Transforming Your Good Restaurant into a Successful Business

One of the most common occupational hazards for restaurant owners is getting so caught up in the day to day minutiae of operating their restaurants that they lose sight of the big picture—which should be turning their restaurants into successful businesses. The skills that are required to run a successful business are not the same as those required to run a good restaurant, and it’s for that reason alone that many new restaurant businesses fail. They may have a great idea, but lack the business skills to transform that good restaurant idea into a great business.

Being the CEOVs. the EmployeeRestaurant Owner

One of the biggest reasons that restaurants fail to thrive is that the owner is too busy doing the tasks of an employee to make the strategic decisions required to move the business forward. While the “employee”owner is likely working right alongside his or her staff in the daily restaurant operations, the CEO owner is spending his or her time analyzing data, looking for opportunities to improve efficiency and profitability and implementing operational standards and procedures to ensure that an excellent result can be replicated, every time. What’s more, the employee owner is so intimately involved in the daily decisions and details of the restaurant that its successful operation is dependent on the owner’s presence on premises. The CEO owner strives to use the systems created to allow the restaurant to run independently of his presence without a hitch. Daily operational details are in the hands of capable employees and the owner is free to keep his eye on the big picture of growing a successful business.

Aside from the obvious benefit of being able devote more of your attention to the business aspect of your restaurant when you take the position of being a “CEO Owner,”setting up a self-sustaining system also ensures that your restaurant won’t be totally dependent on you to be there all the time. Translation—you’ll be able to have a life outside the restaurant!

Get to Work “On” the Restaurant, Not “In” It!

There are three main areas that the strategic restaurant owner focuses on to ensure a successful business: operations, financial and marketing. Operations includes all the functions necessary to prep and serve your products to your customers and all of the activities that occur every day in the restaurant. The goal here is to set up systems for standards and procedures that will allow the ordinary people you hire to produce excellent results by having very good systems to follow. Without a system, it’s challenging for staff to create a consistent and predictable experience for your guests over and over again. Consistency and predictability go a long way in the eyes of the public. The benefit of setting up operational standards and procedures that can be replicated perfectly time and again can not be overstated.

The financial area includes dealing with accounting, cash management, cost control and both operational and financial reporting. Marketing and advertising includes general marketing and promotional campaigns, positioning your brand, public relations, community involvement and projecting the right image.

The Possibilities for Growing Your Restaurant Business Are Unending

Again, the point is not to be involved in the day to day operations of these operational areas; the owner’s job needs to be “strategic overlook.” Instead, focus on analyzing your data, looking for opportunities for greater efficiency and profitability and developing systems that will allow those great results to be replicated again and again. With more time to plan the success of your business, you’ll have the opportunity to explore new marketing initiatives, new lines of business, the development of multiple locations, or whatever it is that you want to do to grow your restaurant into a successful and profitable business.

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3 Responses to “Transforming Your Good Restaurant into a Successful Business”

  1. lyndaybaker Says:

    Reblogged this on lyndaybaker and commented:
    Great read, Jim. Thanks.

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