WOW Restaurant Service Program

Restaurant Server Service Steps
Restaurant Server Service Steps

Successful restaurants in today’s world have a system to ensure the Servers are Providing WOW Service to the customers. By using the Restaurant Server Service Steps, your customer service will maintain high standards. Many restaurants are having a difficult time staying afloat due to the economy and an unstable market. Today, most people want to stretch their money, and do not want to spend their hard-earned cash on mediocre service. If the guest receives mediocre service, they will go to the restaurant next door where they can get WOW service.

You should be the restaurant next door that is giving WOW service by using the restaurant server steps of service. When you train your servers in how to provide top-notch service then you will see excellent results. Successful Restaurants use a proven service program.

This is the importance of the Restaurant Server Service Steps

Set a high standard, start training your servers today, and become a WOW restaurant.

The first part of the WOW Service Program is for all the servers to know your Menu. Then they need to know the Restaurant Server Service Steps and receive top-notch training. Next, they need to perform the WOW Steps of Service consistently. They must feel supported in their efforts by the management staff and the rest of the restaurant team. Cooking staff will also need to be performing top-notch and communicating with service staff.

When it comes to using the WOW Steps of Service test, the servers need to study the steps through the Restaurant Server Service Steps Quick Reference sheet. When they are ready to take the test, they need to take it by memory and not by using the reference sheet. Plenty of servers say that they know the steps of service, but then when asked them to recite the steps, many of them cannot remember. It is because they do not know them. How can you ensure servers follow the steps if they do not know them?

Training is essential. The trainer for the WOW Service Program needs to the best server in the restaurant or your Front of House Service Manager. The trainer needs to score 100% and can verbally recite the steps. In addition, the trainer should be consistently demonstrating the steps of service in their work. The person leading the training must be a top-performing server who provides WOW service to the customers on a daily basis. This the server who has repeat customers coming in and asking for him/her by name. Once the trainer understands the WOW Service Program, he/she can begin training the other service staff.

Here are some effective ways to train your servers in the WOW Service Program:

Menu Knowledge

Make sure your servers know the menu and always keep the servers informed of new items or menu changes. The base of all service is to know the product they are selling–which is your menu. Then they need to know how to sell it. This is a key element of the steps of service. Without this supporting base, then your servers won’t be consistently able to perform WOW service. The first part of the training should include quizzing the server on the menu. They should know it in detail including descriptions and featured menu items.

Role Playing

You can train more than one server. Select an area away from your customer’s view, or train while the restaurant is closed. All the servers in-training must be able to view the trainer who is going to show the WOW Service Program. The trainer demonstrates the Restaurant Server Service Steps, step one through step six. Select some servers in-training or other available staff members to play the roles of guests.

Once the trainer has demonstrated the WOW steps of service and he/she will answer any questions of the servers in-training. Then the trainer picks one of the servers in-training to take his/her place until all servers in-training have completed the demonstration successfully.

Memory Game

The trainer will actually wait on real customers, by using the steps of service. A server-in-training will shadow that trainer, but the trainee should only observe and ask questions. As the trainer goes from step to step then he/she should verbally quiz the trainee. If the trainee does not know the step, then the trainer should correctly answer the question for them or prompt if they think the server will be able to answer with clues. Continue onto step two, then a few minutes later quiz the trainee again on step one until they know it by memory. Continue this process all the way to step six.

Customers Talking About Your Restaurant Service

Customers who have experienced WOW Service will look forward to coming back to your restaurant. These customers are your top form of marketing. Word of mouth will spread as you perfect the WOW Steps of Service Program. Word of mouth is the number one source of advertisement for any restaurant, and best of all it is free.

Did you know that the average person has an email address book, Facebook or Twitter account with over 150 to 300+ friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances?

When a person leaves your restaurant receiving great customer service it creates a positive memorable event. In return they spread the news to everyone they know. Of course, not everyone will visit your restaurant because of what he/she heard. However, it only takes a handful of people to make a huge impact on building your sales.

Here is an example, you have a restaurant that seats 50 guests or more and your restaurant has WOW service and you have served at least 50 guests during an evening. This is a low estimate since you’ll likely seat each table more than once. Then those 50 guests will tell their friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances. You receive four guests for every 50 people that talked about the great service. Then you have gained two hundred new guests. If they also receive WOW Service, then they will spread the word. At that rate, it would not take long for you to have a line of guest waiting at the door. People are willing to wait for fantastic service. That is building a reputation one guest at a time.

Why are people going to take the word of mouth over costly advertising on the radio or TV? Most people trust someone they know much more than someone they see on an ad. Because the level of trust that you have established into that person, it is called the trust of information factor. You trust that person, and therefore it is reliable information.

I am 13 and take Accutane at for 3 weeks. I am quite young but I have had acne since I was 10. I take 10 mg during the day. It is very difficult for me to swallow the tablets. But I am very satisfied with the result.

