Employee Training Guide for a Night Hostess


Welcome to the Service Team of Riddles and Vittles. We hope the experience you encounter as you fulfil your duties as a Night Hostess will be very rewarding.

Night Hostess is a high profile job in the hospitality industry. It is through you that we at Riddles and Vittles extend the hospitality of this establishment to every guest. If you succeed in creating a pleasant atmosphere to which guests return, you are contributing to valuable service in the field of public relations.

Night Hostess offers many opportunities for personal development and growth. You meet people from all walks of life and from all over the world. You learn to cope with a broad range of people and situations. New friendships develop as you interact with co-workers and guests.

You have an opportunity to learn many aspects of food preparations, and the proper methods of presentation and serving.

Night Hostess is an interesting job, but it is not an easy job. With this in mind our manual has been prepared for your benefit. We ask that you study it (and any additional material we suggest) very carefully.

Being prepared for your job will make it much easier for you. The satisfaction of a job well done, and the resulting financial rewards are direct results of the effort you've put into your job.

In any job, reliability and punctuality are of prime importance.

  • All staff must come in on time. If you are sick or cannot make it to work for some other reason, or you are going to be late, call the hostess at 555-5555. All shifts must be filled for operations to run smoothly. If you are sick, the following are recommended guidelines for calling in sick.
  • If scheduled for morning shift, call the night before and speak to the hostess.
  • If scheduled for evening shift, call the morning of that shift and notify hostess.
  • make sure your uniform is clean and pressed;
  • have your clean, white, ironed Riddles & Vittles T - Shirt;
  • be sure your footwear (white running shoes - no logos ) is comfortable, clean, and in good condition;
  • have clean white socks;
  • have clean, well pressed red shorts;
  • make sure you are wearing a minimum of jewellery and make-up:
  • Be sure you are wearing your name tag. It is an important part of your uniform;
  • personal cleanliness is a must, as is a clean, neat hair style. Long hair must be attractively tied back.


A)  Hotel Procedures: (I.E. 2 forms, 1 wall reservations chart, telephone description, daily rates, and cancellation policy)

B)   Cash Register

C)   Float Disbursements

D)   Door/Telephone Greeting

E)   Point of Sales Procedures/Pamphlet

F)   Daily Sales Report Sheet

G)   Deposit Slips and Procedure.


  • Clear desks of any clutter and tidy guest book table. Provide pen. Discard flowers if they're not fresh;
  • Check cash register for adequate bill and coin supplies. Replenish from "bank";
  • Stock supplies of menus and charge slips on the desk;
  • Number Waitresses guest cheques and record in scribbler. Put these cheques in float boxes and give out to waitresses as they arrive for work;
  • See that waitresses sign for a section on the laminated 'stations" sheet;
  • Check all tables to make sure they are set properly;
  • Make sure stations are well stocked, placemats, napkins, silverware, clean glassware;
  • Check tables for cleanliness, and proper setting;
  • Greet all guests ; "Good Evening, Welcome to Riddles and Vittles";
  • Seat guests and distribute menus. Supply booster seats or high chairs for small children;
  • Assign tables as evenly as possible among the 8 sections. Some sections are easier to fill than others so keep this in mind when seating guests;
  • If dining room is filled , take guests names, number in party, and exact time as they arrive, giving them an approximate waiting time;
  • Assign one of the night's bussers to check bathrooms hourly for cleanliness and supplies;
  • Waitresses are to be let go in the order they began, as the evening slows down;
  • The restaurant closes promptly at 9 PM; depending upon the number of people in party AND when the final pre 9 PM people were seated. Speak to any late comers and suggest other eating places which might still be open. Thank them for coming. Offer them one of our menus and ask them to drop in again.


  • Schedule 'front of house' employees with Joel for the following 1 or 2 weeks;
  • Do efficiency units' weekly sales report-daily;
  • Keep waitress'-special days off-list
  • Swat flies at all times. Place remains in garbage
  • Keep a current "we need" list
  • Make sure you notify if low on any supplies
  • Check chalkboard for special instructions from kitchen
  • At all times it is the responsibility of all service staff to do a visual check of the entire dinning room. This is required to ensure that everything looks clean.


