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36. Bright Idea: Table Indicator for Waiters November 13, 2006

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product, Service.

I don’t like hovering waiters, or feeling rushed to make a menu decision, or being distracted from a conversation just because I am wanting a refill, or having to tell a busboy to put that plate down since I am not done licking it yet.

This Bright Idea is a lamp that is used as an indicator for the waiters. For example, one light (or shade, or colored filter) can indicate that a waiter is needed (e.g. we are ready to order now; I would like a refill/more mayo; our table can be bussed; we want the check, etc.).

Read on for Considerations and another Bright Idea:

Considerations: Remembering to turn off the light after being served. I vaguely remember, many years ago, a waiter at T.G.I.Friday’s reaching under her end of the table, where there was a switch to turn off some sort of indicator. However, in my memory, this was only used to say we were ready to order (and not subsequently), and there may have been a pager involved as well. Anyway, I don’t understand why something like this isn’t more commonplace.

Another Bright Idea: Clyde’s Restaurant in Chevy Chase, MD leaves a pitcher of filtered water at your table. You control your hydration, and the waiters can take care of more important matters. This should be standard.


1. Jason - March 26, 2008

You can raise the flag at Pancho’s, or turn your little chip over at most Brazilian steak houses.

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