Increase Your Earnings with Suggestive Selling and Upselling

Many individuals in the hospitality industry depend on their tip money for the majority of their income. There are several ways to net bigger tips, increase customer satisfaction and impress your manager by netting bigger sales. It’s not rocket science, a higher tab very often equates to a higher tip, and what service professional doesn’t want to increase bar sales, and in turn, their own tips? Providing excellent customer service in addition to responsible beverage service is one of the most important duties of a bartender or server. In addition, try these tips to raise the bar even higher and increase your earnings:

  1. Upselling is one of the most popular and effective ways to increase your earnings potential, as long as it is done the right way. One example is if your patron orders a drink that can be made more than one way. If a mixed drink comes in a standard size or large size, it would be acceptable to ask if they’d like to order the larger size. Similarly, you can promote your top shelf liquors. If a patron asks for a mixed drink, ask them if they’d like to select the premium option. A simple, “Would you like your Cosmopolitan made with Grey Goose?” is an easy way to upsell your offerings without being pushy.
  2. Suggesting premium beverages or signature drinks over well drinks is another easy way to increase sales. A patron can get a well drink anywhere in town, suggesting one of your establishment’s signature cocktails or a drink that is very popular with other patrons can instantly boost the bar tab, and your customer gets to try something new and exciting.
  3. If patrons ask for beverage suggestions, provide information on what you like, ask them about their drink preferences and make suggestions based on their individual tastes, and also be knowledgeable about wine selections and pairings. A service professional can help make a guest’s night-out extra special with some extra attention and a few simple suggestions. For more information on food and wine pairings, check out our blog post, “Bon Appetit! Food and Wine Pairings 101.”
  4. Drink sales aren’t the only item to focus on; menu upselling is also a great way to increase your sales. Try offering your bar patrons an appetizer or entrée to go with their drinks. A simple, “Would you like to try some buffalo wings to go with your beer?” is always a good tactic.

TAM® of Nevada loves to hear suggestions from students and other industry professionals. What suggestions would you give servers on ways to net bigger tips?

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

 

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Are You New to Nevada? You Must Complete Nevada-Specific Alcohol Awareness Training

TAM CardAlcohol education cards from out-of-state won’t transfer in Nevada. Industry professionals should complete alcohol awareness training with TAM® of Nevada to meet local requirements.

Are you a new resident in Las Vegas? Welcome to Nevada! Workers are drawn to this great state for its booming entertainment and nightlife industry, and all of the hospitality jobs that come along with the action.

Have you already received job-related alcohol training in another state? We often receive inquiries from out-of-state students asking if their alcohol education cards and education are valid in Nevada. Unfortunately, liquor laws are specific to the states, counties and municipalities, so no, alcohol licenses are not transferable. All individuals hoping to work in the beverage sales and service industry in Nevada must complete an alcohol training program that has been approved by the Nevada Commission on Postsecondary Education. TAM® of Nevada is an approved provider, and the only official provider of TAM® Cards in the state of Nevada.

Individuals that need to obtain their TAM® Card can complete their training online or in a traditional classroom environment with our certified instructors. Additionally, we now offer open lab time on Tuesdays for students who would like to complete their alcohol awareness training online, but do not have access to a computer. Students are welcome to visit our training center and use our computer lab to complete their training on Tuesdays between 9:00am and 5:00pm. Likewise, classroom-based training is available at several convenient times throughout the week, including Spanish classes on Tuesday evenings. Check out our alcohol awareness class schedule to find a class that is convenient for you!

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

Come Prepared and Ace Your Next Hospitality Industry Job Interview

So, you’ve obtained your TAM® Card and Health Card, you’ve gone scouting for a job, and now you’ve got an interview lined up… What’s next? Searching for hospitality industry jobs in a down economy can be challenging and stressful too. It’s important to remember that landing an interview is only the first step; now you have to impress hiring managers with your winning personality, great attitude and industry know-how. Are you prepared to put your best foot forward and land your dream job?

