3 Traits You Need to Survive the Restaurant Industry

Team Player

You know the old saying, ‘There is no ‘I’ in team?’ If you have not learned this lesson on the basketball court or during a group project in class, you will be forced to learn it when you are working in a restaurant. While you might have all of the energy and initiative to run the restaurant all by yourself, that does not mean you should do so. You need to be able to rely on others throughout your shift.

After all, let’s face it. You are one person and in order to operate a restaurant successfully, so many things have to be in action at one time. Someone needs to be manning the kitchen while other workers take orders and serve customers. This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to get so caught up in the hype of each shift that you forget to let others take the reins when you need to focus your attention elsewhere.

For instance, if you’re trying to get a table cleaned and prepared for the next group of customers, you cannot be worried about the order that has just been prepared by the cook. In order to succeed in this world, you need to be able to communicate with your fellow coworkers and rely on them to work with you toward the common goal of providing the best grub and customer service for every patron that walks through the door.


Even if you are working with the best team of coworkers in the world, you still need to be able to think on your feet and multitask. There will be situations where you need to perform several actions and functions at the same time. You might be expected to count the cash register drawer while taking down a customer’s reservation. You will not have time to put these tasks off, as the customer will grow impatient and annoyed, while the employee waiting to have their drawer counted will put the other customers’ transaction processes way behind schedule.

It goes without saying that working in a restaurant is a very stressful job. To be successful in this position, you need to be able to keep a level head while multitasking. Without a doubt, you will find yourself overwhelmed at some point and that is perfectly fine. We all find ourselves in that situation. The important thing is that you remain calm and focus on the task at hand. If you can cast aside the anxiety of multitasking under the highest of pressures, you will be fit to work in the restaurant business.

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I’m sure you have seen all of the memes and jokes about what it is like to work in the customer service industry. The sad part is that the majority of it is true. Now, I’m not saying this to scare you, but it is important for you to know what you are getting yourself into when you apply for a restaurant position.

Customers can be immature, impatient, petty, and/or just plain rude and nasty. I used to work in the fast food industry at a national chain that I will not name. It was a cruel world because customers would take their frustrations out on me as a cashier. If food took too long to cook, I would take their insults and harsh tones. If they were upset about prices, they would speak to me as if I was the one who set the prices. There was even a time where my manager had a milkshake thrown at him.

My point is this: people can be nasty. To survive and thrive in this industry, or any industry for that matter, you need to know how to stand your ground and stay professional even in the toughest of times. It is easy to break down and be nasty to the customers who are being nasty to you. While I wouldn’t blame you for thinking about it, I highly suggest you learn how to keep your professional face on if you want to keep that job.

While you shouldn’t allow yourself to be stepped on, you also shouldn’t stoop yourself to the level of the customer. It looks bad on your part and on your restaurant’s part. If you can do your best to keep a happy face on, even in the most irritating of situations, you will definitely survive and thrive in the restaurant world. (info per uloop.com)