17 Dining Room Supervisor Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a dining room supervisor, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

A dining room supervisor is responsible for the overall operations of a restaurant’s dining room. This includes supervising the waitstaff, coordinating with the kitchen staff, and ensuring that the dining room is clean and presentable.

If you’re applying for a dining room supervisor position, you can expect to be asked a variety of questions about your experience, skills, and qualifications. In this guide, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most common dining room supervisor interview questions, along with sample answers to help you prepare for your interview.

Are you comfortable giving constructive feedback to your staff members?

As a supervisor, you may need to give constructive feedback to your staff members from time to time. Employers ask this question to make sure that you are comfortable doing so and can do it in a way that is helpful for the employee receiving the feedback. In your answer, explain that you understand how important it is to receive constructive feedback and will be able to provide it in a positive and helpful manner.

Example: “I am very comfortable giving constructive feedback to my staff members. I know that sometimes we all need help improving our skills or behaviors, and I enjoy helping my team members learn and grow. I also think it’s important to always start out any conversation with praise before getting into the constructive feedback. This helps soften the mood and makes people more receptive to what I have to say.”

What are some methods you use to motivate your team?

Motivation is an important skill for a dining room supervisor to have. Employers ask this question to see if you can motivate your team members and help them perform their best. When answering this question, think about the methods you use to motivate yourself and others. Try to find examples of how you motivated someone else in the past.

Example: “I believe that motivation comes from within. I try to inspire my team by setting a good example. If I am working hard and doing my job well, it’s easier for me to encourage others to do the same. In the past, I’ve also used positive reinforcement to motivate my team. For instance, when servers did something well, I would give them a small bonus or praise them in front of everyone.”

How would you handle a situation where a customer is unhappy with their food or service?

An interviewer may ask this question to assess your customer service skills. They want to know how you would handle a situation that could potentially damage the reputation of their restaurant. In your answer, try to emphasize your ability to empathize with customers and resolve issues quickly.

Example: “If a customer is unhappy with their food or service, I always make sure to apologize for their experience and offer them a replacement meal or discount on their bill. If they are still unsatisfied, I will do everything in my power to make things right. For example, if a customer was served cold soup at dinner, I would take care of the issue by offering them another bowl of soup or a new entrée. If they were still unsatisfied after that, I would give them a full refund.”

What is your experience with hiring and training new employees?

Hiring and training new employees is an important part of being a dining room supervisor. Employers ask this question to make sure you have experience with hiring and training staff members. Use your answer to explain how you would go about the hiring process if you were hired for this role. Explain what steps you would take to ensure that all new hires are trained properly.

Example: “I’ve had some experience with hiring new employees in my previous roles as a server and bartender. I find that it’s best to hire people who already know the basics of their job. For example, when I was looking for servers, I only interviewed candidates who had at least two years of experience serving tables. This helped me avoid having to train someone from scratch.

When interviewing potential employees, I also like to see how they interact with customers. I think it’s important for servers to be friendly and outgoing. It shows me that they can handle pressure situations and work well with others. When I’m ready to hire someone, I always give them a trial run first. I want to make sure they’re a good fit before making the decision to hire them.”

Provide an example of a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer.

Employers ask this question to see how you handle stressful situations. They want to know that you can remain calm and professional when faced with a challenging customer. In your answer, try to focus on the steps you took to resolve the situation.

Example: “In my previous role as dining room supervisor, I had a regular customer who was very rude to our wait staff. The customer would often complain about their food or service, even if it wasn’t warranted. One day, the customer complained about their meal again. I went over to speak with them and let them know that we were happy to replace their meal. However, they refused to accept it. Instead, they wanted me to give them a discount on their bill. I politely declined and told them that we couldn’t offer any further discounts. After speaking with them, they agreed to take the replacement meal.”

If hired, what would be your strategies for keeping up with the latest trends in the food and beverage industry?

Employers ask this question to make sure you’re committed to keeping your skills and knowledge up-to-date. Use your answer to show the interviewer that you have a passion for food and beverage service and are willing to learn new things.

Example: “I’m passionate about food and beverage, so I love learning about new trends in the industry. I subscribe to several newsletters and blogs where I can find out about the latest developments in the field. I also take online courses on topics like wine tasting and pairing different foods with wines. I think it’s important to stay current because it helps me provide better service to my customers.”

What would you do if you noticed that a server was not following proper food safety procedures?

The interviewer may ask you a question like this to assess your leadership skills and how you would handle an employee who is not following company policies. In your answer, try to show that you value food safety and are willing to hold your team members accountable for their actions.

Example: “If I noticed that a server was not following proper food safety procedures, I would first speak with them privately about the issue. If they were unable to follow the policy after our conversation, I would document the incident in my notes and inform my manager of the situation so that we could discuss appropriate disciplinary action. As a leader, it’s important to me that all employees feel comfortable coming to us with any issues or concerns.”

How well do you handle stress?

Working in a restaurant can be stressful, especially if you’re managing a large dining room. Employers ask this question to make sure you have the ability to handle stress and remain calm when things get hectic. In your answer, share how you manage stress and give an example of a time you did so successfully.

