Tip of the Day

What Does Your Host Stand Say About Your Food Service Operation?

The host stand or station is often the first thing customers/guests/members see when they enter the dining room.

Cleanliness.  Since first impressions are important, it is essential that the stand is clean, well-maintained, and free of clutter.
  • Stand surfaces should be clean, wood surfaces polished, all supplies and equipment should be out of sight and out of the way, and there should be no hand-lettered signs or pricing cheat sheets taped to the stand or wall.
  • The stand must be neat and well organized.
Organization.  The host stand requires certain items of supply to operate efficiently.
  • Supplies include duplicate pads, pencils, pens, scotch tape, credit card charge slips, paper clips, stapler, extra staples, phone book, reservation book, seating chart, grease pencil, comment cards, member list, extra point-of-sale tape and ribbon, etc.
  • All supplies and equipment should be neatly organized and stored.
  • Menus should be neat, clean, free of spills or stains, without dog-eared edges, and include any inserts for specials.  
  • It is the host’ responsibility to ensure that there are sufficient menus and they have been examined for serviceability.
Information.  Because of the highly visible role of the host, he or she will be asked any number of questions about the establishment and its operation.
  • As a result, the host stand should have a three ringed binder with pertinent information about the establishment, its services and venues, hours of operation, policies and procedures, catering information, business cards of key management staff, scripted answers to frequently asked questions, and information about upcoming events, such as holiday meals, special events, and entertainment.
  • While it is management's responsibility to provide the host/hostess with this basic information, the host/hostess must also take responsibility to ensure that the information is up-to-date and accurate.