Recently I visited a popular restaurant with a friend. It was a great restaurant with august ambience and mouth-watering food. Looking at the magnitude of the customers and imagining the lavish profits my friend remarked, “Restaurant vaalon ka sahi hai.....kaam bhi asaan aur paisa bhi khoob!” This remark of his got me wondering. “Is it so easy to manage a restaurant?” I decided to research and found this:
Restaurant business is as complex and as difficult to manage as is any other more corporate-sounding business. Restaurant business today is a huge discipline in itself and involves irrefutable complexities. The taller the tree, the deeper go the roots.
Digging down I found the gold:
Humans are the most important resources of an organization. This statement stands equally true in the field of restaurants. Hence, having a trained and skilled workforce is imperative for a successful restaurant venture.
‘Right staff is the main ingredient!’
Moreover, once you have hired the right kind of people it is crucial that they keep the ‘right behaviour’ maintained. For this you need to keep the staff motivated and convinced to work efficiently.
‘Best of the ingredients won’t work if you don’t cook it right!’
A right marketing strategy is one which ‘pays off’ and not ‘lays off’. What I mean is marketing should generate revenue rather than eating it up. The most inexpensive way to advertise is social media. Use of social media has been quite a buzz in the restaurants’ marketing departments, but their social media operations are neither well-strategised nor profit-oriented. Restaurateurs need to hire ‘specialised staff’ as is the case in other businesses if they want to have an online edge over its competitors in the near future.
When one expands and enhances, the commercial processes involved might require professional expertise. Hence proper finance management is also an incumbent player in the game.
Maintain your Menu
Your menu is the calling card of your restaurant. It is something which will attract the customer back and hence it should be created with utmost contemplation. E- menu which replaces paper with tabs can help in better customisation and visualisation for the customers. At the same time one can re-invent the possibilities with the traditional menus. This silent salesperson of yours needs high levels of strategising, so that it is seasonal, visually pleasant, customer-friendly and targeted.
Good Customer Services
Good food will lure customers to your restaurant, but good customer services will attract them back. In a business where the customer is always right, customer appreciation and proper complaint handling are very important. A restaurant manager needs to ensure that customer is served constantly; not only with relishing food, but also with congenial customer services.
Rigid but Flexible
With having a well-organised and sought-out policy structure, it is important that this structure is actually implemented. One has to be rigid and absolutely uncompromising on these policies. But at the same time if a policy proves to be erroneous, one has to be ‘quick’ to replace/remove it.
The Extra Edge
Despite serving great food, obsequious services and fine environment restaurants are experimenting with other things which can entertain a customer. This can be a big formal orchestra or a simple ‘ludo’ board. Try to have something besides food that the customer can consume time with. This way the customers might have more reasons to be at your restaurant than ‘just eating’.
“Had fun!” sounds better than “had food!”
So! If you are planning to start a restaurant make sure you ‘do plan’ and then start. Happy ‘Restaurateur-ing’!