For those of you who don't know me personally, I have been working part-time as a barista for almost a year now, and have realized I have developed some "pet peeves" from working in the service industry (for a little too long in all honesty).
Here is a list of things I wish customers would/wouldn't do.
Don't be on your phone when you walk up to order.
There is something incredibly frustrating about not being treated as a fellow human being and instead of being treated as some sort of coffee machine. Have the decency to hang up your phone, make eye contact with me, smile, and talk to me like I am a person.
Please stop using Starbucks terminology. We have small or large. Easy.
Do not stand and stare at me as I make your drink, or reach over the counter and grab a cup or a cup lid that is right in front me. Staring at me will not make me make your drink any faster, and it makes me incredibly self conscious.
Please use words like "please" and "thank you". I make sure to be polite to you, and I notice when customers return the politeness. Also, I have a decaf button....don't make me use it.
Do not come up and complain about needing your order RIGHT NOW when you see that there is a line out the door and the restaurant is full. I not only have to help walk-in customers, I also have to take care of dine-in customers, phone orders, online orders and GrubHub orders. Please be patient, I am going as fast as I can.
And the biggest one of all: please tip me, especially when you order multiple drinks and you see me take the time to do each of them right. My hourly pay is very poor, and my tip money allows me to eat that week.
(photo by brokelyn.com)
Believe it or not, I do enjoy working as a barista, and I enjoy seeing my regulars and talking with them. Most of the time, the nice customers balance out the not so pleasant customers, but there is the occasional jerk that ruins the rest of the shift for me. Overall, the message of this post is: be nice! Saying please or thank you costs you nothing, and can play a big influence on my overall mood for the rest of the shift. Baristas are people too!