Stashing mounds of cash after a weekend filled with double shifts is no easy feat. It takes serious willpower not to impulsively pour your hard-earned money into quick fixes like fancy meals and new shoes. These luxuries often compensate for your hectic lifestyle, making it easier to give up weekends.
However, there's something to be said for putting some of your tips away for a rainy day. If you work in the service industry, these pointers can help you make beaucoup bucks and save them too.
Secrets of serving
The best way to save more is to earn more, and it might have less to do with customer perception than you think. According to Forbes magazine, this matters, but not as much as a few key psychological strategies. Michael Lynn, a professor in food and beverage management at Cornell School of Hotel Administration, shared his wisdom with the publication.
"If servers can establish a social connection with their customers, they'll get better tips," said Lynn. "The simple fact is, we're more likely to want to help someone we're connected to, and we're more likely to care about someone's opinion, what someone else thinks of us, if we have a social connection to them."
That means servers could see better tips if they offer up a tidbit of personal information with that side of ketchup. If you're in college, don't be afraid to share this with regular guests. Once you establish a friendship, the guest will likely be just as excited to hear about your vacation as he or she is about the evening specials.
Aside from this money-making pointer, servers and other service industry employees can deploy a few tactics to rake in the dough. As Forbes reported, these include:
- Saying "Hi my name is…"
- Dressing up for work
- Wearing red lipstick – it was better received than a natural face in a French study
- Adding fun decor to uniforms
- Squatting at a table
- Referring to guests by name
- Writing thanks on a check.
Don't commit these money faux pas
Once you've taken to one or several of these techniques, you might notice an increase in income, which is the perfect time to hunker down and save. Demand Media pointed out that budgeting cash payments takes a lot of self-discipline but is achievable.
"One of the biggest pitfalls for servers is taxes."
At the end of each shift, swap your small bills for bigger ones, making it less tempting to spend $5 here and there on impulse purchases. Subsequently, put all of your tips in the same place if they build up over the course of a few shifts. Doing so gives you a more realistic view of your money with less chance of losing it.
One of the biggest pitfalls for servers is taxes. Even the biggest penny-pinchers will backtrack come April if they haven't been planning accordingly. As most places don't pay enough hourly to cover taxes, you'll need to budget them yourself. Otherwise, you might be left shelling out thousands of dollars in taxes, inadvertently throwing your saving plan off track.
Because temptation can be the downfall of proper planning, it's important to leave some wiggle room in the budget for fun purchases. Spend in moderation, save excessively and reap the benefits of your hard work in the coming years.
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