As the manager of a restaurant, how you perform at work has an impact on every area of the business, from sales to job performances to inventory management. Your habits have a wide-reaching ripple effect that begins with your staff. That’s why it’s so important to hone your habits. They don’t just set the tone for your personal performance; your behavior influences the entire operation of your restaurant.
Today, we share five successful habits of restaurant managers.
1. Focuses on the Priorities and Sees That They Are Realized
There are always new problems to solve; no two days are the same when you live the life of a restaurant manager. Unpredictability, coupled with daily distractions like emails and phone calls, make forgetting long-term goals easy. An effective restaurant manager prioritizes his or her tasks, sees that they are realized, and considers what the next step will be.
Since it’s so common to get pulled away from your work by issues and problems, it is even more critical that you are proactive. To be a great restaurant manager, you must fix problems before they occur. By minimizing the risk of future issues, you have more time for business and can keep a proper schedule.
2. Identifies the Value of Teamwork and Celebrates the Wins
Managers bear the brunt of criticism and stress-inducing feedback from the higher-ups, one of the most stressful parts of being a restaurant manager. A great manager doesn’t then take this out on the team or blame staff when things go wrong.
One of the greatest traits you can have is to identify the teamwork that takes place on the floor. This makes giving constructive and useful feedback a natural part of your restaurant’s rhythm. Knowing what they need to do to succeed, your staff can perform. Ultimately, this reflects well on you.
Equally as important is celebrating the wins. After hours of hard work, the positive reinforcement empowers staff and can even inspire better performances. Never point fingers when suffering a loss and avoid getting into a bad mood. Instead, use your problems as growth opportunities. Retrain your staff and keep it moving.
3. Sets the Pace for Staff
Restaurant managers are responsible for building interdependent teams that operate at fast paces. With effective training and management, you have a high-functioning staff. But don’t forget: Despite all the training that you give, you are the number one example of speed.
To manage a smooth operation, you must set the pace and be tough. Set high goals and standards, then work with the team to meet them. Without you being the first one to hustle, employees will never follow suit. A successful habit of a strong restaurant manager is to teach by example, and react with immediacy while on the job.
To achieve this, you must have a thorough knowledge of all aspects of the restaurant. You must know the menu and restaurant style, and have knowledge of the operations of each area. You need to know how to cook, serve, greet, prep, and wash dishes, along with manager responsibilities. This includes watching labor, knowing if there are too many people working or more people are needed. You need to be aware of food costs, realizing if food is being wasted or even stolen. You also need to know how to handle money and count cash. The toughest part is that you also need to be able to juggle all this knowledge every minute of the shift.
4. Promotes Company Values
Knowing the reason why your restaurant exists and does things the way it does is the first step towards growing the business and reputation. As the manager, you are responsible for sharing the company mission statement with your team. Get into the habit of promoting the core values of your company to build an impervious culture.
To use your company values as an effective managerial tool, don’t say the values—do them.
5. Understands the Value of High-Quality Customer Care
Managers are constantly dealing with the public and staff members. The way you speak to people must be in a professional manner. Always think before you speak. Some people react to their first thought, but this may not always be the best way to handle the situation. If employees are not getting along, you will need to know how to help them work together, without a negative attitude. You also need to know how to handle difficult customers, as well as the pleasant ones. Knowing how to take a compliment is as important as knowing how to take a complaint in a positive professional manner.
To be an effective manager, you must value interactions with customers. They are the core of your business, and identifying their needs is crucial for business survival. Get into the habit of remembering names and seating preferences of loyal customers. The real game-changers of customer service start happening when you give out occasional free items, like coffee, or remember to ask about their children.
Gestures like these bring customers back again and again. Ensure customers will come back—plus, set an example of customer treatment for your employees.
Bonus Tip: Builds a Strong Team and Delegates Responsibilities
It’s not possible to do everything alone the way a food truck operator does. At a restaurant, you have a staff of people that can and should be helping you. It all starts with hiring the right people and delegating responsibilities.
Since time and energy are necessary for things to get done the right way, delegating tasks is the only option you have to make sure your restaurant runs smoothly. It can be hard to trust your employees. As the restaurant manager, you are responsible for the outcome. Therefore, train your staff to complete tasks to your satisfaction.
If you are exhausted at the end of every day and feel as if you are not completing your duties well, you are probably over-extending yourself. Take an hour to evaluate your managerial strategy. Look at your staff with new eyes, and you might realize that you have been underutilizing members of your team. Define new roles, empower your staff, and hold everyone accountable for their new responsibilities.
Changes happen every day, especially in the restaurant business. Procedures and policies are revamped constantly. As a manager, you must adjust to these changes. You may not like them or agree with these changes, but it is the manager’s responsibility to adhere to these changes and help implement them to the staff members. If you disagree with a change, don’t just go to complain and don’t complain to other staff members. Go to your supervisor with possible reasons and alternatives.
Have the attitude that you want to follow their policy, but would like to suggest some reasons that this may not be the only path. Don’t say they are wrong, but say that you have other ideas on how to handle the situation. Open communication with your supervisor is vital to maintaining your credibility and upholding respect for your supervisor.
Employ these successful habits of restaurant managers and you will start reaping the rewards in a short time.
Complement your management style with a helpful restaurant point-of-sale system.