How we change what others think, feel, believe and do
Make sure you always look smart and clean.
Keep your body clean and tidy. Shower daily. Regularly have your hair cut. Keep your nails clean, trim and tidy.
Women should have basic make-up which is not too gaudy. You should look good, not like you are going out to a party. Exactly what this means will depend on where you work, but be sensitive to what is 'just right' as opposed to 'too much'.
Wear something to make you stand out a little from other staff and appear as an individual rather than a faceless member of staff. If customers mention it, thank them and have a brief discussion about it.
For women, it has been found that wearing something in your hair (Gueguen. and Delfosse, 2012) can have a particularly strong effect. For example, flowers or a ribbon can make a notable difference. This can also be something to differentiate you when you have to wear a uniform. For men, tie and socks may be the only item they can vary.
While it may not be a good idea to out-dress your customers, you should always be clean and tidy. If there is a uniform or standard clothing for the job, always ensure this is cleaned and pressed. If food is spilled on you, change at work (which means having spare clothes to hand).
Pay attention to shoes, ensuring these are clean. Wear comfortable, smart shoes so you can feel relaxed while looking good.
It is a reality of how we live together that we judge people by how they look. If you are clean and tidy, customers will be far more likely to like you and consequently give you a bigger tip.
In a restaurant, cleanliness of the staff will be associated with the cleanliness of the food. If you look unclean, they may unconsciously think the food unhygienic. The worst emotion to evoke is disgust, as this will lead to customers leaving earlier and not coming back, which means lower tips now and in the future.
Jacob, C., Gueguen, N. and Delfosse, C. (2012). She wore something in her hair: The effect of ornamentation on tipping. Journal of Hospitality & Marketing, 21, 4, 414-120.
Jacob, C., Guiguen, N., Boublry, G. and Ardicioni, R. (2009). Waitresses’ facial cosmetics and tipping: A field experiment. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 29, 188-190.
Lynn, M. (2009). Determinants and consequences of female attractiveness and sexiness: Realistic tests with restaurant waitresses. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 38, 737-74.