Top 3 Qualities To Look For When Hiring A Bartender

Nothing is worse than going out to a party just to be disappointed by the service. Regardless if the event was already going well or not, this bad impression is enough to ruin anyone’s night. This is why customer service should be number one in any company mission statement.

According to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs, “A dissatisfied customer will tell 9-15 people about it. And approximately 13% of your dissatisfied customers will tell more than 20 people about their problem.”

That’s a lot of unhappy clients. Whether you work in the bar or food service industry, both positions require a high attention to detail. To avoid bad company reviews, start with your staff.  This seems the most apparent, but surprisingly it’s not always that obvious. Most companies are so inclined to deal with the actual issue at hand, rather than fixing the underlying problem to the issue. In most cases, the underlying problem is how your staff directly deal with customers, not necessarily how satisfying your products are.

In order to avoid delivering poor customer service, you must pick your staff wisely. Here are some guidelines to follow next time you hire a bartender.

1. Focus On Personality

This is the time you get to know the person who may potentially be representing your company. If their personality doesn’t suit what you stand for, than this is an automatic sign that it’s not going to work. Also try to look for someone who is friendly, positive and professional. Friendliness does not come easy for everyone, so gravitate towards the candidates that seem the most natural at it.

This goes hand-in-hand with professionalism. You want someone who not only looks professional, but also acts it- especially in tense situations. A firm handshake, solid stare and good mannerisms often indicate that this person is ready for business. You also want an employee that knows how to stay positive. A great way to get your candidates to display these skills is to ask scenario-related questions. The more specific your questions, the more specific the response will be. This will allow you to get a pretty good idea of the personality you are dealing with.

2. Look for Patience

Patience is a virtue – one that every bartender and server should have. This should be a crucial quality to look for when conducting your interviews. Analyze how they engage with you, others, and their new surroundings. For example, see how often they look at the clock. This will allow you to see how polite and attentive they are to the task at hand. If your candidate is already looking at the clock halfway through the interview, imagine how often they will be looking at it when they’re on shift.

Being patient often means having good listening skills. In the serving world, you serve your guests exactly how they want. This is why being attentive and responsive is a mandatory quality in servers and bartenders. It is important to execute exactly what your guests asked for, and in a timely fashion. A great way to test this is to ask simple questions that your candidates should have picked up at the beginning of the interview. For example, try asking questions like ‘do you remember my name’ or ‘have you looked at our website?’ If they say yes, don’t be afraid to test their knowledge.

3. Hire For Ambition

Hiring the most attractive face will only take you so far. You want to find bartenders that are always willing to learn, go the extra mile and able to keep their cool under pressure. Confidence is great, but everyone has room to grow, so picking an eager candidate over an experienced one can often result in long-term success. The same goes for picking someone that seems they would go the extra mile. You want your team to consist of someone who is willing to do whatever it takes, even if it is outside his or her job description.

It is important to note that employees must understand their greatest responsibility – catering to all their customer needs. If this seems to be a grey area for your candidate, then choose someone who is more passionate about the happiness of his or her guests. Scenario-based questions are another great way to pull these attributes to surface. Especially when considering who would work best under pressure. You want to find someone that can keep smiling and handle a complaint as smoothly as possible. Even if the error is on your end, guests will always appreciate composed service.

Everyone has opinions, and as a company, you should be willing to listen. In the event staffing industry, feedback is one of the greatest avenues in finding solutions to improving your services. Not only will customers feel listened to, but they are more likely to come back knowing that even though they had an issue, you were attentive and welcoming to their suggestions. Bartenders and servers will be the first in line for complaints, that’s why you must make sure they are well equipped with the knowledge to handle these situations.

Choosing thick-skinned individuals will allow your company to thrive because they are more likely to take comments constructively as opposed to offensively. The more mature your employees, the more mature your services will be.  In that being said, you want to make sure your staff is acting appropriately in all situations. If they aren’t busy serving drinks, you want someone who will take initiative and keep busy, rather than just standing around. If a guest decides to gossip with your staff, you want to trust your employees not to participate negatively in such encounters.

At Bartendo, we strive to hire the best suitable individuals for any occasion. Whether you hire a bartender, server, or take advantage of one of our mobile bar packages, you will surely be satisfied with our customer service experience. Contact us to inquire more about our bar services for your next event staffing needs.

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