In my case though, I wasn't a waiter, though I know a lot of people who were; neither was I a chef yet I have had the pleasure of knowing many who were and still are. Nope, my brief stint was during my student days working on the counter of a takeaway. Not as fancy I'll agree, but I enjoyed it and it helped support my financial independence during university.
However, there were a few times when things were not so peachy and so, as my gift to the community, here is my guide for people who want good service.
Forget tipping; the people who I gave special attention to were those that made that extra little effort to be nice. A friendly "good evening" and smile goes a long way. I read in the newspaper a few years back that a simple "please and thank you" to a bus driver can make his whole day and I can easily attest to that. It costs so little and can mean so much.
Sometimes, I amazed by people who believe that I have the powers to change the laws of physics. Asking me to hurry things up is not going to make the food cook faster. Trust me when I say that there's no big conspiracy to keep you waiting. It's in our best interest to get food out as soon as we can. I can give you an estimate on how long it'll take and I'll make sure that you're not forgotten.
However, consider the fact if you order a lot, it may take longer to cook than usual. If there a lot of people waiting before you, it may take longer to cook than usual. And certain dishes take longer to cook than others.
If you're a regular, then I'll remember you and the chefs will remember you. Ramming the fact that you're a regular in the hope of special services will also make us remember you but for the wrong reasons.
We also like to know what you thought of the meal. Letting us know that you enjoyed it means a lot to us. Letting us know constructively that a particular dish wasn't up to our usual standards is also something we'd like to know. Mouthing off in the hopes of getting a discount however, will only piss everyone off.
Money doesn't matter
…or not as much as you think. If you're ordering a lot, don't try to use that as a blunt weapon to battering us down with in the hope of a discount. Remember that there are two sides to this transaction. You're getting a big meal and we're getting reimbursed for our services in providing this meal. If you ask in a nice way or I like you, I'll probably do you a few favours anyways. But don't get into a huff if you don't get what you want. I'd rather serve 10 friendly customers with smaller orders than a single jerk with a large one.
BTW, if I realise that I've made a cockup with the sums and have accidentally overcharged you, you can be sure that I will you. There's no incentive for me otherwise. Likewise, if I've undercharged you, I'd appreciate the same response.
Recently, I bought lunch from a cafe and realised that I'd ended up having being paid for the meal. There was no hesitation on my part to let the girl know what had happened. The tiny monetery gain would have made no difference to my life. The smile and emotion on the girl's face let me know that I made the right decision.
And finally, as I realise that most of you are probably quite bored at this stage, I come to my last point. Mistakes happen. If they happen too often, then it maybe a sign that there is a bigger underlying problem and someone probably deserves to be punished. However, if it's a single cockup in a run of spotless service, then maybe you should consider that maybe, just maybe, nobody is perfect.