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Skills for a Waitress

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A waitress has many duties and tasks at hand besides simply taking food orders and delivering meals to tables. While being a server may seem like a simple job, there are many skills one must have in order to be successful. If you are interested in finding a job as a waitress, knowing what skills the job title requires can help you decide if it is the right fit for you.

Customer Service Oriented

A waitress is the main interaction between the customer and the restaurant, which is why good customer service skills are important. This means being able to be personable, friendly and always willing to help the customer.

Coordinated and Multitasking

Coordination and the ability to multitask are two skills important for waitressing. For coordination a waitress is expected to do many physical tasks such as carry trays of food and multiple drinks. With multitasking they must be able to do these things while taking orders from new tables, putting orders in to the kitchen and cashing out customers.

Tolerant and Patient

Tolerance and patience are skills required when dealing with customers and the hectic environment of running a busy restaurant. For example if you have a rude customer, you still must be able to tolerate him and put a smile on your face. Another example is working together with the other workers including the cooks, hostesses and managers as between these areas you will have mix ups and a waitress must be patient and not allow mistakes to deter her from her customers.


Memorization is another important skill for a waitress, as much of her job requires it. While waitresses can write down orders, they also need to remember additional customer requests, faces to go with orders, drinks for each customer and the restaurant's menu and specials. A very personable waitress might also take on the task of learning and memorizing her customers’ names too.

Mathematically Inclined

Having good math skills is a basic necessity for a good waitress. While restaurants might supply cash registers and computers to do a lot of the math, waitresses are still in charge of exchanging the actual money so they need the ability to count change. Waitresses may also have to add up bills or split them up between tables on their own as well as factor in gratuity for their tips and split their tips between other employees at the end of a shift.


Amy Davidson is a graduate from the University of Florida in Gainesville, with a bachelor's degree in journalism. She also writes for local papers around Gainesville doing articles on local events and news.

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