Example: “I think it’s important to take a few deep breaths whenever I feel stressed. This helps me relax and regain my focus. When I was working as a server, I had a table that was very demanding. The couple wanted everything exactly the way they liked it, which made it challenging for me to keep up with their requests. After taking some deep breaths, I was able to refocus on what they needed and deliver excellent service.”

Do you have any questions for us about the dining room supervisor position?

Employers often ask this question to see if you have done your research on the company and position. Before your interview, make a list of questions that you can ask the employer. This shows them that you are genuinely interested in the job and want to learn more about it. When asking questions, try to focus on learning more about the role itself rather than what benefits the job offers.

Example: “I am very excited about this opportunity and would love to work for this restaurant chain. I noticed that there is an annual performance review process here, which I think is great because it gives employees feedback on how they can improve their skills. My only question is what type of training opportunities do you offer? I am always looking for ways to grow my skills as a dining room supervisor.”

When planning shifts, what approach do you take to ensure that you have enough staff members on hand at all times?

The interviewer may ask you this question to understand how you plan and organize your team’s schedules. Use your answer to highlight your time management skills, ability to prioritize tasks and organizational abilities.

Example: “I take a strategic approach when planning my staff’s shifts. I first look at the number of reservations we have for each day and then determine which days are busier than others. From there, I assign servers to specific shifts based on their availability and skill level. This allows me to ensure that all tables receive excellent service while also ensuring that our servers get enough breaks throughout their shift.”

We want to improve our customer service. If you were hired, what would be the first thing you would do to improve our customer experience?

This question is a great way to determine how the candidate plans to improve your restaurant’s customer service. It also shows that you’re looking for someone who can make improvements and implement new ideas. Your answer should show that you have specific ways of improving customer service, such as by training employees or implementing new policies.

Example: “The first thing I would do if I were hired is hold a meeting with all dining room staff members. During this meeting, I would explain what our goals are for providing excellent customer service. I would then give them some tips on how they can provide better service to customers. For example, I would tell them to greet customers when they arrive at their table and ask them how their day is going. This small gesture can go a long way in making customers feel welcome.”

Describe your experience with using POS systems.

The interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your experience using technology in the workplace. Use your answer to highlight your comfort level with computers and other technological devices. You can also use this opportunity to explain any previous POS system experience you have.

Example: “I’ve used a variety of POS systems throughout my career, including those that are integrated with inventory management software. I find these systems very helpful because they allow me to keep track of customer orders while also monitoring how many servers we have on the floor at any given time. This helps me ensure that our customers receive their food quickly and efficiently.”

What makes you the best candidate for this dining room supervisor position?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your qualifications for the job. They want someone who is passionate, hardworking and eager to take on new challenges. When you answer this question, make sure to highlight your relevant skills and experience. You can also share a story that shows how you would be an excellent fit for the role.

Example: “I am the best candidate for this position because I have extensive experience working in dining rooms. In my last role as a server, I learned how to work with large groups of people. I know how to manage stress and keep everyone happy. I also understand the importance of following company policies and procedures. These skills make me the perfect person for this role.”

Which restaurant chains have you worked for in the past?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your experience and how it relates to the position you’re interviewing for. When answering, be sure to mention a few of the restaurants you’ve worked at in the past that are similar to the one you’re applying to. This can help show the interviewer that you have relevant experience.

Example: “In my last role as dining room supervisor, I was responsible for overseeing all aspects of the dining room at a local restaurant chain. In previous roles, however, I’ve also worked at family-style restaurants and fine dining establishments. These experiences helped me develop skills that make me well suited for this position.”

What do you think is the most important trait for a dining room supervisor to have?

This question can help an interviewer determine if you have the skills and abilities they’re looking for in a dining room supervisor. When answering this question, it can be helpful to mention a trait that you feel strongly about and explain why it’s important.

Example: “I think one of the most important traits for a dining room supervisor is being able to remain calm under pressure. In my experience as a server, I’ve seen how effective a leader who stays calm can be on their team members. It helps them stay focused and gives other employees something to look up to. If I were ever promoted to a dining room supervisor position, I would make sure to model this behavior so that my team could learn from me.”

How often do you perform food safety checks on your staff members?

The interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your leadership style and how you ensure the safety of customers. Your answer should include a specific example of when you performed food safety checks on your staff members, as well as what actions you took if any violations were found.

Example: “I perform food safety checks at least once per shift with each new employee. I also check in with my team throughout their shifts to make sure they’re following proper procedures. In one instance, I noticed that an employee was not washing her hands before handling food. I asked her why she wasn’t doing so, and she told me she forgot. After reminding her of the importance of hand-washing, I checked back in with her later in the evening to make sure she remembered.”

There is a problem with the food that a guest ordered. How would you handle this situation?

The interviewer may ask you a question like this to assess your customer service skills. This is an opportunity for you to show that you can be helpful and empathetic when dealing with customers. In your answer, try to emphasize how important it is to make the customer happy while also maintaining high standards of quality in food preparation.

Example: “If there was a problem with a guest’s meal, I would first apologize to them and explain what happened. Then, I would offer them another dish or a discount on their meal. If they are still unsatisfied, I would find out if there is anything else we could do to make them happy.”


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