Five People Skills That Will Help You Make
the Perfect Cocktails for Your Customers

See also: Charisma

To be a fantastic cocktail bartender, you not only need to make perfect cocktails for your customers time and time again.

You also need to have the right people skills to provide quality service and ensure your customers are happy and come back again and again.

Having excellent people skills will also help you to enjoy your work more.

So, what are you waiting for? Get started by learning the following five people skills all cocktail creators should have.

Line of cocktails on a bar.

1. Provide Quality Customer Service

Providing excellent customer service is a crucial people skill that you need to master as a bartender serving cocktails.

You need to maintain a professional manner, but you should also be friendly and chatty. 

Smiling and making eye contact with customers is one of the most important elements of good customer service. 

You also need to demonstrate that you’re confident in handling the glassware and equipment so that your customers gain trust and can see how professional you are in cocktail creation. 

To enhance your customer service further:

  • Learn how to read your customers so that you can tailor your style of service and recommend the right drinks for each customer.

  • Take pride in your personal appearance, as first impressions matter.

  • Learn how your body language can affect customers’ perceptions of you. For instance, by using open body language, such as hand gestures, you can appear more approachable to customers.

  • Approach customers to ask them how their drinks are after you have served them.

  • Consider how all your movements look from the customers’ perspective.

2. Learn More About Creating Cocktails So You Can Provide In-depth Knowledge and Service to Your Customers

How can you provide customers with excellent service if you don’t know your product inside out?

People skills as a cocktail bartender include needing to be able to answer any questions customers may have about drinks. Therefore, you should have in-depth knowledge of the creation of each cocktail you sell.

Also, as The Untappd Lounge guide to cocktails states, you should know which glasses to use for different cocktails.

For instance, some cocktails’ appearance and taste can be enhanced when you use the right glasses. Selecting the right drinkware for a cocktail can also boost a drink’s aroma and keep it at the right temperature.

So, using the right cocktail glasses is more important than you may think.

When you continually learn about cocktail making, you’ll possess the in-depth knowledge you need to provide quality customer service and answer any questions that customers could have.

And when you have expert knowledge, you can also recommend cocktails to customers, point out any unique features and ingredients, talk about a brand’s heritage, and upsell.

Learn more about upselling with these tips and examples.

3. Ensure Your Service Is Speedy and Efficient

Customers don’t want to wait for ages for their cocktails to be served, so ensure your speed of service is as quick as possible.

Also, make sure you know which customers are first in line so that you don’t cause patiently waiting customers to become frustrated.

Over time, your speed and movements will improve and become second nature, but when you first begin working as a cocktail maker, you need to actively speed up your processes to ensure customers remain happy.

Being organised and efficient will help you to speed up processes. For instance, having all of the equipment you need within arm’s reach can significantly help you to create cocktails and serve customers faster.

So, prep the bar in a way that will help you work more efficiently. Consider using a checklist to ensure all equipment is in place, too.

Other ways of increasing speed and efficiency include:

  • Using both hands at once.
  • Having a set procedure for the way in which you prepare individual cocktails and rounds of cocktails.
  • Tidying up as you go and putting everything back in its place when you’re finished.

4. Provide a Personalised Service

To enhance your people skills further, offer a more personalised service.

That includes doing things like anticipating the arrival of new customers by facing the door, so that you can be ready and create a great first impression as soon as people enter your establishment, providing drinks menus as soon as customers are seated, and making frequent checks to see if your customers require anything else.

You should always provide a personalised service, which means you also need to remember to thank customers as they leave and wish them a fond farewell.

By knowing what your customers think about you, you can take appropriate steps to further enhance your customer service and provide a more personal service.

When customers feel appreciated and special, they’re much more likely to return.

5. Learn How to Improve Your Memory and Your Multitasking Skills

Maintaining excellent people skills at the same time as remembering long and complicated orders in a high-pressure environment is easier said than done.

So, learn how to remember complex orders and long names of cocktails, and improve your multitasking skills so that you can still smile at your customers and chat to them in a friendly way that doesn’t give away the pressure, stress, or tiredness that you’re feeling inwardly.

Basically, you need to improve your memory and your multitasking skills in order to provide the best people skills to your customers.

The Takeaway

When people go out to drink cocktails, they’re not only looking for a variety of tasty beverages. They’re also looking for great customer service and a smiling and friendly bartender.

As a professional cocktail maker, it’s your job to be informative about the drinks you create and provide your customers with high-quality service.

In addition to basic social skills like remembering to smile, chat, and maintain professionalism, you can ensure customers are happy and encourage repeat custom, and thereby maximise sales, by:

  • Learning more about cocktail creation so that you can answer customer questions and provide recommendations.
  • Ensuring your service is speedy and efficient.
  • Providing a personalised service.
  • Improving your memory and multitasking skills.

It can take time to master all of those key elements. But when you do, your people skills will help you to provide great service and make the perfect cocktails for your customers.

About the Author

Cristina Par is a content specialist with a passion for writing articles that bridge the gap between brands and their audiences. She believes that high-quality content plus the right link building strategies can turn the tables for businesses small and large.