95% of restaurateurs get into the business because of passion.
Well I say, screw the Passion! Til there’s no profit, it’s not exciting. And I say this from experience.
I had a lot of bloody passion for my business! I had so much passion I worked 15 hours a day, but I wasn’t making any money.
And then I realized I want to make money. A LOT of money. And I want to make it NOW.
I had to figure it out.
I didn’t want to wait for my passion to play out and for the profit to come in some distant future.
So how did I earn a lot more profit from my passion?
How did I go from working 15 hours a day and making no money to working less hours and earning a lot more?
Over the years, I tried many things, but the one thing that drastically improved my profit is ‘A daily ritual’*. Which by the way is different than a shift meeting. (The daily ritual can replace your daily shift meeting if you choose.)
A shift meeting focuses solely on daily operational basics such as reservations, housekeeping activities, special menu, menu item availability and unavailability, and sometimes staff scheduling.
But the daily ritual was different because it focused on revenues and profits.
And it was very simple. It didn’t involve too much technicality, it wasn’t more work for the employees involved, and I didn’t even need a computer. It was easy to implement and I still do it every day.
I meet my managers face to face for 15 minutes at the same time every morning. The days I am not at work, I ask a team member to conference everyone in over the phone.
We discuss the same exact four things in the same exact order every single day:
- How are you?
To bring in a more human-to-human personal touch before business.
- Daily metrics
Such as yesterday’s revenues, today’s revenue target and the average guest check target, etc.
- Any Specials
Such as special menu, menu item availability and unavailability, etc.
Each employee is given a minute to share their challenges. They are also asked to include anything they might have heard from customers the previous day (the good and the bad).
It’s an open table. Everyone is encouraged to add in any ideas/solutions they may have to challenges. Do not underestimate this part because sometimes the best ideas come straight from your employees.
Note, sometimes an employee may mention a topic that may require a lengthier discussion and so I tell them to meet me one-on-one after our daily 15-minute ritual. The key here is to stick to 15 minutes. Don’t exceed the time. (I will say that it does take some practice to adhere to the 15-minute limit.)
So what did this do for us?
It aligned us all for the whole day. It brought everyone from the front, back of the house and management on the same page. It created sharp focus. It cleared up any assumptions and misunderstandings an employee may have had about their daily tasks. And it drastically cut firefighting so my team and I could focus on revenue generating activities. (Sign up here to learn more about the “FIREPROOF TECHNIQUE”, that helps eliminate 90% of your time spent firefighting)
Additionally, this transparent system was like a highway of information on both sides and I began to understand all these trends that were happening in my restaurants and kiosks. I learned from these trends and saw opportunities. And here’s the big one. I cashed in on these opportunities and I made a lot of profit. And all that profit fueled my passion.
So passion is important, but remember you want to make money too. Start your daily ritual today.
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