THE WAITER HATER
DEAR GOOD SOMM BAD SOMM,
I absolutely loathe my wait staff. They are lazy prima donnasI know I should enrich them with wine knowledge, but I'd rather strangle them with my serviette. How can I invest in a group I have no respect for?
The Waiter Hater
Dear Waiter Hater,
You should be ashamed of yourself! As a sommelier you are not only a figure of authority, but also you are a role model. Instead of competing with your young wait staff, you should be trying to give them a hand up in the industry.
Why shouldn't you want your team to be successful? The more knowledge you share, the better it is for YOU! You're not only training servers, you're training salespeople to tell the story of your wine and your list to the guest!
Assign readings, do pop quizzes, have tastings nightly, play fun games and give away prizes to ambitious individuals.
Remember: a rising tide lifts all boats!
You should aspire to create a fire and a passion in your staff just as someone once instilled that fire and passion in you!
Dear Waiter Hater,
I could not disagree more with my counterpart on this one. The lowly waiter/actor/model you are tutoring today is the same one pushing you out of your high-salary position tomorrow!
Don't you like being a big shot? Don't you love having wine makers and sales people coming around to kiss your ass and treat you like a GOD!? It's nice to get some free sample bottles and a wine trip once in a while ain't it??
Don't train yourself out of a job!
Next thing you know, you'll be wandering around some retail store in a polo shirt and a name tag helping old men on Rogaine find Opus One or selling chardonnay to Soccer Milfs. (Snoorrrr!!!)
It's no secret the cost of labor is on the rise. Sometimes the guy or gal with the biggest salary also has the largest target on his or her back!
Remember: the dumber your servers are, the more valuable you appear to be! And perception is reality...