Question: The holidays are here and I am already getting questions from my staff about tips. What kind of tipping policy do you recommend? Should the employees be able to keep them, or pool them?
Answer: This question comes up every year, and it’s a tricky one. Both allowing employees to accept tips, and pooling all of the tips for a group party or distribution work well. Of course, pooling is less competitive, but may not adequately reward those that have put in the outstanding efforts. Whichever you decide, make a policy that sticks from year to year, so that the issue does not come up again. Here are two policies that you could use.
Tipping – On occasion our clients may leave tips for excellent service, or a holiday “thank you”. Client tips are not expected, and entirely optional. Employees are not to request or solicit tips from his/her clients. In the event that a tip is given for excellent service, the tip will be given to the team that performed that service. In the event that a holiday tip is given, the tip will be given to the team that is regularly assigned to that client. If it is unclear if a tip was given for a holiday “thank you”, or excellent service, and there is more than one cleaning team servicing the client, management will determine who the tip is to be given to.