Restaurant Survival

Restaurant Survival

Here are some facts that every restaurant should know, did you know that over 60% of Americans dine in or carry-out at restaurants at-least once a week?  Let’s break it down, 33% or more people dine in a casual sit down restaurant and 28% or more people dine in or order carry out at a fast food restaurant.

A large percentage of people eat out at a restaurant or order carry out twice a week or more. If the average American eats out twice a week for lunch or dinner, they may spend $10.00 or more per visit per person not including the tip. Let’s face it, people have to eat. Restaurants are always going to exist, it is all about if your restaurant is going to be a part of the equation.

Why are so many people eating out? 
Most people just don’t have time to prepare food at home, restaurants make it easier to choose an item right off the menu and have it prepared quickly. It does cost more to eat out compared to preparing and eating at home. Although people don’t mind spending money at a restaurant as long as the service and food is above average.

Here are several reasons why some people eat out once or twice a week or more?

  • Convenient, easier to dine out or carry out compared to preparing the food at home and cleaning up after.
  • Lazy, don’t want to spend the time preparing food.
  • Elderly people prefer eating out using coupons or taking advantage of senior discounts or early bird specials. These individuals are strapped to a fixed income.
  • Work long hours, just don’t have time to cook.
  • Hate cooking, especially cleaning up afterward.
  • Favorite restaurant, favorite recipe and great.Does your restaurant stand out?

Does your restaurant have a great reputation? It takes hard work and dedication to mold a WOW restaurant that customer’s will remember and rave about to their family, friends and co-workers. Word of mouth is the number one way to advertise your business, one customer at a time.

Restaurant competition is fierce. With so many restaurants in the United States, especially near your location, you need to be better than the guy next door.Restaurant location, menu and atmosphere are a few things that could help or damage your restaurant’s success. Customer service is another factor in determining your restaurant’s sound future.

It’s defiantly not practical to open a restaurant without knowing and understanding how to run a successful business. You might have worked as a restaurant employee or manager in the past, it is the passion for the job, knowledge that will help educate, and drive that will make it happen. It takes knowledge, dedication, drive and persistence to mold a business into a WOW restaurant.

Another factor is controlling food and labor cost. Food and labor cost are the two biggest chunks in the restaurants financial pie.

What is the restaurant Prime Cost?
Food and labor cost, which includes payroll taxes, benefits and unemployment taxes, etc. A good prime cost percent that a restaurant should be at is between 60% and 65% of the restaurants total revenue.  Falling below 60% or more in prime cost will cost you big time.  Is your food or labor cost too high? If so, it is critical that you pinpoint why and correct it quickly.  If you are one of the few restaurants that manages your prime numbers correctly, congratulations.

Here is what you need to know to help boost your financial bottom line.

Customer Service 

Providing excellent customer service to each customer every time

Employee retention is crucial 
Treat all employees with respect and dignity. Create an awesome work environment that employee’s will love. Train management in communication skills. Most of all, weed out low performing employees who are not willing to conform to your standards.

Employee training program 
Create a WOW employee training program. Implement and monitor the training program consistently. Use a restaurant action plan to pinpoint areas of opportunities, then correct the issues in a timely manner.

Manage fixed and non-fixed expenses
Make a full list of fixed and non-fixed expenses and look for ways to reduce to cost without jeopardizing customer service.

Utilize great resources
Manager 360 assessment, manager performance review, employee performance review or an employee correction action notice to record and develop management and employee performance.

Quality restaurant forms, checklists, quick reference charts, spreadsheets and training manuals

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