Managers and lead servers can help their staff learn to upsell by following these suggestions:
- Allow servers to taste menu items. Provide opportunities for servers to taste menu items, including daily specials.
- Train in Menu Knowledge. Make menu knowledge a priority, so servers can speak intelligently about the preparation and quality of food.
- Suggest Vivid Descriptions. Offer ideas for how to use colorful language when describing dishes. For example, avoid simply offering "a slice of chocolate pie" and instead upsell "an exquisite slice of delicate chocolate lousse pie with a drizzle of caramel." It makes a big difference.
- Role-play with Servers. Role-play with servers to demonstrate how to ask questions or offer more items.
- Provide Rewards. Hold contests and offer incentives for servers who sell the most dessert or daily special, giving food or gift cards as prizes.