A great way to prepare for your interview is to think about common questions that are likely to be asked, and how you’ll respond. Think of it like a practice test. Wouldn’t you want to review what’s going to be on your quiz before you sit down to take it? Hospitality Job Site features a great article with common questions that hiring managers like to ask job candidates in the hospitality and nightlife industry. You can read the article titled, “Common Interview Questions,” and use that as a starting point for your preparations. Still feel like you’re not quite ready? Consider asking a friend to give you a mock interview. You can practice answering questions and gain helpful feedback about your answers and your demeanor.

When you get to your interview remember to:

  1. Arrive on time. Allow yourself extra time to get to the interview just in case, and be prepared to fill out a formal application once you arrive. By arriving a few minutes early, you’ll be ready to meet with a hiring manager at the scheduled time, and won’t keep them waiting while you finish paperwork.
  2. Be confident. Smile and sit up straight. Be sure to project a positive attitude.
  3. Thank the interviewer for their time. Be sure you leave on the same positive note you came in on.

You should now be well on your way to acing your next interview. For more tips to making the most of your job search, check out our blog post, “You’re Hired! Landing a Job in the Hospitality Industry.”

What tips have you received for making a great impression in an interview?

Resources

Health Cards – Southern Nevada Health District

Common Interview Questions – Hospitality Job Site

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

 

Are You Doing All You Can to Prevent Drunk Driving?

Every 30 minutes someone dies in an alcohol-related crash. And, did you know? Alcohol is a factor in 6% of all traffic crashes, and over 40% of all fatal crashes (National Safety Council). These are startling facts that one cannot simply ignore. Drunk driving is one of the most dangerous activities someone can engage in. It’s also 100% preventable.

An alcoholic beverage service professional has a legal and moral responsibility to serve alcohol responsibly, keep a close eye on imbibing patrons, and promote an alternative means of getting home if anyone appears too drunk to drive. One should make sure guests can make it home safely without injuring themselves or others.

Remember, drunk driving is always dangerous, and not just to the driver. Pedestrians, passengers and others on the road can all become victims. Recently in the early morning hours on April 28th, a woman was killed when she was hit by a suspected drunk driver on the Las Vegas Strip (Las Vegas Sun). This is another terrible reminder of the dangers of getting behind the wheel after having too much to drink.

Some people are able to ignore the facts. But remember, a victim of a drunk driver is someone’s sister, brother, mother, father, friend, coworker, etc. The Transport Accident Commission in Australia created an incredible PSA on the dangers of drunk driving which can be viewed here. This is a graphic video, but one of the most powerful PSAs we’ve ever seen at TAM® of Nevada. This video is certain to hit close to home for some, and sharing with others will help spread the message that drunk driving is never the answer.

There are a few things you can do to support and promote this message with your patrons.

  1. Complete your alcohol awareness course with TAM® of Nevada to learn about responsible beverage service. Course highlights include identifying false identification, clinical effects of alcohol, laws, rules and regulations, customer disturbances and service guidelines.
  2. Become familiar with sober driving services available in southern Nevada. Keep the number to a reliable cab company and any other sober driver services at your bar so that you can make the call whenever necessary. Companies like Designated Drivers, Inc. provide a responsible alternative to driving while impaired. A driver will be dispatched to take your patron home in their own vehicle, no worrying about retrieving their car after they sober up.
  3. If a group of guests is at your establishment and an individual within the group is becoming intoxicated, check with a sober member of their group to make sure that they have a plan to get the intoxicated individual home safely. If there is no designated driver assigned, offer to call a cab or sober driver service.
  4. Familiarize yourself with company policies when it comes to intoxicated patrons and suspected drunk drivers. Alert your manager or supervisor if you need to cut someone off, if you need them to intervene in the situation, or if you have any concerns about a guest’s safety.
  5. If you have a friend or family member that you worry may have a drinking problem, and may be at risk to drive drunk, do what you can to get them the help they need. Refer to our blog post “April is Alcohol Awareness Month” for tips on how to recognize a drinking problem, and how to help.

Drunk driving is a serious problem that can affect so many. What tips would you give someone else to help prevent intoxicated individuals from getting behind the wheel of a car?

Resources

Drunk Driving – National Safety Council

Woman, 28, accused of DUI after collision kills pedestrian on Las Vegas Strip – Las Vegas Sun

Designated Drivers, Inc.

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada