Working as part of a team is one of the most rewarding and, occasionally, most difficult aspects of working in foodservice. Here are tips for being a strong team player:
- Come to work on time and be ready to work.
- Help other team members when they need it. You never know when you yourself may need a hand.
- Be open to feedback and willing to improve.
- Pay attention to when your coworkers do a good job, and don’t be afraid to let them know. A small compliment can go a long way.
- Take an active stance in solving problems.
- Take responsibility for your own mistakes, and don’t rush to blame others. There are, however, circumstances under which you should report a coworker’s inappropriate behavior (for example, if a coworker sexually harasses you, another employee, or a customer, or if a coworker deliberately contaminates a customer’s food). But most of the time, pointing fingers at a coworker only damages your relationship with that person, and doesn’t accomplish anything.
- Save all complaints and gossip for another time and place; bring your best attitude to work, and don’t give another employee reason to feel excluded.
- Always do your best.
Remember, no restaurant runs well from the success of a single employee; when you and your coworkers learn to work as a team, you will have better relationships, a more enjoyable job, and a more successful place of employment.