Macaroni Grill and The Neverending Nametag

The profession most commonly associated with nametags is food service – and rightly so. If there’s anyone whose attention you must be able to grab ASAP, it’s the person delivering your food!

But like so many others, I too worked in food service for many years as a waiter, busboy, bartender and food runner. So I know the value of self-disclosure through the offering of names to expedite and effectively provide excellent service.

Recently I ate at an Italian restaurant called Macaroni Grill. If you’ve never been there before, I highly recommend it – unless you’re on a low carb diet, in which case I would avoid the establishment at all cost because the bread is AMAZING.

The handbook has a strict policy about nametags: they don’t wear them, they write them. When the server comes to the table to greet the guests, he takes a crayon and writes his name on the white paper tablecloth – upside down. (It’s fascinating the first time you see it.)

So when my server Josh scribbled his name in perfect all-caps in front of my Diet Coke, my face lit up.

“This is great!” I thought, “I’ll never forget his name.”

But think of all the times you went out to eat, forgot your waitress’s name and desperately needed some ice water, ketchup, the bill or a booster seat – but couldn’t get her attention because you forgot her name. Frustrating, wasn’t it?

In fact, it could be downright painful if your dinner companion yells something like, “Hey, why didn’t you ask her for a napkin? I’ve got soup all over my new pants!!”

But at Macaroni Grill, you won’t forget your server’s name. You can’t. It’s right in front of your face during the whole meal! As a result, this reminder of your server’s personal information will make it easy for you to grab his attention when you need it.


How do you keep yourself in front of YOUR customers?

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Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That guy with the nametag

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