Maybe you consistently have to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on advertising. Instead, invest a few thousand dollars to get top-notch training ONCE! Then make sure your management and serving staff maintain that consistent WOW Service Program.

How can you benefit in word-of-mouth marketing?

The key is in your hand and you just have to open the door, it’s that simple. It’s starts with great service, like our WOW Service Program. A great investment would be for our trainers to come out and provide the first level of training. We can provide an going regularly service to review and retrain your employees. We are not trying to reinvent the wheel. We have put together a proven program in the WOW Service Program. It works; you just need to maintain it consistently. Many restaurants all throughout the United States use programs like the WOW Service Program and they are successful. Let’s ask that question again, how can you benefit from word of mouth marketing, it’s as simple as following a program with one, two, three, four, five and six steps of service executed perfectly. If you follow our program, it will result in the word of your WOW service spreading from your guests to their friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances.

What can Workplace Wizards do for your restaurant?

We can help train and mold your service staff into top quality servers by using the Restaurant Server Service Steps. We will teach them the benefits of the WOW Service program. We will get them to “own” the program. Our trainers have over 25 years of experience in the restaurant industry. The trainers have experience as servers and understand the challenges and rewards of the server’s position.

We have expert trainers and expert restaurant staff all combined into our terrific WOW Service Program. With many years of experience in training, and over 25 years of experience in the restaurant industry, we can make it work for you.

Customer service is the key to your success, you can have great food and well-presented staff, but you lack WOW service, and that alone will limit your success.

Call us today for a free consultation about how we can serve you. You can purchase the Restaurant Server Service Steps Form, the Restaurant Server Service Steps Test and Answer Key or for a great deal, you can purchase the bonus bundle of all Server Forms.

Our Server training packages includes:

  • Review of your menu, policies and procedures to make sure our staff are on target with your needs.
  • Our staff on-site for the training for eight hour shifts days, evenings, nights or weekends. We recommend several days of training with some real service time where we can monitor and coach your staff.
  • Training on the fundamentals of server position
  • Server handbooks
  • Training service staff in a hands-on training
  • Training through proven training techniques
  • Restaurant Server Steps of Service presentation with a upbeat live Instructor
  • All tests and paperwork including; Server tests, Restaurant Server Service Steps tests
  • Question and answers
  • Top-notch trainers who have server experience
  • Games and activities that will provide motivation and incentive to servers-in-training

We can also train managers, cooks, dishwashers, bussers, greeters and bartenders:


All we ask of you is:

  • Advance copies of menus, policies and procedures at your restaurant, and any other relevant information about your restaurant. if you don’t have any policies or procedures or an employee handbook, then we can work with you to create it before our training.
  • A meeting room, or your dining room where we can do the training
  • A location for our viewing monitor screen or access to your TV Screens from our laptop
  • Motivational awards and incentives for the staff such as gift cards, movie tickets, etc.
  • If your location is more than 30 minutes away from our location, but within a reasonable driving distance, then we add transportation or mileage costs. If we are traveling out of state, then we ask for airfare and accommodations for our trainers.

Welcome to the Workplace Wizards

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Welcome to our blog!

We look forward to serving you.  On our blog we will share information and ideas. The topics will follow our weekly tip of the week topics. The right side of this page shows the history and future topics. Feel free to browse the list.We encourage you to post questions or comments on the blogs. Also, if you have a request for a specific topic , please send us a message at
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Donna Schim, CEO Workplace Wizards, Schim Enterprises LLC

The Importance of Server Menu Knowledge

The Importance of Server Menu Knowledge

Servers are really your “salespeople.” They are in the customer’s eye during almost the entire visit. The server is the customer’s key person to learn about the menu, to express their needs server-menu-knowledge-text-imageand concerns, to order what they want, to receive their order and to pay for the order.

Think of it this way. Let’s say you walk into an appliance store looking for a new refrigerator. You are greeted by a friendly salesperson, but then when you start to ask him about the refrigerators, but he can’t help you because he doesn’t appear to know the products.

The expectation is that the sales person knows about the product they are selling. Servers are your restaurant’s salesperson.I’ve heard people say, “Anyone can be a server; it’s unskilled labor.” I disagree with that statement. The server needs to have a lot of skills and abilities.A great server must be good at handling multiple responsibilities at once. They have a good memory about the menu items and descriptions.

They are efficient and always thinking ahead. They understand the importance of keeping the restaurant clean and sanitary. They are able to make customer’s feel comfortable. They know how to communicate clearly. They have a pleasant demeanor, even under stressful situations. They are professional and polite while handling customer concerns and complaints.Let’s focus on the menu knowledge of the server. The server needs to have an understanding of the various menu items. It’s also important to know the key menu items.

