Our economy has been fodder for many a conversation and debate. Companies are closing. Executives are working jobs beneath their qualifications. People are coming up with creative ways to enhance revenue streams.
Employers have long used tipping to augment income. Some even reduce the employees' wages, expecting clients will make up the difference with tips. An additional benefit tipping provides is a built-in incentive program: it rewards employees who provide superior customer service.
What are the criteria for tipping? Do the criteria change with shifting economic tides?
What service providers do you tip: hair dresser, masseuse, bellhop, taxi driver, spa service (waxing, facial)? What about at restaurants - do you tip for eat-in, take-out, drive-thru, stalls at drive-ins? Why do we tip these professions and not others?
How much do you tip: 10 percent, 20 percent? Does the tip depend on which service provider you are tipping? Perhaps a hair dresser gets a lower percentage tip than a waiter. Do you use a sliding scale depending on how good the service was?
At a restaurant, our family tips perfect service at 20 percent. We base 10 percent on technique (how long does my glass stay empty, how is our meal paced) and the other 10 percent on attitude (do they act pleased to serve or do they act like they are being inconvenienced?). I know someone who doesn't tip when he goes out of town. His rationale: he will never see that service person again.
How has the economy affected your company's compensation program? Does your employer use creative revenue enhancement?