Compatible with mobile devices and tablets
Toggle menu

5 Skills A Server or Bartender Can Transfer to Any Profession

August 4, 2021

Anyone whose been in the service industry long enough can tell you that doing the job well requires a variety of skills. These are the types of skills that the average person often lacks, and as a seller-server of alcohol in Illinois, you’re trusted to bring them to the job consistently every single shift.


So, here are 5 skills required by any great server or bartender that are easily transferrable to any profession:


Public Speaking and Presentation 

If you haven’t heard, most people are more scared of public speaking than death. That’s right, most people would rather die than speak publicly or give a presentation.

As a server or bartender, public speaking and presenting naturally comes with the territory. It’s part of the job every single time you have customers, especially when you’re serving a large party. Large parties often require you to professionally command everyone’s attention while you stand in front of them and present certain things like menu items and specials. And sometimes, especially if you’re working in fine dining, you’ll have the opportunity to do this in front of celebrities and professional athletes. This is a skill that is really worth honing over time as a server or bartender because it makes you hugely marketable when pursuing other professions. It’s a skill that will make you a tremendously attractive candidate to any employer. So, stand up straight, be confident, speak clearly, and use your shifts as an opportunity to become the best public speaker you can be. As a server or bartender, you’re always on stage.


Multitasking Under Pressure Like a Pro

If you’re not able to multitask, then serving or bartending is likely not in the cards for you.

Multitasking, and doing so while in the weeds and under pressure to do multiple things for different tables quickly and efficiently, is undoubtedly a requirement for being a great server or bartender. And it’s one that is easily transferrable to other professions and areas of life. Regardless of what profession you hope to pursue one day, sharpening your multitasking skills while working in the service industry will benefit you greatly when the time comes.


Zeroing In On Your Own Side of the Street

Tons of stuff happens in a restaurant that’s beyond your control. In fact, little happens that is. You can’t control what the kitchen is doing. You can’t control it when the hostess seats multiple tables in your section at the exact same time. You have to learn to figure out what you can control and zero in on it. When the kitchen is behind, you can keep the bread and drinks coming, and you can check in persistently on your own plates in the hope that you’ll be the squeakiest wheel. When tables are seated simultaneously, you can bring drinks at one time instead of staggering them.

Whatever you do to get through those tough moments, you’re focusing on what you can do and being flexible enough to make it happen. You’re able to let go of the expectation that other’s will do their jobs and make sure you give everything to your own. Whether you make serving a career, or switch to any other career, this ability to play it cool is a valuable skill you should highlight and sell.


Making It About What Actually Matters

Being a server isn’t really about the food. When you serve, you don’t simply bring food to the table. You have to “read the room,” so to speak. You have to pick up on nonverbal cues at each table you serve to know how to be the server they’ll appreciate. Do they want to chat and be friendly? Do they want as much privacy and as little interruption as possible? Not only do you have to discern this, you have to also handle tables that are the opposite, simultaneously.

Knowing how to read the room is an invaluable skill that is sought after far beyond the world of food. If you can do it with a table full of strangers, you can do it anywhere.


Knowing You Can’t Do It Alone

Good servers know they have to rely heavily on the hosts and hostesses, bussers, bartenders, barbacks, server assistants, the back-of-the-house, and even managers to do the best job possible. This is how the best business gets done for everyone involved, including customers.

The ability to farm out to others tasks that aren’t a good use of your time is a key skill in many professions. And, being willing to share in the rewards is what motivates everyone to work toward the same goal. This is an advanced managerial concept, and as a server, you have a demonstrated understanding of it.


Don’t lose sight of the many skills you possess as a server that any employer would be lucky to have. BASSET On The Fly was created by servers, for servers. We’ve of course got you covered on your BASSET card, and we’ve got your back on so much more!


Back to Blog