Managing a full restaurant business on your own can be extremely difficult, especially when you have a large team. Luckily, there are a number of strategies that can make developing a system that runs itself for you. Like any method, this one takes time, effort, and patience. However, with the right execution, you’re bound to have a well-oiled machine by the time you finish the process. Here are eight great strategies for effectively managing your restaurant staff.
What Are Your Weaknesses?
Before addressing your problems, it’s important that you take the time to write them out in full so that you can elevate your entire restaurant ecosystem— Not just one or two problem areas. It’s likely that your restaurant struggles with a systematic error. Whenever you have large scale environments with many moving parts, mistakes are bound to happen.
Write out all of your restaurants’ weaknesses, big or small. Once you have a comprehensive list, sort them out into different categories. You can choose the way you subdivide, but one of the most effective ways is to do so by the team. That way, your dishwashing issues are handled solely by those who wash the dishes, not bothering your waiting staff or cluttering the mind of your top chef.
Defining Your Teams
You may have naturally created teams already by defining your business’ weaknesses, but if not, make sure you do so. In order for a business to work well, each subset needs to work as it’s own individual unit effectively. Therefore, for your teams to work well together, they must be willing to work well when apart.
If you’re having difficulty defining who should go where to consult with your employees. They know the interworkings of your restaurant better than anyone else, so it’s likely they’ll have some valuable input.
Communication on the Fly
Restaurants are naturally fast-paced environments. In order to run yours effectively, you’re going to need to speak about high stakes communication. For example, many restaurants have their servers exclaim a gentle, “behind!”, whenever they are passing by a tight space or near someone in close quarters. This ensures that you’re not wasting food and getting your product out to the customer as soon as possible. Talk with your team about how you can improve your communication skills, especially in high-intensity periods.
The Importance of Proper Training
For your staff to be effective on the same page, it’s important that they go through some form of standardized training. Regardless of your employee’s position, make sure they understand what your restaurant stands for and what your restaurant is working to achieve as a whole. You can invest in some online course for your staff or develop your own curriculum. It may be beneficial for any trainee to briefly see how the other staff members operate so that you can work cohesively as a team.
It’s imperative that each subsection of your team has a way to communicate with another one. At the very least, make sure that your trainees are properly introduced to all members of your team, regardless of what task force they specialize in.
Opening Up A Dialogue
One of the most important parts of running a successful restaurant business is opening up a dialogue between your staff members and management. Some owners may find it most helpful to have a weekly meeting of sorts just to make sure that everyone is up to speed. You can also set up an online forum for your team where your employees can communicate remotely if needed. Popular apps like Remind and others make it so you can send out a group text to your team with important reminders. Make sure each trainee knows that they can effectively come to management with any issues that they may experience.
Set Up A Team Mentality
Bringing your team closer requires a deep understanding that each and every member is vital to the restaurant. Make sure your team members understand that your dishwasher is just as important as your top chef and vice versa. Without such understanding, it can be difficult for your different subsets to communicate directly and efficiently. Make sure your team understands that any criticism from other members or management is beneficial for everyone in the long run when taken seriously.
Get Rid of Excess Clutter
It may not be the first thing that comes to mind, but it turns out that physical clutter can really weigh heavily on your team and make it more difficult for your restaurant to execute dishes effectively. If your rarely-used equipment is taking up too much space in your facility, consider looking into a storage facility to reduce some of the physical mess.
At GAM, we offer comprehensive storage packages that are specialized for busy restaurant owners. In addition to storing your equipment and important documents, we can also easily transport your items to and from our ultra-secure facilities for maximum flexibility.
Like any good team, restaurant staff must have good rapport amongst one another to facilitate effective communication. One of the best ways to naturally facilitate this is by hosting monthly or regular gatherings where your team can get together and relax. This could be a potluck or just a mandatory restaurant tasting. Whatever it is, make sure your coworkers get a chance to kick back and really get a sense of who their colleagues are, especially from different subsets.
Over time, your team will begin to really respect each other in terms of both professional and personal life. Adding that extra layer of communication can be one of the best ways to develop a self-sufficient restaurant staff.
As you can see, managing a restaurant staff takes a whole lot of time and patience. Like anything else, it won’t happen overnight. If you have any concerns regarding inventory management, we’d love to help here at GAM. Feel free to reach out with any questions you may have. Enjoy experiencing all the benefits a well-managed restaurant can offer.