There are plenty of bartending jobs and depending on your location, you should attend tastings and seminars or classes on cocktails and alcohol. If you're in or near an urban area, look for events that have expert speakers. Working in a busy bar requires detailed organization and the development of habits that save time and allow you to handle all the tasks that are required of a waiter. While almost every waiter has a story about guiding a customer through an uncomfortable living situation, or simply listening to the complaints and philosophies of a bar guest, the most important customer service skill for waiters is simply to ensure that their guests have the best possible experience at the bar.
When serving freely, waiters mentally count the seconds to measure the amount of liquid they are serving. This is especially true for well-mannered waiters who know a lot about their craft and must translate their experience to customers who can't speak as knowledgeably about beverages. A cocktail course can provide you with a great knowledge of cocktail making, an understanding of how a bar works and some other important information, such as the sizes of the containers and knowledge about beer and wine. One of the most difficult aspects of working as a waiter is maintaining composure and coherence in a busy bar environment.
You'll often learn how to prepare cocktails and receive hands-on training with waiters who need your help. If you're being interviewed for your first job at a restaurant or bar, you may not have faced the exact situation they're asking about, but sharing a story about a similar situation is the best way to show that you can do your duty as a waiter. One of the most important interpersonal skills that any worker needs, but especially a waiter in a chaotic workplace, is strong communication. Advanced knowledge in cocktail making and the study of mixology are what differentiates great waiters from the average consumer of beverages.
This is a waiter who works in a bar or restaurant that has a specific focus, such as a wine, whiskey or beer bar. Thieves hate to be confronted, so asking early on to show that you're tough with bar robberies will scare off a lot of dishonest waiters. Let me tell you that working as a waiter is much more than just knowing how to prepare Singapore Sling or Long Island iced tea. It's hard to know which waiters would rob you and which are honest, but this question is a good way to weed out thieves.
Bartenders need to be skilled at quickly and accurately creating drinks quickly and accurately for multiple customers quickly and accurately, while remembering orders, serving them swiftly and keeping track of all inventory and cash transactions.
These skills, commonly referred to as hard skills, should be included on any bartender's resume and contribute to creating an excellent customer experience that makes customers want to come back.
1. Bartending Skills
Bartenders' primary responsibility is to create the beverages their customers order. Therefore, high levels of skill are necessary in order to mix drinks appropriately and serve them at the appropriate temperature. Accuracy is of utmost importance; even the slightest mistake when measuring or mixing a drink could ruin its flavor and become unacceptable to their patrons.
Another key skill of bartending is knowing how to work under pressure. Bars are chaotic environments, with tight spaces and loud music often contributing to stress levels. Busy bars also experience high employee turnover rates which puts additional strain on staff members. A great bartender must remain calm while still performing efficiently despite feeling "in the weeds", an industry term used to refer to being overwhelmed with work.
Bartenders need to be adept at processing payments quickly and accurately, which requires excellent math skills - specifically an understanding of percentages - for accurate change calculations after customers pay their tab, working efficiently with multiple orders at once during busy periods, or totalling customer's total orders.
If bartenders want to develop their skills, they can attend a bartending school or read recipes and practice making popular drinks at home. Attend tastings and seminars sponsored by alcohol producers and distributors for more knowledge of beverages available and how best to serve them. Reading historical books about drinking culture may provide further insight while building confidence when responding to customer queries.
2. Customer Service
Bartenders interact with customers from diverse backgrounds and traditions. They must be flexible enough to meet customer requests while adapting their style as necessary, developing strong rapport with customers to keep them coming back for more. A friendly and courteous attitude are vital in creating lasting customer relationships and keeping people coming back time after time.
Bartenders need to be capable of helping guests place food orders, change drinks and close out tabs with no difficulty or anxiety despite long lines or busy environments.
As the face of your establishment, as bartender you serve as its public face. You are both entertainment and production; creating products patrons visit for. Generating and keeping loyal customers is vitally important; doing this requires remembering their names and providing consistent service.
