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Attention Bartenders! The Little Things You Say Make All The Difference

Aug 18, 2007
As a bartender, the little things you say to your customers can make all the difference between running a lively crowded bar full of repeat, high spending customers and a bar that is empty and leaves a negative impression in people's minds.

Let's look at an easy way to keep the mood around your bar positive while remaining confident and in a position of power. The first thing to do is smile most of or all of the time.

If you look genuinely happy it will be contagious and create a positive mood in your bar. Whatever you do, do not be a "fake" happy. It has to be real, otherwise people see right through your generic smile.

You can also create a positive mood to settle impatient or restless customers by choosing your words carefully when speaking to them. Let's say you've kept a customer waiting longer than necessary for a drink.

What most aware/polite bartenders would say when approaching that customer to take their order is.... "Sorry to keep you waiting..." While that is definitely better than not acknowledging their wait time at all, there's still a much better way to go about this.

"Sorry" comes from a place of weakness, thus, it can also further ignite an impatient customer's negative feelings (or rage) towards you. It also implies you are in the "wrong," but you've in fact done nothing wrong.

Mentioning the word "waiting" also focuses on the fact that the customer had to wait! The entire statement comes from a place of weakness and has a negative focus... so much for being polite.

The funny thing is... almost everyone out there says that sort of thing. While the intention of that statement is harmless... it has unfavorable effects subconsciously. Want proof? Say it to an impatient customer and watch their reaction.

Want to hear a much better way of saying that and get a much more positive response out of the customer? A much better statement, which comes from a place of strength, rather than weakness would be to say "Thank you for your patience."

This statement fully acknowledges the customer with a "Thank you" and the word "patience" is focusing on something positive... their patience! When you say this, the customer's subconscious says "I'm patient" and it will immediately ease their tension from being impatient.

Using these psychological tactics will work wonders with your customers, while also increasing your tips. It's minor details like this that make a good bartender great. These are the traits of a truly conscious bartender.

Try it your next shift and watch your tips explode because of the all-pervasive positive feelings around your bar.
About the Author
Jeremy Sherk, is an expert, world-class bartender, who has helped thousands of bartenders create killer resumes land their dream job, and explode their level of cash tips. Get your hands on his free e-course at www.SixFigureBartender.com
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