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My data collection method include a personal structured interview. I used O*Net to develop a general understanding of a typical task-oriented job analysis for a waiter/waitress. I asked general questions such as “how did you find this job,” “what did the application process entail,” and “what are the top five tasks that you deem most important to describe your job?” I then compared the answers of my interviewee to the information that I collected on O*Net and came up with a well-rounded description of this occupation.
One KSAO that I believe to be extremely important for this job would be the skill of active listening. My interviewee exemplified how this KSAO is important to her job. They stated that if they actively listen, the order will be taken properly the first time, and they avoid having to ask twice and making themselves appear incompetent and unattentive to the customer. The more accurate the server is, the better the will be tipped by the customer. Active listening is important because many confusions can be made when taking the order of a customer, and it is important to pay attention to the requests that are being made. Active listening is also important when given tasks by managerial positions for the same reason of avoiding mistakes. Another KSAO that is important for this job is the ability memorization. A waiter/ waitress must have the ability to describe everything on the menu along with its ingredients and preparation process. They also require this ability in order to remember the different tasks that are given to them, because the restaurant may be very busy sometimes, and it is important to know the list of things that must be done along with their level of priority. The last KSAO that I will discuss is oral expression. The waiter/ waitress must feel comfortable talking to customers in a friendly fashion, and they must be comfortable expressing their opinions on certain menu items, and have the ability to entice customers to purchase certain products on the menu. They must be clear and concise, having no expression of discomfort, timidness, or confusion. Confident and proper oral expression will impress the customers and leave them with a good image of the restaurant.
A few assessment strategies that were used upon hiring my interviewee are what I deem to be very useful for selecting effective performers for this occupation. The first assessment strategy is a standardized test. It is pertinent for the server to know all of the information regarding the menu items, and a standardized test would consist of recognizing the ingredients, descriptions, and preparation procedures for the menu items. After given the opportunity to study the menu and after given exposure to the food items themselves, the applicant should have the ability to pass this standardized test with flying colors. If they fail, they are not fit to properly sell the product of the restaurant. Another example of a standardized test would be to practice serving to a general manager or supervisor. My interviewee actually took this test, and was required to treat their general manager as if they were a normal customer. They were tested on points of conversation and menu knowledge. Practicing with an authoritative figure is a proper way to prove knowledge and competency to establish trust and understanding with your employer. Lastly, a performance test is critical to analyze potential job performance in this setting. At least two weeks of on the clock training should be necessary, in which the training server is given one small section to serve, where they are to practice their interpersonal skills and menu knowledge on a small group of people. They can be guided by more experienced servers, but once they reach their comfort level, they are to serve on their own and the satisfaction of their customers and the amount of their tips will reflect their level of performance.
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