An effective restaurant manager has to wear a number of different hats to maintain a tight ship. This includes customer service, resolving staff issues, meeting inventory challenges and public relations to name a few.
Here are some ways you can become a successful restaurant manager who can delegate those tasks to a team effectively:
Focus on key strategies and activities. Effective and efficient restaurant managers are those who delegate responsibilities and schedule their priorities. Distractions are part of the job but a good manager does not focus on them. Besides common ones such as emails and calls, emergencies can pull them from their main work.
However, an efficient professional delegates emergency response to certain employees to ensure this does not happen. Their aims is to minimize damage and they need to remain focused on to ensure they do not get distracted. Otherwise, they will only work on the business rather than in the business by creating new solutions for existing problems.
Respect the staff. The staff you work with can make or break you depending on how you treat them. A motivated team will be more inclined to cooperate with your plans than one that is disrespected. The best managers treat their team members as individuals and this includes taking their concerns and ideas into consideration.
By personalizing yourself with your staff, you can get to know them better and especially how they work. If they feel respected, they not only perform better, but they remain level which does wonders in reducing turnover rates.
However, this does not mean that you should play favorites. That is the best way to de-motivate a team and ruin all of the hard work they put in.
Remain consistent. Each day is different in the restaurant business. Each day you get to serve different people and offer them food based on the menu of the day. While this can be exciting, it can also drain you and your staff. However, an effective manager who is a pillar of consistency can be counted on during such stressful periods.
If you are consistent with how you manage staff whether it is a slow day at the restaurant or a stressful one, you can solve issues quickly without issue. That work ethic will flow down to your staff and will ensure they work together harmoniously.
Analyze cash flow closely. To determine cash flow you need to find the difference between the money coming in and going out of the restaurant. By ‘going out’ we mean money that is being spent on the restaurant for food, maintenance etc.
An efficient manager keeps tabs on those expenses closely on a daily and weekly basis. If you don’t understand the basic concepts of restaurant finances, you can place the establishment at risk. This includes jeopardizing employee salaries just because there isn’t enough money coming in or you mismanaged the books.
Plan ahead. The best way to ensure you are not surprised on the job or lose money unexpectedly is by planning ahead. By anticipating common needs and forecasting issues, you can become more proactive and keep stress at bay.
The best way to do that is to create a list of the things that need to be taken care of in the next couple of months. Prioritize items that are more important in your line of work. For instance, if a server just left, send out ads for a new one immediately even if it means pushing back some things. Otherwise, your workers will be overworked and you might see more of them leave later.
Similarly, practice taking inventories every night when the last diner leaves. That way you can tally how much the restaurant spent with the money you got from the customers. If you lost more than you gained, you need to create a plan to reverse that situation.
Qualifications of Effective Food and Beverage Managers
A restaurant has to maintain quality standards to remain competitive. This means ensuring that food is cooked properly, drinks are always ice cold and hygiene standards are never compromised. That is what a Food and Beverage manager is responsible for to ensure the restaurant is always presented in the best possible light.
Besides this, they are also responsible for overseeing staff in outlets such as delis, catering companies, bakeries etc. In order to be a leader in this field, you need to start at the entry level position.
Here are some qualities of an effective F & B manager that you can hone before getting the position:
- People oriented. Food and beverage managers have to be comfortable with people irrespective of how they are. In restaurants, some might even work behind the counter and in fine dining establishments, they are often seen walking the floor and talking to diners. In addition, they also have to ensure that employees work efficiently and customers don’t have cause to complain. That requires smooth communication skills to ensure patrons return to the restaurant and to reduce turnover rates.
- Good organization skills. These professionals also have to have great organization skills. This is also why they are mathematically inclined. This is understandable since they have to manage food and beverage costs, work schedules, cleaning schedules and shipments to ensure budgetary compliance. A proficient Food and Beverage manager is detail-oriented and understands the importance of training manuals and induction processes. Attention to detail allows them to keep an eye on inventories and products which are needed in the restaurant on a regular basis.
- Enthusiastic learners and leaders. Even after you have become a Food and Beverage manager, you will be constantly learning. This means looking up liability issues that the restaurant might face. To prevent that, you will need to remain up to date with current safety certifications and management techniques. Employees are likely to perform better if they know that they can learn from you and that is only possible if you have qualifications that exceed theirs’. As a leader in a notoriously high turnover industry, your job is to ensure your staff is as satisfied as clients. This will reduce training time and the time it takes to hire new people.
- Flexible with hours. A manager’s hours are not dependent on the clock – they depend on the place they are responsible for overseeing. As a Food and Beverage manager in a restaurant or bar, you cannot time out with employees. Late nights will be regular especially when you need to examine inventory or sales. In other words, you need to be mentally prepared to work 10 hours at least if your goal is to work in management full time.
- Maintain good customer service. Customer service is not just your employees’ responsibility. As their leader, you need to ensure that the patrons they are seeing to are satisfied with the level of service. Being friendly and courteous will help especially if an employee messes up or a guest gets angry. Your job is to ensure that they keep coming back with the promise that they will receive the same care each time. This will involve a lot of stamina and patience because you cannot afford to lose your temper in front of quests or in front of employees. Good problem solving skills will hold you in good stead and help you come up with effective solutions.
Food and Beverage Programs
If you are ready to take the next step and enter management in the food business, sign up for a training course today to receive your certification. 360Training.com offers a range of programs for businesses and professionals all of which are ANSI accredited.
In the hospitality business, customer service and safety are essential for success. Our Food Safety and Alcohol training program is designed keeping this in mind and to help businesses protect their bottom line. All of the training courses can be taken online and are self paced so you can take them as per your busy schedule.
Protect your business, your employees and your patrons by brushing up on your food and beverage management skills the right way. It will save you money down the line and keep customers coming back for more.