Many restaurant managers undervalue the life and business skills their profession teaches them. Every day, I see managers who are just going through the motions. They're not trying to progress, grow their skills, or capitalize on their opportunities.
To find fulfillment, human beings need growth. When managers don't grow, they (figuratively) die.
Restaurants are unique because they combine every element of business under one roof: product creation, distribution, service, team development, strategy, marketing, operations, finance, tactical execution and more. Managing a business with all of these elements in one place is an opportunity you shouldn't miss.
Restaurant management will help you develop myriad skills that can serve you in any industry, as well as in life.
On the fly decision making
If there is anything restaurant managers must do with total consistency, it’s making decisions on the fly.
Since no two days are alike in a restaurant, managers have to make quick decisions constantly. Whether it’s how to handle a unique guest request, how to stay in line with monthly numbers, or how to respond to a staffing challenge, every decision a restaurant manager makes directly affects the business.
Restaurant managers must make decisions quickly, and worry about risks and consequences later. This helps them develop the courage and resilience they need to grow as managers.
Having the ability to make decisions is a foundation of leadership in any field, and in life. Without a decision, nothing moves forward. Restaurant management is a real opportunity to grow the decision-making muscle by the minute.
Restaurant management is less about managing things, and more about leading teams and developing strong relationships with guests.
Great managers realize that restaurants are a social and highly emotional business. Guests have unlimited choices when it comes to food, ambiance and convenience, so their decision to visit a particular restaurant is strictly emotional. They are loyal patrons because they connect with the venue and the people who work within it.
The greatest managers spend a lot of time in the front of the house. They’re visible; their presence is palpable. They take every opportunity to get to know their guests. These managers know people are the biggest asset to business, and that’s where they focus.
The greatest restaurant managers also build solid teams within a restaurant. They are effective influencers and leaders, not just managers of tasks. They build an environment of collaboration, not of fear and division.
Relationship building is an important skill in any business and in life. Often, the best relationship builders are also the best influencers, leaders and salespeople. Since nothing happens without people, there is no disadvantage to knowing more people.
Restaurant management is a perfect platform for leading, influencing and building valuable relationships.
Business and strategic acumen
Restaurants are high-cost operations where every dollar makes a difference. Great managers not only know their numbers; they are also strategic. They know the story the numbers tell.
The best restaurant managers have the business sense to create certain financial outcomes. They devote themselves to building the bottom line. They know that to stay in line with numbers, they need to grow the business, and see the bigger picture. They know how to take advantage of market trends, economic downturns, technology, social trends, and even local competition.
A truly great restaurant manager will be an asset because of their business sense and strategic thinking.
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|Anna Dolce is a life and business strategist, restaurant and small business expert, writer and speaker. Anna helps restaurant owners and various entrepreneurs grow their businesses and get the most out of their lives. Anna has spoken from the TEDx stage, major conferences and industry shows on the topics of service vs. hospitality, entrepreneurship, leadership and restaurants. Visit annadolce.com to get in touch.
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