They know the popular dishes, featured items, and signature menu items. The servers know menu items that may be customized. They are aware of common food allergens, and will respond to customer’s needs. They will never recommend an item that could contain allergens when a customer has expressed concern about that item.

They won’t argue with customers about the menu.Anytime food is left uneaten or barely touched on the plate the server will ask the guest casually about the food. They may ask, “Was the fried chicken cooked in the way you like it?” The customer who may have never said anything will usually respond as to whether they were full, or if the item was under-cooked, burnt, too spicy or bland. This way the server is responsive to the customer’s needs. If the customer was simply too full, and if your restaurant has carry out, the server may suggest a carryout box. If the issue is given, then the server should involve the manager, so the problem can be addressed before the customer leaves.No matter what, any issues that occur during the visit should be handled before the customer leaves the restaurant. An excellent server is always on the alert for any looks of dissatisfaction or negative body language from the customers.

They should be proactive on keeping the customer happy. These are the servers who have repeat customers, and who may actually ask for that server by name on the return visit.If the restaurant has a salad bar, hot food bar, or dessert bar, the server will be familiar with the foods. If the restaurant is buffet style, they will be clearing the table frequently. They will frequently be serving drinks.

Part of their responsibility may be checking for food items that are low. When the meal is buffet style, the entire buffet is your menu.
When they start the shift, they will ask the following questions. Is there is a chef’s recommendation for the day? Is there a special promotion going on? How much are “add-ons?”

Throughout the diner’s visit, the server should be suggesting drinks, appetizers, entrees, desserts, and add-on items. If the drinks have free refills, the server won’t ask if the customer wants the refill during the meal time. The server should simply refill drinks when the glass is half-full. The customer shouldn’t have to ask for refills.

The server should suggest items for children or specialties that adults like. If serving specialty drinks or alcohol, the server will be familiar with those drinks and be able to make recommendations. Knowing the menu is a vital key in providing top quality service to each guest.

What are your thoughts on the importance of server menu knowledge?

Reasons Why Restaurant Fail

Reasons Why Restaurant Fail

I have been in the corporate restaurant business for over 20 + years. Corporate restaurants do have working systems. As long as management follows through on closed-restaurant-why-restaurants-failexecuting those policies and procedures consistently, the restaurant will succeed.

About one in four restaurants close or change ownership within their first year of business. Over three years, that number rises to three in five.

While a 60%, failure rate may still sound high, that is on par with the cross-industry average for new businesses, according to statistics from the Small Business Administration and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The most important point is that your business needs to be better than the person next door. Word of mouth is the number one way to advertise, and best of all it is free advertisement.

Too many restaurant owners do not have a working system in place such as:

  • Labor and food cost control
  • A Training Program
  • Systems and Procedures

Well trained managers who consistently follow procedures, give direction and do follow ups

These are just a few working systems that successful restaurants need to prosper. Statistically the cost of a restaurant’s food and labor should not exceed 60% of their sales.

Labor and food cost control

What is Labor cost? The cost of labor is the sum of wages, benefits, and payroll taxes. If you pay too much then you lose money. If you pay too little, then you lose employees. You have to have the right balance based on your sales. Sales include all your food sales, including beverages.

The formula: cost of labor/total sales (x 100%)

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For example if you sell $5000 in a day, and spend $1400 in labor for that day, your labor percent would be 1400/5000 = 0.28 (.28*100%=28%)

The labor percent for restaurants should be from 25% – 35%. This percentage depends on your restaurant style and mix of sales. Fast food restaurants may have labor costs as low as 25%. Restaurants with table service may have 30% – 35% labor costs.

Food costs

Food cost is the percentage of total restaurant sales spent on food products. So this means you need to keep track of your food inventory and how much you paid the vendors for that food. This varies based on what type of food you sell, the costs of food in your area, and how much you buy locally. Food cost is typically in the range of 28% to 30%. A steakhouse will have a higher food cost—30% or higher. You must accurately track your inventory and food costs to determine the total profits for the restaurant.

Training program

There are restaurants that fail every day in the industry because of poor training programs or no training. Training is a part of our lives from birth on. Sometimes training may be by examples, but for the food service industry, it needs to be much more than just an example. You need to make sure that your employee’s understand the importance of sanitation, food safety, portion control, cooking temperatures, storage temperatures, and more. Your service staff needs to know the menu, the style of your restaurant, and the customers you serve. They need to know how to sell the menu—meaning up selling and suggestive selling. They need to know how to Wow the customers. They need a friendly demeanor, a positive attitude and a personality where they can focus on the guest’s needs. Employees do not typically walk into your restaurant with all these skills. They need to be developed and trained properly. They need to be shown the right way, time to practice their skills, and focused management to help them stay on track. The managers need to be well-trained in each area of the restaurant. The management also needs to know how to motivate staff. They should know what each employee should be focused on throughout each shift—what to do when it is busy, and what to do when it is slow.

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