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theaftercath theaftercath wrote in customers_suck
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Good luck at work tomorrow...
I bartend at TGIF. Done it for 6 years now, love it mostly.

Tonight a girl I recognized as a TGIF employee from another store came in with some friends. I remembered her because the last time she was in she acted like she'd never been in a restaurant before, let alone worked in one. She and her friends were the same tonight.

She clearly didn't know the menu well. I joked with my manager in the kitchen about how she must be a hostess*, since she asked me an extremely stupid-for-an-employee question ("Do you guys have x-like-dish?" Uh...yes? The TGIF-X-Dish?). She also clearly didn't know polite customer behavior very well either, as she decided the way to get my attention to order appetizers (after I'd been standing idly behind the bar in front of her group for a few minutes while they ignored my several attempts to see if they knew what they wanted) was to snap her fingers and shout "Excuse me!" at me while I was taking a different set of customers' orders.

*because hosts don't necessarily have to know the menu as well as servers or bartenders. Not because hosts are unintelligent.
They ate, they drank, they wanted separate checks. She wanted me to split an item in half between two people, which I somewhat baffled...ly reminded her we can't do if there's a discount on it, like her employee discount. She also demanded to know why I charged her for chips and salsa. When I asked what she meant, she did order chips and salsa, right? she said she expected to get the free promotional chips we give out to TGIF Member Card holders. I responded with "The loyalty program chips? That's for loyalty program people." She snapped that they let employees eat the promo chips at HER restaurant. I shrugged and told her I was sorry. Her friends paid and tipped well. She left me a 10% tip on her final bill, which was about 5% of what the bill would have been without her employee discount.

I pulled my manager aside to ask if, while she was still in the restaurant, we should remind her that you're required to leave a 20% tip off the original, pre-discount bill when you use your employee comp card. He was like "heck yes, we should!" and went to go talk to her. At this point the group had gathered up their things and were on their way out the door. Manager caught them in the foyer and said in a conversational tone "Hey Employee! Can you come back inside for a moment? I have a quick question for you." She told him they were leaving, what did he want? He tried again, "Just come back inside, it'll take two seconds" but she insisted he ask whatever he needed to ask right there and told her friends to hold up.

So manager, as tactfully as he could, asked her if she knew about tipping policy with the employee comp card. She said no, so he reminded her it's 20% off the original bill total. She wanted to know why he was asking her this, so he reminded her she left about a 5% tip, and that he was just wanting to check to see what was up--that she maybe had forgotten the policy. She just said "Oh. I didn't know. Sorry?" and then left.

Manager didn't appreciate her attitude, so he asked me if I remembered her name and what location she was from, and then set off to call her location to give her managers a heads-up that she might need a refresher course on how to behave while representing the company. While he was chatting with the manager on duty at OtherLocation (who apologized on the girl's behalf, which was unnecessary, but nice) the other line rang. Manager put otherManager on hold, and who should be on the other line but the girl?

As soon as she ascertained it was Manager on the phone she lit into him. "How DARE you embarrass me in front of my friends like that?! I can't believe you chased me out of the restaurant to demand a higher tip! How unprofessional blah blah blah" He apologized if she felt embarrassed, but reminded her he had tried to get her to have a private conversation twice. She then told him she tipped so poorly because I gave them horrible service, that I hadn't even bothered to recommend any drinks or appetizers (uh, you work here. Most other employees would laugh me out of town if I tried to give them the corporate spiel), that I'd been a b*tch about not giving her free chips, and that she's the best server at her store and has been with this company for over a year and knows policies inside and out. Manager just calmly told her that if she'd had an issue at the time, she should have said so instead of saying she didn't know about the tipping policy. She yelled she was going to call her general manager and report him, which Manager replied was fine. He wasn't going to continue this conversation with her, but if her superiors felt the need to follow up, they could give us a ring.

So he hung up, and promptly switched back to the line her manager was holding on, and was like "...funny story..."

TL;DR--server from a different location goes from annoying to off-the-rails. I suspect she'll be having an uncomfortable chat with her general manager before her next shift. I only feel a little bad.

canadian_kazz

2013-02-06 10:27 am (UTC) (Link)

Oh, to be a fly on the wall when her GM gives her that little chat.

alfiechat

2013-02-06 10:37 am (UTC) (Link)

yeah. I hope she got raked over the coals. I am sorry, but if you are an employee of a chain, I wouldn't act like that in different locations. I am glad your manager backed you up.

(no subject) - hungry_worm, 2013-02-06 05:04 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-06 10:26 pm (UTC)(Expand)

pandaeatworld

2013-02-06 11:22 am (UTC) (Link)

C'mon lady, don't shit where you eat. And work. Literally.

ellex42

2013-02-06 01:23 pm (UTC) (Link)

MTE.