  • Please remember that your position on our sales/service team makes you a company representative. You are often the only direct contact with our customers and the company will be judged by your appearance, attitudes, manners and efficiency of service
  • Customers are faster to criticise employee attitudes and performance than anything else. They lose sales, tips and customers)
  • Be sure you understand and follow company policy for employee meals.



  • Good grooming is absolutely essential. You will be given special instruction on this subject
  • You are part of a "sales/service team". This means co-operation with fellow workers. No Prima Donnas, please
  • Never argue with a customer under any circumstances. Don't try to defend mistakes or blame others. When something is wrong, admit it promptly and correct it cheerfully. If any customer situation gets out of hand, turn it over to your superior at once
  • Stay in your station when not actually performing duties. Always keep tables under observation. No more than two service people should stand together in a customer area.
  • While on duty, even at slow periods, don't congregate in a group for small talk. Sitting with customers, chewing gum or smoking on duty are never permitted. Avoid all loud talk, shouting orders, etc. (All of these things create a low-grade image for the business and for you.


  • A Guest is the most important person in the food service business.
  • A Guest is not dependent on us - we are dependent on him.
  • A Guest is not an interruption of our work - he is the purpose of our work.
  • A Guest does us a favour when he calls - we are not doing him a favour by serving him.
  • A Guest is part of our business - not an outsider.
  • A Guest is a human being with feelings and emotions - just like our own.
  • A Guest is a person who brings us his wants - it is our job to fill those wants.
  • A Guest is deserving of the most courteous and attentive treatment we can give him.
  • Every Guest is a " VERY IMPORTANT PERSON ", it is our responsibility that he is waited on quickly, quietly, and efficiently.



  • go to the beach
  • join in the great Island Scavenger Hunt
  • go golfing
  • go to the horse races
  • take a seal watching tour
  • rent bicycles
  • deep sea fishing cruises
  • walking tour
  • get tickets for the musical
  • go horseback riding
  • tour one of our many craft studios
  • dig for clams
  • try the go-carts
  • visit the many attractions
  • enjoy a cycling or hiking adventure
  • visit the library
  • go shopping
  • take a tour on a double decker bus
  • drop in on a festival


  • Think of yourself as a Salesperson!
  • Your section - dining room is your store. Guests enter your store to buy not browse.
  • Take advantage, sell them on yourself, your restaurants delicious food and tasty beverages.
  • Share your knowledge of the menu, make guest's fill special and well taken care of.
  • Think of your section as your "store".
  • When your section is full of customers, take advantage and suggest cocktails, appetizers, extra's, wines, and desserts that will enhance the guest's dining experience.
  • The biggest mistake an employee in the food and beverage industry makes, is believing that they are working for someone else.



  • server is legally obligated
  • avoids legal sanctions


  • rate of consumption;
  • full versus empty stomach;
  • size and ideal body weight;
  • previous experience with alcohol;
  • mood;
  • presence of other drugs in the body.


Loss of Inhibitions

  • becoming overly friendly;
  • changes in volume or rate of speech;
  • disturbing other customers;
  • foul language.

Impaired Judgement

  • complains about weakness of drink;
  • changes in consumption rate;
  • becoming argumentative;
  • orders doubles.

Impaired Reactions

  • lights more than one cigarette at a time;
  • seems unable to focus eyes properly;
  • seems unable to concentrate;
  • slurred speech;
  • unreasonable sweating.

Loss of Co-ordination

  • difficulty in picking up change or cigarettes;
  • spills drinks;
  • staggering;
  • unable to sit upright, falling asleep briefly.

These behaviours, though not always indicative of intoxication, are examples of possible reactions to alcohol, and are offered as a guide to help identify intoxication.


  • Slow rate of alcohol service;
  • Offer food or non-alcoholic beverages as alternatives to alcohol;
  • Promote activities other than drinking;
  • Enlist aid of guest's friends to slow or cease guest's alcohol consumption.


