Friday, May 20, 2011

Keep The Change

By Daniel Ricciardi

      "Norms are the specific cultural expectations for how to behave in a given situation."

In today’s society, we have tons of social norms.  Whether the norm is to text message, or tipping at a restaurant, it is part of who we are as a culture.  For example, every person under at least thirty years of age know how to text.  Norms are the way we are, the way we live, and what makes us what we are today. One norm I am going to breakdown is tipping at a restaurant.

Have you ever eaten at a restaurant and didn’t leave a tip?  Have you ever just paid the exact amount on the bill without giving any more or any less?  In today’s society, when you go out to a restaurant, majority of the time, you leave a tip without even thinking.  Tipping in a restaurant has become the proper thing to do.  Obviously there have been times where we barely leave anything because of bad service.  There has also been a time when you may have given a little extra, due to the kindness of the service. Tips are greatly appreciated, especially in our society.  Not every society tips in restaurants.  Many other countries have different cultural traditions, and they just respect the food.  In the United States, and in our society, we tip at restaurants.

I have been working in a restaurant for close to four years now.  I work hard, and it pays for some of my college. At my job, we make sure we go above and beyond to make sure that every customer is completely satisfied with their meal, and their service.  The better the service is, being honest, the more tips we make.  As customers, we have to remember that the people taking care of us at the restaurant, also has to earn a living.  There were times when tipping wasn’t “automatic”.  Instead, people would only tip when they wanted to.  Now, it is proper etiquette to tip.  Naturally in certain places, tips will be higher than others, but it is the thought that makes it special. 

We cannot forget the times when we tipped because we wanted to, not because it was implied.  As a restaurant employee, nothing makes me feel better about myself than when someone hands me a side-tip.  Sure, that person knows that I receive a percentage at the end of the night.  The person realizes that I went above and beyond for their every need, and felt I deserved a little extra.  I am trying not to sound money hungry, but as a society, we have to tip accordingly.  If the service is bad, we could leave a small tip, and vice versa.  Tipping is optional, but implied, yet very important to the workers.  Restaurant workers make nearly no salary, because the tip outs that they receive at the end of the night.  Social Norms covers so many things, that it is a very broad topic.  We as customers must learn to appreciate what people in restaurants do, and tip out of respect, and thankfulness.  Do you tip at restaurants?  If so, what percentage do you use?  Does anyone work or have worked in a restaurant? If so, back this norm up.


  1. Great example while promoting the cause! Clear and thorough, easy to follow. Tipping should be mandatory :)

  2. Having also worked in the restaurant industry, I understand where most servers are coming from when they receive a poor tip for good service. As a consumer, I also understand the desire to not tip based on poor service. However, the reality of the industry, here in America at least, is that the majority of servers don't make a decent salary and depend heavily on their tips as a source of income.

    With that said, I will never NOT tip. However, the amount in which I tip does depend on the service I receive.

  3. Gilberte Charles.May 20, 2011 at 9:36 PM

    what about the people how does'nt have no money. take me for example, i go at the restaurant sometimes to make myself happy. i don't have a job. im only doing work study and i only have 15hr every week. the money i have its always only for the food i orders. i never money for can always expect the customer to give you tips.

  4. I agree with Daniel Ricciardi that according to the textbook "the norms are the specific cultural expectations for how to act in a given situation". People should to follow to the common social norms, that exist in their society. But author example show to us more common tradition (tips in an restaurant) that take place in our country and few others, but not for everywhere. Moreover people who break down this norm do not carry any punishment other than condemnation and resentment from the serve staff restaurant. While people who violate rules and laws of country can be punished as administrative as and criminal.
    However, in my opinion payment of tips can not considered the social norm. I think it can be a prerequisite for tax evasion, and opportunities for employer (restaurant owner) to pay lower wages to their employees, citing the tips.
    We do not pay tips assistant of teacher in a kindergarten or a cashier in a store, even though their salaries are no more than a waiter or bartender in a restaurant.
    Many people simply can not pay the tip, as they do not work or earn low wages, they pay only the amount according to the receipt. Why in this case, the waiter has to keep resentment at the client.
    Of course I leave a tip, as required by the custom of this country, but I do not agree that the tips in the restaurant should considered as a social norm.
    In general, the post is created very well, confirmed the picture, but an example involves us to argumentative.

  5. I also want to include, that in some restaurants there are inner house tipping systems. In this industry, sometimes there are bartenders, hosts,and bus peoeple that also get tips as part of there compensation. These tips are coming out of the hard working apron of YOUR server.The tips that servers have to give to the staff working for them comes from a percentaage of there own tips, So keep in mind that when the customer does not leave a tip, the server has to reach into her own pocket to cover the inner costs of thr restaurant, that the customer did not leaave. When this happens the server then actually looses money.

  6. Deborah CrawfordMay 28, 2011 at 12:51 PM

    I do tip without even noticing. Its just the uusual. I like the topic.