimpse_team

Stay Back! – Keeping Servers and Managers Away from the Bar and Letting the Bartender Work

Understanding that while you want to get drinks moving quickly, too many people will hinder the efficacy of the bartender and prevent any accurate measurement of performance if they are hindered or getting help. Part of building a successful team is allowing them to operate in their systems and testing their abilities, and any prevention of this will create long-term problems for teams.

“You shall not pass!”

you shall not pass

While these words are famous in the Lord of the Rings community, this phrase should also be utilized in the hospitality industry to give bartenders the space they need. Across many clients, we have seen an abundance of servers and managers going behind the bar to grab or make drinks for their tables. While this may get the drinks out faster, it can create confusion with the bartender and lead to duplicate drink orders or frustration that can be avoided. Further, it hinders management’s ability to measure the bartender’s productivity and performance regarding SOP adherence.

Let’s take this apart.

Focus on low angle close up glass locating near beer tap in modern pub

Employees must be deployed to their stations and expected to be able to operate with minimal supervision, across any industry. We have seen in certain locations, bartenders will be competing for space and supplies because a server couldn’t wait for a drink or the bartender has several drinks to make. While the server does get the drink out to their customer, this doesn’t help solve the problem of why the drink took so long to make or whether the bartender was actually within the mandated SOP. In situations like these, management should step in and let the bartenders work and be able to observe their performance. It’s not always easy to stand back, but sometimes it’s necessary to be able to best help your team grow.

Yes, there will be growing pains during this process and it is essential you communicate with the team about this new procedure. But if bartenders are constantly getting help or obstacles, you will not be able to see your team deliver the service you want and determine the health of the organization.