Bartending is more than just mixing and serving drinks. Most of us have dealt with a bad bartender at some point in our lives, so we’re well aware that bartending is a skill that not everyone has. However, that doesn’t mean bad bartenders can’t be turned into great ones…it just takes some work, some practice, and some knowledge. Here are a few secrets of successful bartenders. Following these tips will take any bartender to the next level!
Be friendly—to everyone.
Sure, you’re busy, but that doesn’t give you an excuse to ignore customers. Be sure to smile and greet every customer at the bar. It doesn’t matter if you can’t take a customer’s order right away; at least acknowledge him/her and let him/her know that you’ll be able to help soon.
Keep it clean.
When you’re busy, the cleanliness and organization of your bar might be the first thing to go. But this shouldn’t be the case! Customers notice a dirty bar, and it will definitely negatively impact their opinion of their bartender.
Be an entertainer.
Being a bartender is a tough job because it’s actually several jobs in one. Yes, you have to serve drinks, but you also have the responsibility to keep the customer entertained. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to know flashy bartending tricks, but you do have to at least keep up conversations with customers.
Keep your eyes open.
Being a bartender means being aware of everything going on around you. This means you notice when customers have nearly empty drinks and you’re ready to bring them new drinks right away.
Be an expert.
Customers expect you to know your stuff. If they want recommendations, be ready to give them. You should be able to help customers pick out the perfect drink based on their tastes (fruity, strong, etc.). You should also always know what your specials are.
Know your regulars.
Chances are, you have customers who return again and again, and they probably tend to order the same thing each time. It means a lot to customers if you can remember their names and their orders. This often makes the difference between being just another bartender and being a customer’s favorite bartender.
Forget about tips.
How do you define a successful bartender? Your definition might be based on tips. However, the bartenders who receive the best tips are the ones who don’t fixate on them. Customers notice when bartenders are simply trying to get better tips, and they don’t respond well to it. Just focus on giving great service, and the tips will follow.
Bartending can be tough, but that doesn’t mean you can’t improve. By keeping these tips in mind, you can go from being an average bartender to being a successful one!
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