3 Tips for Dealing with Aggressive Guests

Posted on October 9, 2017 by

If you have a bar in your restaurant, you’ve surely encountered an aggressive guest before. Occasionally, guests just don’t know when to stop—so it’s up to restaurant staff to help manage them and keep everybody safe.

Since our focus is safety, we want to give you three tips, about training, to better help your employees manage guests, prevent situations that can lead to trouble, and keep the reputation of your restaurant and bar as one that is safe and secure.

1. Have a Security Plan for Aggressive Guests


First things first, your restaurant needs a plan for how to handle aggressive guests. This should be a part of your policies and procedures in your restaurant and should be an integral part of training all your employees, not just bartenders.

A security plan should include:

  • A chain of command for dealing with an aggressive guest
  • What measures should be taken for dealing with a guest who is aggressive
  • How to safely and quietly move other guests away from the situation
  • How to handle your reputation on social media

( Click here to read more about alcohol safety.)

2. Refresh Training on Alcohol Safety


When it comes to alcohol safety, we have a few pieces of training we consider to be the most important. These pieces of training should be some of the first you introduce to your bartenders and also ones that you refresh as frequently as possible.

Here are the pieces you should refresh at the start of every new season, but especially around the holidays.

  • The Signs of Intoxication
  • How to Check IDs
  • The Security Plan for Dealing with Aggressive Guests
  • Travel Plans for Intoxicated Guests

( Click here to read more of our tips about keeping your restaurant safe.)

3. Train Employees to Stay Calm


The number one tip we can give bartenders (and all employees) about dealing with overly aggressive, potentially intoxicated guests is to stay calm. It is easier said than done, but including it in your training, and reminding them that you have a plan and that you always have their back when it comes to dealing with difficult guests, is a big step to ensuring it happens.

Establishing a chain of command, and having a plan for employees to follow, also goes a long way to making sure they remain calm and that an aggressive, emotional situation does not escalate.

( Click here to read about implementing an alcohol policy.)