Thursday, November 30, 2006 by Ospite.

He was called into work on a day off. Early. One of his managers was in the office waiting. The news was not good.

Several times, our culinary manager has been warned about hanging out with our waitstaff outside the restaurant. Apparently it crosses some invisible line. The problem is that the waitstaff love this guy. Not because he lets them get away with murder, but because he knows how to run the restaurant well. His judgement is wonderful, and he commands the respect of 98% of the staff. We are willing to do his every bidding. Partly because he comes out from time to time and has a beer with us responsibly, has a good time, and we enjoy his company.

The office meeting ended his 10 year stint at our trattoria.

There was an uproar amongst the employees. Many of them owe him for their jobs. There are now only two competent managers, both with their hands quite full. This means the two relatively useless managers will pick up the slack. There's talk of a mutiny. I myself have already begun the quest.


Blogger caramaena said...

Fired/let go because the staff got on well with him and respected him?? What a ridiculous decision.

10:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

when i worked at macaroni grill the managers weren't allowed to spend more than ten minutes with us in a social setting outside work. kind of a dumb rule, but i can see the point of it. at the independently owned (and crappily ran) restaurant i work at now, the 19 yr old assistant manager is good friends with several of the servers and those servers tend to slack off a bit. that sucks about your manager though, they should have at least given him another warning before they fired him.

2:04 PM  
Blogger dimmy said...

hello, I'm a regular reader; and I enjoy your blog. I appreciate the regular updates.

as someone who has never worked in the service industry I don't understand the rule about not hanging with waitstaff outside of work. what is the reasoning behind this? from my [completely baseless and therefore worthless, but nevertheless very strongly held, as is all too typical in our world] perspective it seems nonsensical. an explanation would be greatly appreciated.


3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, if a manager were to hang out with a select few servers regularly, he might tend to start favoring them over the other servers (like giving the better sections to them, making sure they get more tables, etc) and that's unfair to the other servers who need to make money too. plus it can encourage the "favorite" servers to start slacking off and not pulling their weight because "the manager likes us." one of those rules that's kinda dumb, because there are excellent managers who won't do that and won't let their employees slack off no matter what, but some will.

10:29 PM  
Blogger Cricket said...

We had one manager who was beloved and who always hung out with the employees after-hours (and all the keys did). Then he became ill, and the next guy--also loved by most of the employees--was less well-liked by the manager over him, and got in trouble over hanging out. The invisible lines only seem to exist for some, not all.

2:43 PM  
Anonymous Logical Philosopher said...

I'm thinking it will, at the least, provide some great posts on the slacker managers!!!

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Noizu said...

Yes the people I work for are funny about that issue(brinker). I used to work with someone I'd known for more than 7 years. From another resturuant,
Paragon's Mountain Jacks.

So because he was a manger I lost a drinking buddy.

Paragon was much different. There were occasional company picnics. We had christmas parties (everyone came, managers, waiters, bussers, cooks, expos) servers would go out drinking with managers.

It was not perhaps the most professional environment but there was very little favortisim when it came to the floor. We understood one another better, and it was a healthier environment.

7:21 PM  

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At your service, Ospite

I am not in the restaurant business, I am in the people business. I use every opportunity to people watch, because to me, even the most mundane is fascinating.

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