I will never forget the day I was finally asked to help manage the restaurant!
I began as a busser, moved up to a server and then got the chance to bartend, however, all of those promotions paled in comparison to the day my manager told me to begin helping him run things. The primary reason for this was the fact his assistant manager recently quit and he was dealing with personal issues at home. Regardless of the reasons, I felt in charge!
Immediately I jumped on the computer and began looking at spreadsheets and schedules. I double and triple checked the budgets and sales goals. We were not hitting our sales goals and shockingly were not even coming close. Time for me to save the day.
I jumped into action by creating new specials and changing the schedules to try and lean things a bit. I reduced the number of acceptable comps each server had and focused on upselling at all times. None of these were necessarily bad, however, I soon realized that I was poorly navigating this ship.
Less than a week into my tenure as “boss,” a small mutiny began. Finally, one of my good friends, and now a server that reports to me, called me out on my micromanagement and poor leadership. He literally stared me in the face and said he was going to quit if I did not change my approach…This was one of my best friends!
“Managing a restaurant is not as much about managing money as it is about managing people!”
I was stunned and hurt, however, this ended up being one of the most important days of my career because I learned that managing a restaurant is not as much about managing money as it is about managing people.
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