Don't be afraid! The 9 Myths about Cutting Off a Guest

Face Your Fears Here and Now!

I originally started this, thinking about why bartenders don't cut guests off.  Maybe it's because or because...nope.....sometimes it could be.....  All the reasons come back to the same one. They are afraid. Afraid? Afraid you say? That big bad bartender? Yeppers, people. I've seen the most confident, know it all, seasoned bartender become like a kindergartner at nap time. "You can't make me.... I don't wanna!".

You served them the alcohol.You are responsible. You have to refuse them service. 

9 things you think will happen that probably won't.

1. They will hate you. Yeah, they might. But they'll thank you in the morning.

*seriously, I've had people come back the next day and thank me.

2. They will hit you/push you/get violent. Drunken people can be unpredictable. But, hey, that's what doormen are for. Seriously, Get properly trained, stand physically clear, don't pull the drink physically out to their hands, and stay calm and the odds of this happening dramatically go down. Don't do anything that can escalate the situation.

So what's the best way for you to react? With your own self-control intact. Teaching by example is your most powerful tool. Speak calmly, clearly, and firmly — not with anger, blame, harsh criticisms, threats, or put downs.

3. They will continue to drink. Ummm, a reminder: You control the flow of alcohol at your establishment. When you refuse service of alcohol, you are in charge. No means No.

4. They won't take you seriously. Yes, the guest may try and laugh you off in a weak attempt ignore what is happening. But when you stick to your decision to give them another drink, trust me: they will take you seriously.

5. You'll look like a fool/the bad guy. Sometimes it sucks to be the adult in the situation. Most likely the other customers will appreciate it. And shows that you value them and their safety.

6. It will be some huge thing /drama. It's not unless you let it be. Keep it professional, civil and smile. Stay calm. No drama.

7. Not tipping/ looking bad in front of other customers. Think about this: if something happens to the guest and take legal action...they are not coming back to tip you. Ever. Or you could lose your job, pay a fine or get your wage garnished. So look at the long term consequences of your action. Not the short term $5 or 10 bucks.

8.  You are afraid or scared. There is always some uncertainty when deciding and executing refusing service to a customer. A bit of an adrenaline rush, you could say. This never goes away. It's part of it. It helps keep you prepared to handle any problems. Think of it as the anticipation before a big sports game or an actor going on stage. 

9. No backup/ afraid of repercussions from owners. It can be intimidating to know you are going at this alone. But you are not. The law is on your side. At the end of the day, you have a legal obligation to provide responsible alcohol service. At the end of it, you have to look yourself in the mirror and know what you did is right. And that means protecting the guest and the people they might possibly hurt or damages they could incur. A good owner will know this. And appreciate you are protecting their business.

So, there you have it. Just like the monsters under your bed, once you turn the light on, they disappear!

Happy Safe Serving,

The TIPS Lady.


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