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What If This Was Your Employee? by Neil Friedman

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 14 Aug 2010 Comments: 0

What If This Was Your Employee?
This is one of those scratch-your-head, WOW, I just can’t believe what I’m hearing stories…
One of those stories that really makes you wonder…do I have employees like this? What are your employees/servers saying about your restaurant? Are they killing your business or helping your business?
I’ve always said…the success or failure of your restaurant is in the hands of your servers.
Here’s the story. Read it and then ask yourself the questions noted above.
Driving north towards New England, I stopped at a locally-based pizza chain – one of their semi-fast-food, sit-down restaurants.
I ordered a couple of slices of pizza, which I thought was priced pretty good.
On the way out and just to be friendly, I started a conversation with an employee who had just finished eating his slices of pizza during his lunch break. I was about to compliment him on the pizza, but instead asked kind of humorously, “Did you like your pizza?”
The answer I was expecting was something like “sure do.” But here’s what I got…
It’s not that good…
The ingredients aren’t the best
The independent pizza restaurants care more about the quality of the pizza
Upon my leaving, he said, “Gee, I hope you don’t work for this company. If so, I’ve just lost my job!”
Lessons Learned?
There’s a number of them and you can surely figure them out. Talk to your staff. Tell them this story. Take precautions. Educate them on the importance of being a sales ambassador for the restaurant.
But also tell them that nowadays, every guest is a food critic and a news reporter. Imagine if I had my phone video camera running and taping this conversation!
If any employee doesn’t love your product and has a “working for beer and iTunes money,” attitude, then that person may not be the right fit for your restaurant.
Remember, as an owner, this is your banana boat and you’ve invested too much blood, sweat and tears…and money…to have one bad apple screw it up for you.
Moving to the other end of the spectrum.
There are many employees who love what they do and are proud of the restaurant they work for and the product it serves. There are many that go out of their way to serve, not only in the restaurant but in the community. Unfortunately though, these great stories simply go untold.
Neil J. Friedman

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