(no subject) - noodledays, 2013-02-06 04:51 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - nightshade1972, 2013-02-06 04:51 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-06 10:23 pm (UTC)(Expand)

cassandraterra

2013-02-06 11:33 am (UTC) (Link)

Wow. She must really hate her job to go to all that trouble to get fired. Or she is just plain dumb. She acts like a moron and expect to be vindicated? I would love to hear the end of this.

girlredefined

2013-02-06 12:18 pm (UTC) (Link)

Right?! OP, if you hear any kind of follow up please update us!

(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-06 07:20 pm (UTC)(Expand)

mi_iseul

2013-02-06 11:43 am (UTC) (Link)

Someone will be VERY lucky to have a shift to go back to. I can't see any of this going over well with her GM and it makes me wonder what lies she's going to try and tell to get out of it. -.-

shadwing

2013-02-06 01:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Especially since they have the records of what she ordered, and how much she tipped.

And since her friends behaved and tipped well, if THEY lit into her about leaving a crappy tip especially since she's a TGIF employee as well.

(no subject) - mi_iseul, 2013-02-06 03:49 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - shadwing, 2013-02-06 04:09 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - fallconsmate, 2013-02-06 05:44 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-06 10:22 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - brigittefires, 2013-02-11 03:00 am (UTC)(Expand)

callmetothejedi

2013-02-06 12:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

She'll be very lucky if she has a job after this. I would also like to be a fly on the wall during her "chat" with her manager/GM.

blot

2013-02-06 12:32 pm (UTC) (Link)

Uh wow. Even if she wasn't an employee this would have been atrocious! As an employee, just. Wow.

Buy the way, I haven't stopped in my local TGIF lately because I feel weird walking in to ask about an item with out buying anything, but do you know if they still have that Jack Danial's chicken appetizer? It used to be my favorite.

spindly_geek

2013-02-06 03:36 pm (UTC) (Link)

It's still on the 'online' menu...


Sesame Jack™ Chicken Strips

Tender, panko-coated chicken breast strips tossed in a Jack Daniel’s® glaze, then topped with toasted sesame seeds.

(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-06 07:06 pm (UTC)(Expand)

nynaeve_sedai

2013-02-06 04:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

Yet another example of someone who is entirely not self-aware. I have a Sherlock (BBC) moment when I hear these stories. "Dear God, what is it like in your funny little brains? It must be so boring!"

nightshade1972

2013-02-06 04:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

You really should've had a Benedict Cumberbatch icon for that one :-)

(no subject) - nynaeve_sedai, 2013-02-06 06:17 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - bugeyedmonster, 2013-02-10 11:49 pm (UTC)(Expand)

surrey_sucks

2013-02-06 05:36 pm (UTC) (Link)

You should go into her location...

theaftercath

2013-02-06 10:20 pm (UTC) (Link)

Ha.

I'd have all these big dreams of snapping to get her attention and ignoring her when she does come by etc... but in reality I'd just be overly polite, perhaps hoping to model how one should act, and she probably wouldn't take the hint.

She works at the oldest location in the area, with a lot of loyal regulars, and a pretty high volume of customers. The hosts, servers, and bartenders there tend to be top-notch. I was frankly surprised when she told me her location.

(no subject) - verminiusrex, 2013-02-07 07:38 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - theaftercath, 2013-02-07 07:53 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - kingshearte, 2013-02-10 02:15 pm (UTC)(Expand)

xchanceofrainx

2013-02-06 06:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

I think that tipping policy for employees is nice. I've worked at many restaurants and I can't tell you how many times someone who worked in OUR restaurant or another location would either stiff their server or leave next to nothing ("oh, you know how it is when you've had a bad couple of nights, with gas and all!" Drove me crazy when it happened to me or I'd hear about it.

theaftercath

2013-02-06 10:17 pm (UTC) (Link)

I'm fortunate enough to have never had a coworker (or even industry person at large) try that excuse on me. Or should I say my coworkers are fortunate they've never tried that excuse on me. They're not a "real" guest--I'd have no qualms telling them where to shove it.

For me it's usually the opposite. We'll have a dead night at work, the servers will make, like, $15 total and then just be like "fuck it" and spend their earnings on a couple drinks because at least they'll get some pleasure out of the day. Then they try to tip me $5 on their $10 check and I have to fight them about over-tipping me when I know they made squat.

fastdoll

2013-02-06 09:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

Oh my gosh, the finger snapping. I don't even call my dog like that, why would you call your server that way? It's so rude!

