- When a guest walks into the banquet department and wants to reserve a farewell banquet for his boss. What kind of information will you get from the customer?
Answer: I need to get the information such as the time for the banquet, the number of people, the expense for each table, the customer’s name, the customer’s telephone number and so on. As the hotel requires, a sum of money as deposit is to be collected from the customer.
- Is the preparation work for a banquet important? Can you explain it with your own experience?
Answer: Yes. It is very important to make a full preparation for a banquet. To prepare for a banquet, the staff should be aware of the food requirements, table decorations, and service methods, and set the table accordingly for the banquet. That’s a tough job. Banquet staff could not provide good table service without these preparations.
- What are the ways of arranging the tables in a banquet for your customer?
Answer: The layout of the tables depends on the size of the room and the purpose of the function. For example, at weddings there is usually a “head table” for the bride and groom and their immediate family, and the rest of the tables will be of the same size, sitting approximately 8-10 people each.
- If a foreign guest comes to you for suggestions on Chinese food, and he/she would like something light and fresh, what would you recommend?
Answer: There are four major Chinese cuisines, or say, four styles. Each cuisine is distinctive and has its own style and flavor. As the guest prefers something light and fresh, I’d recommend Huaiyang dishes, which are famous for their cutting techniques and original flavor. Boiled beancurd shreds and Yangzhou fried rice are worth trying.
- If a guest got drunk during a wedding banquet and he broke a wine glass, what would you do?
Answer: Firstly, I would try to ask the guest to stop drinking alcohol, and ask him if I can serve him a cup of tea. Then, I will inform the banquet host of the incident and of the charge for the damage. If the host refuses to pay for the damage or it’s beyond my ability to handle the situation, I will ask the manager for help.
- Can you give a definition for “Banquet”?
Answer: A banquet is a very formal sit-down meal organized for special occasions such as weddings, fellowship reunions, business dinners, conventions or birthday parties. A banquet is usually attended by a large number of people.
- Do you think serving a Chinese banquet is much simpler than serving a western one? Why?
Answer: No, I don’t think so. The Chinese are used to taking dining as part of their culture, and while serving a Chinese banquet, we have to follow certain procedures. Although the working procedures for Chinese banquets are quite the same as those for Western ones, throughout the Chinese banquet, the working staff should observe the Chinese dining etiquettes and provide proper services. Sometimes, the job is really tough. For example, when receiving a wedding banquet, we have to serve hundreds of guests at the same time. It is really not an easy job.
- What is more important for banquet service, skills or attitude? State your reasons.
Answer: Both of them are important. One cannot do a job without professional skills; on the other hand, the guest won’t be satisfied if you treat him/her badly. Sometimes, I think, good attitude can make up for the lack of skills, and as I believe, if we show consideration and concerns, the guest may be moved. We should try to serve our guests professionally and with good attitude.
- What is the most important element in the hospitality industry?
Answer: The success of the hospitality industry depends on the people-pleasers. Everyone can master the techniques of being nice to guests if they receive good training and plenty of practical experience. If pleased guests leave the hotel with a good memory, they are likely to visit the hotel again.
- Some experts say that it is good to have an open kitchen. Do you agree with that?
Answer: I think it is a good idea to have an open kitchen. First, it can show the guest the cleanliness of the food. On the other hand, it may be a good way to attract guests, as people are usually very curious about how the delicious food is cooked. And cooking is also a kind of art for people to enjoy.
- What’s the attitude hotel staff should have when dealing with guests’ complaints?
Answer: Some complaints are serious and some are quite trivial, but the hotel staff should investigate them carefully. No matter how the guests behave, the hotel staff should always try to be nice to them. Don’t lose your temper on any occasion. Avoid arguing with the guests.
- If a guest wants to order some wine, but it seems that he /she is under 18 years old. What will you do then?
Answer: According to the law, only adults are allowed to drink wine or dine in the bar. If I am not sure about his / her age, I’ll ask in this way, “May I see your ID card?”. If he / she is under eighteen, I’ll advise him / her to order some soft drinks or juices instead.
- What is your own opinion of receiving tips? Please state your idea in your own words.
Answer: I think tips mean that the guest is satisfied with my job and service. And I know it is quite common in Western countries to accept a tip from a guest. If the policy permits, I would accept a tip in case the guest feels embarrassed.
- If you are going to attend a job interview for the position as a banquet server, what qualifications and personalities are you expected of?
Answer: To be a server in a banquet department, one should be helpful, cooperative, enthusiastic, patient and quick to learn. Meanwhile, one should have self-control, the ability to work under pressure and loyalty. If possible, I think, work experience is important, too.
- As a head server, how do you offer your service to your customers with a reservation after they are seated?
Answer: I will reconfirm the items in their reservation and ask them what they would like to have for their dinner and show them the menu for them to order, but I will also ask them for pre-dinner drinks and make some suggestions if possible. After I fetch the drink for them, I would leave for a while and return to take the order.
- Suppose you are the manager of F&B department. How do you handle the situation when a customer complains to you about a waitress who has spilt cheese sauce over him?
Answer: Firstly I would apologize to him politely and sincerely and pay for it to be cleaned immediately. Meanwhile I would offer a coffee on the house while he is waiting.
- You are required to send breakfast to Mr. White’s room. What should you do?
Answer: I would knock at the door and say, “ Room Service. May I come in? ”. When I get in the room I would ask him where I should place the breakfast and ask him to sign the bill before I leave politely.
- After the food is served, what would you do for your guests?
Answer: I would remind them that all the food is served, ask for their comments on the food and offer a plate of fruit as a gift to them.
- How do you serve beverages as a banquet server?
Answer: 1) Beverages are served according to the menu. 2) Service is proceeded always from the right side of the guest. 3) The bottle is kept in my right hand & the napkin in the left. 4) The bottle top is dried with the napkin after a guest is served. 5) The level of glasses is paid attention to accordingly.
- What do you think of reservation service in a hotel?
Answer: Reservation is a sub-division of F&B department. It concerns with all the outlets. The success of it really depends on how well the reservations department handles customer calls and whether or not it can convince guests to come to dine in the hotel restaurant.