Waiters and Waitresses

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About the Job

Take orders and serve food and beverages to patrons at tables in dining establishment.

It is also Called

  • Wine Steward/Stewardess
  • Wine Steward
  • Waitstaff Captain
  • Waitstaff
  • Waitress
  • Waiter and Cashier
  • Waiter
  • Sommelier
  • Singing Waiter or Waitress
  • Server

What They Do

  • Provide guests with information about local areas, including giving directions.
  • Describe and recommend wines to customers.
  • Fill salt, pepper, sugar, cream, condiment, and napkin containers.
  • Garnish and decorate dishes in preparation for serving.
  • Escort customers to their tables.
  • Perform food preparation duties such as preparing salads, appetizers, and cold dishes, portioning desserts, and brewing coffee.
  • Bring wine selections to tables with appropriate glasses, and pour the wines for customers.
  • Perform cleaning duties, such as sweeping and mopping floors, vacuuming carpet, tidying up server station, taking out trash, or checking and cleaning bathroom.
  • Assist host or hostess by answering phones to take reservations or to-go orders, and by greeting, seating, and thanking guests.
  • Remove dishes and glasses from tables or counters, take them to kitchen for cleaning.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: SEC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Social interests, but also prefer Enterprising and Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Support and Achievement in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Education Required

Some of these occupations may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.

LMI Region

Wages

In 2013, the average annual wage in New Jersey was $21,900 with most people making between $16,240 and $30,180

Outlook

0.63%
avg. annual growth

During 2008, this occupation employed approximately 57,600 people in New Jersey. It is projected that there will be 61,250 employed in 2018.

This occupation will have about 365 openings due to growth and about 3,185 replacement openings for approximately 3,550 total annual openings.