The One Argument Against Tipping That Actually Makes Sense (VIDEO)

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waitressWhen it comes to tipping, there's the decent people who do it, and the jerks who don't. Right? I mean, we all have our own reasons for tipping at restaurants, but they all pretty much amount to the same thing: It's the "right" thing to do. But what if it's not? What if it turns out that tipping is (gulp!) unfair?!?

A former restaurant owner says we need to totally rethink tipping. Bruce McAdams has done just about every job you can do at a restaurant: He's cooked, waited tables, bussed, managed, and owned them. And after years of experience, he's concluded that tipping is just plain unfair. And you know what? His argument makes sense.

If you have time, McAdams' whole TEDx Talk is thought-provoking. But one of the main points he makes is that tipping is unfair to the cooks and everyone else working at a restaurant besides the servers. When you factor in tips, servers make WAY more than cooks do. And a lot of those cooks spend years and tens of thousands of dollars at cooking school. They work just as hard. But they make peanuts compared to the waiters.

More from The Stir: Waitresses Who Wear Red Score Bigger Tips From Men

So what -- should we be tipping the cooks, too? McAdams doesn't really offer solutions for solving this. But he does mention that some restaurants actually collect the tips and divide them evenly among the entire restaurant staff. So there's an idea! Would you tip differently if you knew your tips would be shared with the dishwasher?

Eh, probably not. Here's the other thing McAdams says -- study after study proves that except in extreme cases, we don't tip based on performance, anyway. Most of us tip based on whatever we usually tip.

So what's the point?!? What if we said "no more tipping!" and just raised everyone's restaurant bill by 15 to 20 percent? Then the owner could decide where all the money goes, hopefully fairly -- ugh, if only restaurant profit margins weren't so teeny. But that's probably never going to happen. Still, I will ponder this the next time I eat out ... just before I sign my name under that same tip I give every damn time no matter what the service was like.

Do you think tipping is unfair to the rest of the restaurant staff?

 

Image via bradleyolin/Flickr

eating out, restaurants

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dusky... dusky_rose

We usually at least tip 10%. I'm not sure what the laws are here in Washington state, so I don't know what to think about his comments. And some restaurants add a tip to the bill, so if you eat there, you are already tipping what they want you to (whatever percentage).

James... Jameson007

When I was in college I waited tables and I tipped out 35% of my tips. Cook, host, busser, &dish washer were all those who I felt deserved to be tipped. By doing this I also received the best tables, quickest food, and it created a great team atmosphere. Unfortunately this man is trying to put a generalized idea that only fits a tiny minority of businesses.

nonmember avatar Erin

I was a server for over 10 years and I have worked at many different places. The one thing constant was that I made 2.13 an hour plus tips...those tips then had to also tip out hostess,busboy,and food runners...not an issue IF they would actually do their job. Most didn't BC they knew they wld get part of our tips no matter what. And cooks have all made above minimum wage while everyone else but servers got at least minimum wage. So no its not fair to split evenly...dont do your job you don't get tipped! Simple asvthat

nonmember avatar Erin

I was a server for over 10 years and I have worked at many different places. The one thing constant was that I made 2.13 an hour plus tips...those tips then had to also tip out hostess,busboy,and food runners...not an issue IF they would actually do their job. Most didn't BC they knew they wld get part of our tips no matter what. And cooks have all made above minimum wage while everyone else but servers got at least minimum wage. So no its not fair to split evenly...dont do your job you don't get tipped! Simple as that.

Reepi... Reepicheep.CSL

I would NOT be impressed if they upped my bill by any %. I will tip based on service and personality. I usually tip much more than 20% but I reserve the right to not tip at all for horrible service or bad food!

Happy... Happydad73

If it is bad service, there will be a reduced tip. End of story. If you aren't making min wage and you NEED those tips as part of your salary, you better step up to the plate and give good service. If you don't like it, try washing windows or mowing lawns and stop whining.

jagam... jagamama0710

The real solution is to pay servers an actual wage that way tipping is what it's supposed to be and people actually have to earn them, not just expect them regardless because it's "required" by society. 


(And that's coming from someone who tips well)

elasmimi elasmimi

Never really thought about it that way, but they really need to pay servers more anyway.

Beth3721 Beth3721

I've known a lot of waitresses that get paid minimum wage along with tips.  I tip because it is customary and expected.  But at the same time I feel a little put off by the whole idea.  I do a service for customers all day long behind the scenes.  I don't talk to customers or serve them things, but I play vital role in getting them the exact product they are looking for. 


I don't get tips for doing my job, and I'm sure there are a heck of alot of other people that feel the same way I do.

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