FOREWORD: Some years ago, I worked the door with a very talented security staffer. He had a great demeanor, an excellent sense of humor, and above all, he did his job VERY well. His usual response to foolish behavior would be to give the troublemaker a look, as if he was saying, “Does that really seem like a good idea?” It didn’t hurt that he was also rather large and had a strong background in martial arts.
On many of the nights that we worked, we would spend a lot of time laughing at the general misbehavior of the Staff, Patrons, and the clients of the liquor store across the street. This misbehavior and its generally ridiculous consequences were what we dubbed, in the most satirical terms possible: “The Majesty”. “Majestic” behavior could entail everything from a Patron falling down on the street to a bartender getting too drunk behind the bar to do their job. To this day, “The Majesty” still remains in our lingo. As a matter of fact, it was almost the original name of this blog.
And so, I dedicate this post to The Chief. Enjoy…
Quick quiz. Who is the:
Coolest Doorman in Your Town?
The Drunkest Bartender in Your Town?
The Security Staffer from which you can buy drugs in Your Town?
The Bouncer who’s won the Most Fights in Your Town?
Is it a good or bad thing that you can answer these questions? I suppose that it is all a matter of perspective. If you are the person answering the questions, I would venture a guess that you either spend way too much of your spare time going out or you work in the Industry. If you work in the Industry, how does the fact that you can answer those questions make you feel as a PROFESSIONAL?
You see, in this Industry, there are many, many, many opportunities for the lines between your PROFESSIONAL and your PERSONAL lives to cross. The questions really is, “How, When, and Should you allow them to cross?” In all honestly, I am not here to answer that question, but instead to give a little insight and explain why you should keep them crossover to a minimum.
In our last post, Will Norton made an excellent point when he said, “I come in to work every night; this is a job”. This IS your job and as a – hopefully – responsible adult, I would hope that you take it as such. To this end, acting as a responsible, hard working adult would mean doing your job and nothing more. But how does that reconcile with the fact that this is an Industry that thrives on good times, copious amounts of alcohol (and let’s be honest, oftentimes drugs), and some blurred lines when it comes to “adult” behavior? Well, it doesn’t. You can either be a part of “The Majesty” or not.
If you decide to be a part of “The Majesty” you have to take the following into consideration:
Your reputation will follow you.
Not only through the job world, but in public. If you act like a fool, you will be known for acting like a fool – in the “real” world and at work. If you deal drugs, people will know that you deal drugs – in the “real” world and at work. If you hook up with your clients, people will know that you hook up with your clients… I think you get the picture.
How you behave at your workplace is not just a reflection of you. It is a reflection of your workplace. Everyone likes to have fun and you should be having fun in a bar. But do you want to be known as “the bar with the drunkest bartenders”? How about “the bar with the coolest bouncers because they’ll let you in with a fake I.D.” Do you see where I’m heading with this? Everyone loves the bar where you can get blacked out drunk and slide by with a fake I.D….until the Patrons start feeling unsafe because “everyone is always wasted” or it gets closed down for taking fake I.D.’s.*
Not only does your behavior IN the bar count, your behavior OUTSIDE counts as well. If you are constantly partying in other bars, acting rude, getting into fights, passing out on curbs…it will follow you. “Hey, isn’t that so and so, from such and such bar?” Yeah, it happens. Now you’ve made a reputation for yourself…and your bar by proxy.
So how do you avoid “The Majesty”? Quite honestly, I’m not sure that I should be the one telling you how. It is up to YOU to decide how you want to portray yourself and your place of employment. What is the reputation that you want? How long do you think you can last as the Coolest/Drunkest/Toughest/Sexiest? And what is the end result of that? The one thing that you should keep in mind is that the world of the nightclub is a series of revolving doors: new people, new clients, new management, new employees come through those doors all the time. What IS your reputation? And do you want THAT reputation to be the first thing that greets them when they arrive?
I’m sure that I’ll get a lot of blowblack from this post, mostly in the form of, “Oh, you’re too old. You don’t get it anymore.” or “Dude, you need to lighten up.” Maybe, maybe not. I personally would rather be old and professional than old and have a questionable reputation. But that’s just me, I suppose.
Until next time…
* In the interest of full disclosure, I was always (and am sometime still) known as the “Bouncer who will give you a hard time for having fun” a.k.a the one actually doing his job. There are still people who dislike me for kicking them out of bars, not letting them into bars, or getting them arrested. I can deal with that. Why? Because I was doing my job. And my job is to keep you, the bar, and the general public safe. Did that mean that sometimes I “ruined” someone’s night? Possibly. If by “ruined” you mean “kicking you out of the bar and out of jail for being overintoxicated.”