I really dislike when people come into my restaurant and off-handedly mention that they're a server and then are terrible customers. Like, YOU KNOW BETTER. But I can't even imagine how endlessly frustrating it is for someone who works at the same chain as you to do that.

theaftercath

2013-02-06 10:13 pm (UTC) (Link)

Pretty much anyone who makes a point to tell you right up front that they're in the industry (or worse, used to be in the industry) is going to be a pain in the ass. These are the people with entitlement complexes.

I don't mind when people let me know if they're industry with cause. Like "I used to work for TGIF years ago! Do they still ___?" or "Oh honey, it's okay the kitchen is backed up. I'm a server too, I know how it goes." Those are the good ones.

(no subject) - shygirlswin, 2013-02-08 02:11 am (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - lost_garnet, 2013-02-10 09:51 am (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - robertr4836, 2013-02-12 02:40 pm (UTC)(Expand)
(no subject) - kingshearte, 2013-02-10 02:18 pm (UTC)(Expand)

somniumdraconae

2013-02-07 02:05 am (UTC) (Link)

Is that a legit TGIF employee policy? I suddenly love that restaurant and must go eat there... :)

I lasted a solid month in waitressing (Red Lobster) before I firmly said, FUCK THIS SHIT, and got the hell out of there. I might have tried to stick it out longer if I wasn't also moving unexpectedly, but I burned out pretty fast and was relieved to have an excuse, honestly.

But what I learned working that side of the table really influenced my etiquette and tipping practices when dining out. Fer realz.

aurra_sing

2013-02-07 03:01 am (UTC) (Link)

It's an outback policy as well :)

jadehunter

2013-02-07 05:06 am (UTC) (Link)

LMAO anyone who brags that they are the best at their job is usually the person who is least likely to get that title for real.

bloodyheartless

2013-02-07 05:21 pm (UTC) (Link)

I had a situation like that, but it wasn't in a restaurant setting. I worked at a sporting goods store, and you aren't allowed to use your employee discount on top of other discounts like general store sales or clearanced merchandise. Well, this guy came in from our mall location and proceeded to argue, WITH MY MANAGER, that yes, in fact you CAN use your employee discount on top of other discounts and my manager should really brush up on her company policy knowledge if she thought differently. He loudly announced that he worked at suchandsuch location and they do it there all the time! My manager called his manager right after he left. Apparently he's just as bad an employee as he was a customer, as his manager said he wouldn't be working there much longer.

corridor7f

2013-02-07 08:32 pm (UTC) (Link)

When I worked retail, there were fellow employees from other stores who would act like this - shallow twits who thought THEIR location was in a better neighbourhood therefore was better than ours. They'd also try to tell you how to do your job, which.. *boogles* I don't even.

I always enjoyed bringing them down a peg, since I knew every job in the store pretty much while they usually ended up just being a fitting room attendant or only a cashier.

build_the_moon

2013-02-08 03:02 am (UTC) (Link)

I really want to see an update on this if you hear anything back from the other store. THIS WOMAN IS NUTS. And entertaining.

surrey_sucks

2013-02-11 10:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

Same.

rainbow_goddess

2013-02-08 04:34 am (UTC) (Link)

About five years ago I took a class in customer service as part of a college program I was in. The teacher said that if you ever shop in/eat in/visit your workplace in your off hours, you should be on your best behaviour and not make extra work for your co-workers who are on duty.

One time I went to my favourite sandwich shop for lunch and recognized a couple of my fellow customers as employees of the shop. They were behaving terribly, preventing the poor boy behind the counter from doing his job by constantly calling to him, demanding things, complaining about their sandwiches and at the same time teasing and trying to flirt with him. (WTF?) It took me ages to get my sandwich. I wound up writing a letter to head office because I was so pissed off.

marlinchen

2013-02-10 05:41 pm (UTC) (Link)

I just have a question - I always tip 15 - 20% as a rule, even if it's bad (unless it's super excellent), but I'm not sure why employees are required to tip a certain amount at your place. Will they get fired if they don't? And why would you guys talk to her manager about tipping when it's her business and her decision to be a jerk and not to? You can't really force people to tip higher; if they're assholes, they're assholes. =P

theaftercath

2013-02-10 11:57 pm (UTC) (Link)

It's part of your agreement that you sign when you get your comp card. You get the benefit of a certain % off (I get 50% since I've been there over 3 years) and in return you compensate your server with a 20% tip off what your bill should have been. It sets a standard of behavior. If your server was awful then you talk to a manager about it. They'd appreciate an insider's opinion, and would probably give you the go ahead to tip at your discretion.

While you can get fired for any reason in an at-will state, it's not really a fireable offense with my company. It wouldn't have even been a "calling her manager" offense if she hadn't behaved the way she did. If she just left with no to-do, we would have just remembered to remind her about the rule the next time she was in.