The Restaurant

The Restaurant
Formal Dining

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Shoes and Uniforms

Many of my posts get a lot of hits, but strangely enough one of the most common ones is SHOES!
I suppose it makes sense because working in the restaurant takes a huge toll on your feet, ankles, knees, and back. It is hard work when you stand or walk on hard tile floors for 40+ hours a week.
Shoes are by far the most important part of your uniform. Everyone makes a work shoe or some kind of slip resistant shoe. You can get shoes from Wal-Mart or Payless to high end shoes like Birkenstock or SAS shoes. I believe you get what you pay for. Shoes for Crews, Saf-T-Step, and the like aren't the best. I recommend a solid work shoe from a company like Wolverine or Timberland.
I've written about it briefly, but I prefer Birkenstocks. They are a solid piece of rubber like material. Totally waterproof. They wash up easy and will take all kinds of abuse from sauces, oils, grease, gunk, and grime. They are slip resistant enough to keep me safe. They have arch support and removable insoles. They fit my wide foot really well and have a spacious toe box. There's not much worse than the feeling of smooshed toes at the end of a 12 hour day. The clogs don't have laces to fumble with and never come untied or anything of that nature. They really work well.
Most every uniform in the industry is different. Most will require black, slip-resistant shoes, in fact beware of any restaurant that tells you to wear whatever you want, not a good sign. You'll have to wear socks. You'd think that goes without saying but multiple times have I seen people without socks on. Depending on where you work you'll probably need to provide your own pants, again typically that will vary from restaurant to restaurant. At Domino's Pizza it seems like the employees are allowed to wear shorts, at Applebee's they were blue jeans, khakis at Dairy Queen, and black pants at Burger King. Dickies are a solid choice for work pants or shorts. Your manager will let you know what is accepted. You're generally provided a shirt, coat, or whatever the top is. Most places you'll be wearing a hat or visor, some require a hair net. It's a difficult topic to write on since so much is different between restaurants. There's not much of an industry standard. Jewelry and fake nails are generally frowned upon, but some places that's totally fine. There's just a very diverse world out there.

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