Attention to detail is another essential component of bartending, and that extends well beyond crafting delicious drinks. It requires adhering to stringent sanitation standards and maintaining an orderly bar, including keeping supplies such as straws and ice cubes readily available at all times.
Customer service skills play a critical role in career advancement for bartenders. They should be able to emphasize these soft skills when applying for other jobs such as marketing or sales; their experience behind the bar can demonstrate their ability to work well with other staff members while building relationships with customers - which are invaluable skills in any industry. Furthermore, using point-of-sale capabilities, bartenders can demonstrate they can process payments quickly and accurately.
Bartenders need to be creative to juggle multiple tasks, serve drinks, and ensure customer satisfaction. Their imagination allows them to come up with new drink recipes, enhance cocktail presentations and craft Instagrammable beverages that drive sales. Furthermore, bartenders must come up with ideas for happy hour or special event drinks and find ways to improve the operation by either cutting costs or increasing revenue.
Bartending can be a fast-paced environment with multiple guests at any one time, requiring the bartender to communicate clearly and remain calm during stressful moments. A bartender who easily loses her composure cannot meet the demanding requirements of their position and may negatively affect guests' experiences.
Bartending is a team sport, and an effective bartender should have excellent working relations with all staff members they interact with on a regular basis. They must understand what other employees are working on and assist when necessary (restocking inventory or cleaning up spills quickly for example), collaborate to address issues during shifts that arise quickly, and offer their ideas about improving bar operations when asked for. Soft skills may be difficult to teach but are essential if a bartender wants to excel in his or her position.
Bartenders have many more responsibilities than just making drinks; they must be able to efficiently and effectively manage both front-of-house (customer service-oriented) and back-of-house tasks (processing payment transactions, inventory control, accounting and reporting). Therefore, bartenders require strong organizational skills in order to fulfill all their daily responsibilities effectively.
As an example, an effective bartender will know to maintain a clean workstation before, during and after shifts so as to not put off patrons due to an unpleasant environment. Furthermore, they must quickly process payments and issue receipts - this requires knowledge of percentages, arithmetic and quick mental calculations as well as ability.
Bartenders require short-term memory in order to quickly recall drink orders quickly and efficiently, and greet regulars by name, which helps create loyalty between customer and bartender.
Bartenders must also have the ability to collaborate effectively when working in a fast-paced environment, such as replenishing inventory, cleaning up spills and fulfilling guest food and beverage orders. Furthermore, bartenders may need to fill in for wait staff in taking orders and accepting payments if necessary.
Finding a bartender with both hard and soft skills is integral to the success of your establishment. If you are having difficulty recruiting qualified candidates, consider upskilling existing employees instead. Glimpse provides bars and restaurants with indisputable video audits of food and beverage transactions which were improperly recorded at Point-of-Sale terminals or not recorded altogether.
5. Attention to Detail
Bartenders need to pay close attention to every customer order. This requires making sure that each beverage ordered meets all expectations - it requires making sure there's enough mixer or ice for instance - as well as serving it properly and maintaining an orderly bar layout while also keeping their tools of the trade clean and safe from dust accumulation.
A great bartender knows how to create various cocktails and has an in-depth knowledge of their ingredients, measuring accurately, free pouring techniques and bar tools such as alcohol, syrups, bitters and garnishes - essential components for making the perfect beverage!
Additionally, bartenders must possess both short- and long-term memories to successfully perform their job. Remembering customers' orders as well as names may prove difficult when there are multiple customers ordering the same drink at once; you may need to memorize popular cocktails or know which drinks pair well with certain dishes; also essential is being able to check IDs to ensure all patrons served by you are legal drinking age.
Hard skills for bartending are just as critical to their success, so an impressive resume must highlight both soft and hard skills essential to being an excellent bartender. An effective resume can help applicants land interviews quickly and start their job successfully; therefore it's crucial that potential bartenders understand what makes an outstanding resume so that they can create one themselves.