The restaurant industry is extremely competitive. It’s difficult to be successful and stand out amongst the hundreds, if not thousands, of other restaurants in your local area; whether it’s the food, customer service or brand, customers will consistently critique your restaurant and even the smallest error could stir up a storm.
For restaurant owners struggling or looking to start their own business need to understand how to overcome obstacles, keep their staff morale high, create consistent food and earn customer loyalty through satisfaction. Only then will your restaurant be worthy of being successful.
Obstacles to Work Through
One of the most challenging obstacles of operating a restaurant is integration between staff and their knowledge of products and prices. The last thing a manager or owner wants is for a customer to inquiry about a product, but an employee doesn’t know how to answer them effectively. This places a negative label on the restaurant simply because of an unacknowledged employee. However, it’s not the employee’s fault; it comes down to poor management and leadership.
Make sure employees are knowledgeable of the products being offered and their prices. Predicting customers’ purchasing trends on a daily basis is important including any special events that occur in or around that particular area. As a manager, make sure all bases are covered and the staff is always ready in any situation. Communication is very important so that every employee, no matter the position, have a firm grasp on what to expect or what needs to be accomplished.
You will also want to make sure employees are comfortable using the appliances and equipment in the restaurant in order to prevent injuries or accidents. Familiarizing employees with every appliance – from the stove tops, to the fryers, to the commercial ice makers – prior to the restaurant opening is an essential step.
Positive and Motivated Staff
Any employee, rookie or veteran, may find it hard to stay motivated, especially in a fast-paced, overwhelming environment, such as restaurants. They need to have a clear understanding of their purpose, how great the restaurant they work for really is and receive consistent appreciation for their efforts.
Instill in employees, from the start that they work in one of the best, if not the best bars/pubs/restaurants in the area. Proper training and customer etiquette go a long way as well as proper supervision by managerial staff. Constant instillation of confidence and appreciation for their roles on a daily basis is a must; a daily affirmation of their importance in the company.
Consistent food, not delicious food. A restaurant’s food items better be good, otherwise why would people go there a second time? Delicious food is a given. The key is consistently preparing that food, so the customer experiences the same great taste every single time.
It starts with the managers. They supervise the food’s appearance and how it’s cooked. Managers need to properly train their employees to know what the food ordered should look like and how it should be cooked. Communication is key. A good manager wants their employees to ask any questions that might arise so as to not hinder customers’ overall restaurant experience. All food should be checked before going out of the kitchen to customers’ specifications.
3 E’s of Customer Loyalty
Customers go to a restaurant to enjoy themselves, the company of others, great food and exceptional service. It’s important to make them feel at ease and comfortable during their dining experience. In order for them to keep coming back, a restaurant must provide the 3 E’s of customer loyalty: Empathy. Empathy. Empathy.
Have the entire house staff put out excellent products, while providing a pleasant atmosphere as if they themselves were the customer. It’s the Golden Rule of food and hospitality; serve others how you want to be served. Imparting a family-like atmosphere between staff and customers will always bring them back.