Speech 5: Persuasive

April 14, 2014

Kashetah Bedford

Intro into Public Speaking

Topic: The effect of mandatory tipping requirement on the service industry.

Audience: The intended audience is service industry leaders and consumers.

Title of Speech: Gratuity, a Bonus or Standard?

Specific Purpose of Speech: To persuade service industry leaders and consumers use the gratuity system as a reward for outstanding service not, as means to sublimit pay.


A little over a year ago, there was a tipping story that made headline news. After serving a table of 20 at Applebee’s the waitress presented the diners with the check. When she got it back the diner wrote above his signature that he was a pastor, and also wrote the words: “I give God 10%, why do you get 18?”

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Need step

Did you know, tips in the United States totals around $40 billion a year. Chain restaurants like Ihop pay their wait staff under minimum wage; because the logical is that they will make it up in tips. Jamie Martin, a former Ihop explained to me that she made $2.20 an hour. Each evening her tips were recorded. The tips earned were tallied into her paycheck and they how the company can justify paying its employees under minimum wage.


So where does tipping come from? Some say the word tip was first used in English bars and dining halls in the 18th Century. They would place a brass urns labeled with the phrase “To Insure Promptitude”.

By the 1900s some restaurant servers expected tips. In fact, on JBune 22, 1918, close to one hundred waiters were taken into custody for poisoning clients who did not tip enough in Chicago.

In countless bookstore and websites you can find publications and extensive charts developed by self-proclaimed tipping experts to ensure the consumer’s “tips appropriately”.

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Tim Urban of the site waitbutwhy.com wanted to take the confusion out of tipping developed this chart.

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This is an example of automatic gratuity.

Transition So how do we fix this problem?

The website Seriouseats.com reported on a New York Times story on Phoebe Damrosch, the author of Service Included: Four-Star Secrets of an Eavesdropping Waiter.

Under our current system, servers work for tips and not their wages or customer satisfaction.

In New York, there is a growing list of restaurants do not take tips. Customers don’t have to fret over how much to add to the bill, because the waiters won’t accept tips.

Personal experienceMy family lived in Japan for 3 years and I cannot tell you how wonderful of an experience it was to dine a local restaurant, receive 5 star serve and not have worry about leaving a proper tip. They will not accept it. If fact, if you attempt to leave money on the table, the server will return it and if they means chasing you down the street then so be it.

According to columnist Alice Robb, defenders of tipping, argue that it give waiters an incentive to provide good service. But over the years, research has shown that what customers actually reward often does not have much to do with the service.


So what are your thoughts? Should gratuity be a bonus or standard practice? If you still feel it should be standard practice consider this… how often have you gone out for dinner and felt the service was amazing, but the food was subpar?