1. LEARN ALL ABOUT YOUR BAR’S INVENTORY.
Get in before your scheduled shift and have a look through all of the different beer, wine, and liquor your bar has to offer. When someone asks, “what kind of vodka do you have?” know the answer without looking. If you have to go look it appears unprofessional and will also waste time… and we all know that time (especially for bartenders) equals money.
2. TAKE THE WHOLE GROUP’S ORDER BEFORE MAKING DRINKS.
If you take one order, make one drink, take another order, make that drink, it slows you wayyy down. It may also annoy your patron. If there is a group of 5 people, get all 5 orders before you start mixing their drinks. Maybe they all want Grey Goose with soda! Score! You just saved a ton of time. Line up 5 glasses and bang those drinks out.
3. BE HONEST.
Being dishonest is not a good practice in any job.. and like with any job, being dishonest will catch up with you. Do not be dishonest with employer in any way. If you want to comp drinks for your friends, speak with the manager about their policy on giving out drinks. Most places have set rules and protocols on how to do this. Be honest with your patrons as well: never overcharge or shortchange them.
4. DON’T TAKE THINGS PERSONALLY
You are bartending and therefore will be dealing with drunk and intoxicated people. You WILL have customers be rude to you and a whole variety of ways. Brush this off and realize that they have the problem, not you. If you are a professional and courteous bartender, don’t worry about these people, they will pick on anyone standing in your shoes. Do not instigate confrontation, it will only equal more trouble for you.
5. WORK ON YOUR SPEED.
When you’re at home, practice pouring accurately and quickly. This will save you a lot of time behind the bar and ultimately make you (and the bar) more money. Also practice chilling shots and making shaken drinks. The more accurate speed you have, the better bartender you will be.
6. KEEP A POSITIVE ATTITUDE.
There are a whole variety of things that could put you in a bad mood behind the bar: bad tippers, rude customers, or troublesome coworkers. Teach yourself to rise above all of these things. The happier you are the quicker your shift will go, the more fun you’ll have, and the better customer service you’ll provide!
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