  • Notify supervisor and co-workers;
  • Use calm, courteous and firm approach;
  • Avoid using emotionally charged words (eg drunk);
  • Listen and empathize with guest but neither or back down;
  • Communicate intent to guest privately - to reduce embarrassment;
  • Identify and enlist the aid of sober friends.



The following is a list of our restaurant policies. It is your responsibility to know, understand, and follow each policy at all times.

1.  Uniforms must be clean and ironed and worn at all times. The uniform for waitresses:

  • Clean white running shoes, (no logos)
  • Clean white socks
  • Red shorts
  • Clean, white, ironed F&V t-shirts with crisp logo
  • Name tag

2.  Personal Hygiene:

  • bath or shower daily
  • good dental hygiene
  • clean hands and nails ( Nails short and clear nail polish )

3.   Long hair must be worn off the shoulders and tied back away from the face so as not to interfere with food service.

4.   Gentlemen must be clean shaven and hair kept neat and clean.

5.   Employees must punch in only when they are scheduled to begin work unless asked to do otherwise. You will be paid for scheduled time only.

6.   Staff meals - one per shift, as shown on a staff menu, are available at a reduced price. These must be eaten in the kitchen BEFORE punching in. There must be no eating during your shift either in the kitchen or dining-room. Staff meals are only for those people who are on shift and working. Details will be posted in the kitchen. To avoid embarrassment to yourself and management PLEASE honor this policy.

7.   The telephone at the restaurant is a business phone. It must not be used for social reasons. We will not page staff to leave work to come to the phone. Please inform friends of this.

8.   A regular size pop is 25 cents for staff while on shift only. All food and pop must be paid for when you get it. All staff food must be entered in the STAFF MEALS book for inventory purposes.

9.   If you are not working you should not be at the restaurant. If you are waiting for other staff members please do so outside. No loitering in the waitresses station or outside the door.

10.  Your pay cheques will be deposited in your bank account every second Friday. Your pay period runs from Sunday to Saturday inclusive.

11.  Please do not ask to have cheques cashed at the restaurant. The only cheques we accept are Travellers Cheques. No personal or government cheques of any kind are to be cashed.

12.  Anyone caught stealing will be dismissed immediately. This includes all food items.

13.  When answering the phone, it should be answered pleasantly in the following way: " Good morning/afternoon/evening, Riddles and Vittles. _______speaking."

14.  Employees are entitled to breaks. Breaks are issued by the supervisor, according to shift worked and in a fair manner. One hour non-paid break is to be taken for every 5 hour work period.

15.  When you are scheduled for a shift, it is your responsibility to be there on time. If you are unable to come to work please phone as early as possible so - a replacement can be called in.

  • If you are sick, the following are recommended guidelines for calling in sick.
  • If scheduled for morning shift, call the night before and speak to hostess.
  • If scheduled for evening shift, call the morning of that shift and notify the hostess.

Please do not call just before you are expected to begin your shift saying you cannot work. This is very unfair to your co-workers and places impossible demands on them.

16.  Please know your work schedule. All schedule changes must first be approved by the hostess. Requested days off must be written in calender journal. Requested days off are not automatically granted; however, every attempt will be made to fulfill your request. Schedules provide an approximate number # of hours working that shift. Supervisor can request you stay longer or leave early if not busy. Schedules are posted weekly on Fridays. The staff does not have time to go checking schedules. You alone are responsible for knowing your shift time, and we insist that you refrain from calling the restaurant. This will minimize incoming calls and staff interruptions.

Smiling is part of our restaurant policy. Remember, friendly service is always essential. A relaxed, friendly atmosphere is a critical part of dining out. Our primary product is a social experience in which food plays only a part. We are in the business of creating happiness. Happiness among our staff members is quickly noticed by our guests. A disgruntled, "couldn't care less" attitude is noticed just as quickly. Let's all endeavour to do our utmost to cheerfully complete each responsibility we've done your best is a great satisfaction to you. It also earns immeasurable respect from your co-workers and management.


Categories: Management