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Effortful Help


Techniques > Tipping > How to Get a Bigger Tip > Effortful Help

Description | Example | Discussion | See also



If they ask you for anything (and you can help this by asking use if there is anything you can do for them), show that you are putting yourself out for them.

Never moan, grimace or imply in any way that helping them is other than a delight for you. Act with enthusiasm, as if you are really pleased to help.

Do let them discover that you are doing all you can for them, for example by telling them what you will do or did. Let them see you are going the extra mile.


A customer asks for the location of a nearby hairdresser. The server says 'I'm not sure but I think Sam will know a good place.' She layer returns to say 'Yes, Sam has tried quite a few and Cutters is really good and quite fairly priced. Ask for the stylist called Jane. Shall I write that down for you? I can look up their number and address.'

A taxi driver asks a customer what they are doing in 'this lovely city'. When they reply that they are just visiting, he asks if they like going to stage shows. When they show enthusiasm, he gives them a run down of what's on and the critical acclaim of each and offers to help them get tickets. They ask to stop at a box office, where the meter continues to run, then they give a good tip at their final destination.


When you go out of your way to help people you engender trust and liking as they feel that you really care about them, which results in them liking you too. You also trigger the exchange principle whereby they feel obliged to help you in return. And of course a way to do this is by giving you a bigger tip.

If you show any unhappiness when helping them, the illusion of friendship is broken and they may well seek an alternative explanation for your help (easily guessing you are just angling for more money).

See also

Ingratiation, Exchange principle


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