Realizing The Dream
Okay, you’ve achieved the dream of opening your own restaurant, and things are proceeding fairly smoothly. It becomes important, however, to keep your eye firmly on the strategy you initially set in place and work the problem through to its logical end. Restaurants are risky ventures in any scenario (unless of course you are a McDonalds or some other franchise that has been tried and proven many times over).
Actually, about a quarter of all new restaurant startups fail within their first year of operation, usually plagued by internal factors that contribute to its demise. Managers may be ill prepared for what they are required to deal with. How then to ensure at least a shot at success?
Don’t be afraid of long hours. The restaurant business is not for those who are looking for a 9-5 situation. Restaurant managers often put in 80 or 90 hours on a regular basis just to run the daily operation. Restaurant success requires a commitment even after the establishment has opened, including weekends and holidays.
Have a work ethic. Restaurant work is often a get-your-hands-dirty proposition, especially when slacker employees drop the ball and you have to pitch n to make sure everything that needs doing actually gets done. You may have to work every job in the place at some point, and it is important to make your establishment’s culture one of hard work, with the manager setting the standard.
Show me the money. Know how to properly budget and allocate funds to keep your business in the black, and have a financial plan in place to keep things that way. Of course it is impossible to plan for every contingency, but having that plan in place makes it much easier to deal with the eventualities that always seem to crop up.
Keeping Up The Pace
Don’t lose your passion for the business. Any venture is in trouble when the proprietor loses their passion , their vision for the business model. Passion means you won’t mind the long hours or less than glamorous conditions that you find yourself in.
Keep an eye on the competition. New restaurants open every month, some of which may siphon off your customer base. Maintain some strong distinguishing characteristics to keep your restaurant set apart from the pack.
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Keep a close eye on the economy, being observant to any changes that could affect your company’s bottom line, such as cost inflation and loss reduction.
Lastly, maintain a strong management structure, putting forth the performance and effort to lead the team to a successful goal. Do your best to minimize changes in management, as that usually has a negative effect on the business as a whole.
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