The customer is (almost) always right. When a customer has a complaint, listen and handle the situation with tact, and while making them happy without losing too much money and without causing the customer to leave angry (which provides them with a reason to tell their friends to avoid your establishment).
Without employees, you have no restaurant. The first step is hiring the right staff. For any position you need to consider experience, energy, desire to work, dedication, and ability to climb the ladder. Your next step is to clearly define the job as well as a system of rewards and disciplinary actions. This should include things like: sick days, call-ins, tardiness, performance reviews, acceptable and unacceptable behavior, raises, bonuses, and promotions. Following this, you need to keep your employees happy and motivated. Do what you can to keep the work environment pleasant and listen to your employees if they have complains or suggestions. They are the ones handling the food and talking with the customers. They will know first-hand what the customers like, what sells the most, and even what processes can be streamlined for higher efficiency. Incentives, contests, prizes, and more are wonderful ways to keep morale and energy high and your employees challenged.
On a similar note, never be afraid to lead by example. Employees work best when they know their manager or boss is willing to do every job. If you feel you are above cleaning dishes, how can you expect your dishwashers to do a good job? Also, never be a “do what I say, not as I do,” boss. Employees watch your every move. If you can’t be bothered to follow policy or be courteous, why should they?
Always be aware of your promotions and advertisement. A business that never offers coupons or special deals on food will not succeed. Similarly, if you never advertise directly, you better have a plan for word-of-mouth advertisement. Unless you are located in the 100% most perfect location, there is no way everyone will know where you are located or that your business even exists. Discuss marketing strategies with others in the company (such as the company you are franchising, like Maid-Rite).
Trim corners without effecting quality. This can mean shopping around for the best ingredients for your food and supplies or it can mean using cost-efficient lights and products. Profit is the goal, so spending less on necessities can help your profit grow. However, never sacrifice quality to save money. There is always a way to get high quality product for reasonable costs.
It is imperative that you keep a close eye on sales. Using a Point-of-Sales (POS) system is helpful because it allows you to keep track of what sells (for inventory purposes) as well as what the best and worst selling items are. If you realize you are selling a lot of one item, you know you need to order more (possibly saving by buying in bulk) and that you may be able to raise the price without losing sales to increase your profit margin. Similarly, you can discover things that are over-priced or that you do not need to order the supplies for nearly as often, decreasing profit loss.
Running a successful business will take practice and research and time. The glory of running a franchised location is that we will help you get your feet on the ground. Opening your own Maid-Rite restaurant means you are not alone and you do not have to start from scratch. Contact us today to get your business rolling!