Recently, I had a girls night out with high school friends I had not seen in a long time. The evening included drinks and dinner in a small south Texas town where Deb, our server, was the star of the show. She was amazing. Since it had been a while since my friends and I were together, you can imagine the enthusiastic level of our “catch up” chit chat. We ordered drinks before dinner and took some time to decide on the entree.
Deb, the superstar waitress, delivered our drink order and gave us plenty of time to look over the menu. Part of the charm of most restaurants in the Texas Hill Country is that you can expect to wait for your food. Everything is cooked fresh and they seem to move at a slower pace compared to the big city franchise restaurants.
Sensing the length of the wait and being aware of an up-sell moment, Deb served our meal and asked if we would like a second round of drinks. My friend stepped up and said yes for everyone. I had driven to the restaurant so I quickly declined the round two offer and declared myself the designated driver. This is when the “simple” magic happened.
Deb retrieved drinks for the rest of the table and gave me a pleasant surprise. She said, “Since you are the designated driver, we would like to offer you a soda or tea on the house.” This was such a nice surprise. I rarely indulge in adult libations and often declare myself the designated driver. I’ve never had anyone offer to pay for my sweet tea and I’m a big sweet tea fan! Don’t get me wrong. I never mind paying for my non-alcoholic beverage. However, this simple gesture was a Big Deal. Deb’s actions made me feel so good. It was such a nice touch and unexpected surprise.
I enjoyed the rest of the evening with my friends. We all enjoyed our food, conversation, drinks, and FREE sweet tea! I share all this to say it doesn’t have to be complicated. Deb was aware of her audience; it was a girls night out; we were not in a hurry and enjoyed her checking in on us, but never felt rushed. Her gesture of offering the complimentary drink to me was an above and beyond step. It wasn’t overly complicated and made a big impact on my experience.
Simply stated, if you work as a server, it is the little things that make a BIG difference. Can you guess how that “paid off” for superstar Deb? I’ll be back. I’ll be bringing my friends. Oh, it’s a given that she got a 20% + tip as well. What simple thing could you do to create a “BIG Experience” result?