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The hard truth about OWNING A RESTAURANT

Have you wondered why the restaurant industry is SO hard?!

Is it because of the food? The recipes? The customers?

Today we are talking about two hardest parts about the restaurant business.

Let’s tackle this.

The first hardest part about this industry is: MONEY.

To succeed in this industry, you NEED capital! Rent is expensive, labor is expensive, all kinds of insurance you need to pay for are expensive and so on and on.

Many restaurants actually do not make a profit month after month and sooner or later, they run out of gas and need to close shop.

That is exactly why we are obsessed with making $$$$$$$ on this show - MAKING DOUGH SHOW!

This industry is vicious. Cost is high, profit margin is LOW.

Two critical things to keep in mind:

  • We must keep as much as we can of the money we are making. That’s why it’s critical to be obsessed with our numbers! Where is every single dollar going? Food cost, repairs, labor and etc.

  • We must make as much as we can and multiply our money! That’s why it’s critical to dedicate blocks of time to MONEY GENERATING ACTIVITIES! It’s our responsibility as restaurant owners, and managers to sow seeds daily! If we don’t do it, then who will do it for us?!

Aside from money, the second hardest aspect of this industry is the PEOPLE!

In fact, I’d say, this is actually the hardest part! Once you figure out how to market your restaurant and what works, you simply need to do more of it to grow sales and add new customers.

However, the leadership development of a high turnover company is a huge challenge many don’t understand!

This literally takes around 98% of our time! Our people.

Their satisfaction at work, keeping them engaged, training and investing in them.

They may be going through a rough season, and their performance is compromised. What can we do to help them out of this season?

Here is the thing, we NEED our team more than they need us! This doesn’t work out, they can go somewhere else however, after training and investing in them, we really need them to stick around!

My husband Matt and I invest thousands of dollars in our leadership development yearly so we can serve our team better. They are our greatest asset and we need to know how to cultivate them.

We are still figuring it out by the way! This process will never end.

It’s critical to have blocks of time dedicated to your people! Meeting them, individually and ask a team so you can assess the health of your team and what you need to do to lead your team forward.

You need to constantly hire, train, document, assess and also let go of people! This takes a lot of your time and mental energy! So, go into this industry knowing that you better get good at this if you want to succeed.

No one is perfect, us or the team! That’s why we need to be obsessed with training. Our own, and our team! We need to be growing in some aspect of the job every day no matter who long we’ve been doing this.

The minute we, and our team feels that we know everything will be the moment we start overlooking details and step by step our performance as a team goes down.. As a leader, we must stay humble.

The reason we are talking about this is because I feel many (including ourselves) entered this restaurant industry for the passion for food and hospitality not realizing what it takes to succeed: marketing and leadership!

A poorly managed restaurant goes out of business:

  • Poorly managed resources ($)

  • Poorly managed people!

Look at your calendar, are you spending time on money generating activities? If not, start blocking an hour or two starting next week.

Also, are you spending specific and dedicated time meeting with your people? If not, you better get started on that!

The people aspect of our restaurant can be greatest weakness, and our greatest asset.

If our sales is steadily growing, and our team is getting trained daily and growing steadily. Then, life as a restaurant owner can be much much easier!



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