A friend’s post got me on the subject, and I have soooo many friends and loved ones that have a dog in this hunt I’m just going to say it.
Stiffing or shorting tipped personnel is like asking for service and then refusing to pay for it. From a server’s point of view…you just stole from them.
The service industry minimum wage for tipped personnel is 2.13 an hour.
$2.13 PER HOUR!
The national standard % for tips right now is 18%. Not 5% for pizza guys and 15% for servers…it’s 18%. As a professional courtesy, service personnel usually tip each other much more, usually at least 20-25% or even more. This courtesy in many cases is the only reason some service professionals can claim a reasonable income.
…because everyone else thinks someone else will take care of them.
So tip your service.
Most restaurants never allow overtime so these servers make less than $90 a week unless they get a tip from you. Not tipping under the premise that they are already making enough is a shit poor excuse and is one of the biggest reasons turnover in the restaurant industries is crap. So now when you short or stiff your server you’re hurting the restaurant too.
I’ll take it a step further. In most restaurants and hotels (and even pizza delivery), significant portions of the tips go to personnel other than your server. usually 1-5% of a servers sales will go to wine/bar/buss/etc. Now if you stiff or short the service, you’re actually costing the server money.
Next step. Large group gratuities. Next time you get “grat’ed” don’t get your feathers in a ruffle. The reason restaurants do the is because if your party spends hundreds/thousands of dollars on the check and your split-check requesting idiocy allowed half the party to stiff on their tabs, it is very likely that the server may not claim to have made enough to cover the difference in minimum wage. This will cause problems for the restaurant because the restaurant is required to cover the difference if the server hasn’t shown to have made enough to clear minimum wage. They don’t care that the server didn’t make what they wanted to, they only care about making sure they don’t have wage insurance claims filed because the IRS absolutely loves seeing those records…because the IRS considers it a sure sign that “someone” is misreporting their income.
Now before you decide to say that not all hospitality concepts pay minimum. I’ll go ahead and say this, I’ve worked for about 10 different major restaurant groups in almost every capacity. Of those, only one paid above minimum wage, but then only for experienced servers. Now the real statistic…of the hundreds of concepts out there, only about 3-5% provide compensation past minimum wage…EVER. Annual salary increases don’t happen for tipped personnel.
If you base your tip on the quality of the food, you’re effectively blaming your paper boy for the crappy articles in your newspaper. While some concepts allow the servers a modicum of control over the food that comes out to their tables, most do not. Your best bet is just to make sure the server repeats your order back to you, because thats all the control they actually have on your food as well. The same occurs for drink service as well.
So when you decide it’s okay to not tip, here’s what your really doing:
*Insuring the servers income is sub standard and even sub minimum
*Increasing turnover in a business
*Costing the restaurant mucho $$ because of turnover for the job
*You will likely always get “grat’ed” on large groups
*Damaging the restaurant industry as they will just raise the price of their food to cover the profit margin…or worse, employ inexperience and/or unqualified people to server you to replace the ones that got fed up when you stiff or shorted them.
*You’ve probably punished a server for a problem they didn’t have much control over.
This all said, this little rant is mainly just to give people an idea of why all the craptastic ideas about why they shouldn’t tip properly is slowly eroding a good industry, because the restaurants are making more money from it and the level of service and professionalism coming from once-great hospitality concepts is slowly getting destroyed.
So…if you have a question about this subject please fire away, I love educating people on this stuff.
Unfortunately, someone that trolls restaurant service/hospitality industry articles and regurgitates content via comments decided to post about 7 pages of comments last night and after a significant amount of research (including calling Yahoo and other Website owners) I found that this person has been trolling forums and regurgitating the same article content for quite some time and actually using indexed comments as a method of getting self promotion on their own written articles as well.
After finding that this person had been equally as aggressive on multiple other service-based forums and blogs (and in most cases banned), I have removed their material and all links to my website. In addition, because these comments are in many ways identical to the comments posted on other venues, I’m going to treat them as a comment spammer. In a future article I will be sure to cite the submitted content as prime examples of
deplorably ill-thought and incredibly jaded ‘opportunistic’ netiquette and hopefully this will help said person to understand that their point of view, while certainly relevant, was presented in such poor taste that they could only be regarded as a troll looking for a fight rather than a contributor to an intelligent discussion.
I would like to note that I do NOT subscribe to censoring comments lightly, but once I saw that the same content had been posted multiple times in other websites, that was a crossed line. If you have something to say, say it but don’t post a ton of pages of comments/content used in other sites and expect to retain any shred of credibility with me.