The “Let’s do it and let’s do it now!” attitude is one of the key elements of success, but whether or not that attitude is a driving force in your restaurant is entirely up to you, as manager and leader.
In almost every instance, an operation without a sense of urgency is under the direction of an operator who has lost the will to win. Perhaps a better illustration would be the old saying, “A fish rots from the head down.”
Following are examples of how you can help create a sense of urgency and hustle in your operation. There are no secrets of management here, nor do you need to rush out and enroll in a night-school business course. It all comes down to a little common sense and simple management by example.
Get out of that office!
If you were looking for an office job when you took on the responsibilities of operating a restaurant, you were most definitely misled. If you aren’t spending 95% of your time working the floors, then you are out of synch with what is expected of you. And if you think you’re fooling your employees with that tired line about having too much paperwork to do, think again.
Always, be the first one to work.
It never ceases to amaze me how many operators will demand promptness from their crew, yet he or she will forever be late themselves. To some, it is common practice for their opening crews to be kept waiting on the sidewalk wondering if the boss will ever show up to unlock the doors.
Make sure your employees see YOU hustling.
How often do your people catch you trotting across the foyer to open the door for a customer? How often do they catch you rushing to take, fill, prepare orders – especially during slow volume hours. When your people come to you and relay a customer complaint, do you say, “Okay, I’ll be there in a minute,” or do you spin around and race immediately to the customer? Hundreds of possibilities here.
Make sure your employees know it (whatever “it” is) is important to you.
If you have an outside road sign, is it important for you to keep it regularly updated? How about when the wind knocks down a few letters – is it fixed ASAP or do a couple of days go by? Do you make sure any broken equipment is repaired within 24 hours? How long do your dining room floors go without being swept or mopped? How often do you check your restrooms? If you run out of a product for your menu, do you simply put up an “out” sign until the next delivery, or do you make arrangements to get that product in now?