Poor Staff Training, Or Hopeless Staff?

July 16, 2010
By LCH1994 BRONZE, Clitheroe, Other
LCH1994 BRONZE, Clitheroe, Other
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I am a fifteen year old girl, who, like many my age has been scouring the area high and low for a job to sustain my high maintenance lifestyle, mainly involving jet setting around Lancashire on decaying forms of public transport. After being turned down from my local Cantonese restaurant, the Garden Centre and not to mention numerous cafes’s filled with cliental possessing a combined age of about one thousand and seventy, I got my lucky call back and finally broke into the catering world. I was told my role would include ‘doing a bit of everything’, in other words, I was given the prestigious title of part time waitress; wash up and as it turns out, general nuisance and source of aggravation.
As with any new employee, I started out eager to please. In those first few days I thought I would never tire of darting to and from the kitchen, delivering mustard and condiments to whoever would accept my kind offers. It was in these fatal few days however, I learnt, or rather made up my own tricks of the trade, resulting in me now being quite confident that I am the world’s worst waitress.
Over these few days, my spirits and enthusiasm were gradually dampened as I was reprimanded for my seemingly obvious errors. How was I to know that the couple that grace us with their presence each Sunday never have tartar sauce with their haddock? Or should I have been aware of the difference between belly pork and a turkey?
Needless to say, eventually the everyday wear and tear of the culinary career path turned me into a sorry excuse of a maitre d’. My good intentions diminished as I realised, I am not cut out for this. On realising this, I created a couple of my own cunning ploys. My personal favourite being this; should a customer ask me for something which I feel would put me out of my way, for example something time consuming like a cheeseboard, I simply tell them, ‘sorry, we do not serve cheeseboards’. I have found that this method of picking and choosing for myself what is on the menu, has proved to save me a lot of antagonism and work related stress.
Another tactic is the comeback I give my boss for each mistake I make. ‘Poor staff training’. Well, if I’ve said that once I’ve said it a thousand times. If I am not fulfilling my job correctly, surely, at the root of it there must be a reason other than the fact I am generally not gifted as a culinary steward. It was only last night I was once again in bad books for not charging a man for his drinks, resulting in the place being £15 out of pocket. Now, I could have hung my head in embarrassment, but no, I for one felt that even though my employers possess decades of experience, they were entitled to my expert opinion. Just moments before the drinks revelation, I had broken the chip and pin machine, by allowing a man to pay using an American Express card, which I later discovered we do not accept. That was the final straw for me. How, you might ask, could I make such a rookie error? Quite easily when I had not been informed of our designated currencies! So, as any crusader for any good cause would, I began my tirade about misinformation in the work place. It was received with great hilarity, although I might add, I was hoping it would have a more serious, thought provoking impact, but it got me off the hook, something to be thankful for.
All in all, I would say that my first job has been a learning curve. Of three things I am now sure.
Firstly, I should never work in the coffee industry. I made my first Cappuccino last night, which I proudly exhibited to the whole kitchen. Twenty minutes later, I cleared the very same cup away from an abandoned table. The coffee had no more than two sips taken from it.
I have poor balance. I have had comments from customers saying my serving was ‘precarious’. In addition, when carrying a plate holding salt and pepper shakers, I dropped the salt pot into the resident cat’s water bowl.
I should resign myself to a job in motivational speaking. If this fails, I should fall into the unemployment category, at least that way I will not be the downfall to any other businesses.

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