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7 Strict Rules Texas Roadhouse Workers Have to Follow

Smiling and upselling are the name of the Texas Roadhouse game.
FACT CHECKED BY Meaghan Cameron

Over 650 Texas Roadhouse locations in the U.S. In fact, you can find at least one Texas Roadhouse restaurant in every state except Hawaii. Over 5,000 guests a week are served at these locations. With those dozens of locations and thousands of customers come hundreds of workers willing to line dance and take your order for mouthwatering steaks. One of Texas Roadhouse's keys to success is amazing customer service so the chain naturally has some strict rules that workers, servers in particular, need to follow.

Why is the chain so successful? Part of it is the food, of course. People love the hand-cut steaks, the famous bread served with honey-cinnamon butter, and the creative cocktails. Plus, they love the fact that the food and beverage prices at the chain tend to be competitively low.

In addition, fans love the environment at Texas Roadhouse, where things are fun and laid back. That environment is created in part by each restaurant's Texas-themed décor, but if you've been to a Texas Roadhouse, you know it's also largely due to the employees, who are bright, warm, and welcoming to all.

Why is such a sunny disposition the norm for Texas Roadhouse servers? Well, it's required, for starters. And so are these other rules that Texas Roadhouse servers are expected to follow.

Customers Are Flocking to Texas Roadhouse In Record Numbers—Here's Why

You must repeat orders to your guests multiple times


According to a training manual that was published online, part of being a server at Texas Roadhouse includes repeating everything back to the guest to ensure the order is right. "Incorrect orders will have a huge impact on food cost so make sure to get it right," said the manual. Effective order management has been a huge piece of the puzzle for such a busy restaurant. It can decrease the amount of time customers are waiting for their food and allow the restaurant to serve more customers.

Texas Roadhouse execs also credit top-notch order management and Roadhouse Pay, which allows guests to pay on a tablet at the table, with several record-breaking weeks at the beginning of this year. "We really look at from a technology standpoint, any piece that can help the speed of our restaurants which obviously increases the traffic growth," Gina Tobin, newly named president of the chain said.

Line dancing is required

line dancing

Having a bad day in your personal life and doing your best to get through your shift serving at Texas Roadhouse with at least a half-smile on your face? That's unfortunate for you if the music starts playing, because line dancing is required of all servers, bad day or not. (And regardless of whether or not you hate line dancing.) According to a Reddit thread, not only are servers required to line dance at certain times, they are often monitored by secret shoppers to ensure compliance.

Servers must greet new guests with a corny script

texas roadhouse employees
Texas Roadhouse Careers

According to Quizlet, any server who is addressing a table of diners new to them must inquire if they have been to the restaurant before and, if not, must recite a script that reads in part: "Well howdy there, we're so excited to have y'all here for the first of hopefully many times to come! I do have to tell you all about the best hand-cut steaks in town, not to mention our award-winning fall-off-the-bone ribs, and my personal favorite, the fresh-out-of-the-oven bread served with our creamy honey cinnamon butter, as well as all of our made-from-scratch side items and dressings, and last but not least our refreshing ice-cold beers and legendary margaritas!"

Servers must upsell

texas roadhouse
Texas Roadhouse / Facebook

When you order a steak at a Texas Roadhouse, your server will ask how you want it cooked, of course, but they will also invariably ask if you want to add cooked mushrooms and onions. Why? Not because these add-ons will improve the taste all that much, but because they are cheap for the restaurant but can represent small but significant increases to your overall bill. You may very well want the cooked mushrooms and onions, but just know that your server is asking because he or she is required to do so.

Shirts must be tucked in at all times when a server is on the property

texas roadhouse server
Texas Roadhouse / Twitter

According to a Texas Roadhouse training manual, the uniform employees must wear is pretty simple. For example: "Any pair of blue jeans that do not have any tears or rips in them" is acceptable. But it's a little stricter when it comes to shoes, which must be black and non-slip. When it comes to the shirt, however, the policy is strict indeed: that shirt must be tucked in at all times when a server is on restaurant property. Plus, men should be clean shaven and women cannot wear makeup with "loud colors."

Servers must pool tips, often unfairly


Like many restaurants, Texas Roadhouse pays many of its employees well below the hourly minimum wage, and they can do this legally because these workers also receive tips. But according to Mashed, many servers are forced to distribute such a large percentage of their tips that they make wages barely above the legal minimum when all is said and done. Many Texas Roadhouse workers end up securing only $9.36 per hour in take-home pay.

More bread is never provided if not requested

Texas Roadhouse Rolls
Courtesy of The Cozy Cook

Many restaurants will keep the baskets of bread (or bread sticks or chips) coming, actively replacing these staple starches as soon as they start to dwindle. Texas Roadhouse employees, however, are required not to bring your table more bread unless someone specifically asks for it.

 A previous version of this article was originally published on Jul 9, 2022. It has been updated with new information.

Meaghan Cameron
Meaghan Cameron is Deputy Editor of Restaurants at Eat This, Not That! Read more about Meaghan