The start of a new year can bring excitement and an extra boost of motivation to get your restaurant on track for a successful year. Resolutions aren’t just for your personal life, they are great for setting goals for your business as well. Now is the perfect time to refocus your intentions and evaluate your restaurant’s performance up to this point. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been in business five years or fifty years, this self-reflection can reignite your excitement for your business.
Here are some resolution ideas that can help set your restaurant on the path to success for the year:
Improve food inventory management.
Work together with your food purchaser to know exactly how often certain foods are ordered and how quickly they’re being used up. You’ll also want to meet with your cooks and waitstaff about how ingredients and products are being used. After conducting a food waste audit, create a system that will let you use your orders to the fullest, with as little waste as possible.
According to the “Restaurant Food Waste Action Guide” created by ReFED (a collaboration of private, nonprofit, and public-sector leaders to reduce food waste in the United States), the tracking of thrown away food could cut food costs by two to six percent. Not only can this reduce food waste for the planet, it will also save you from buying unnecessary products that end up going to waste.
Get (more) involved in your community.
Plan out events for the year that will drive customers to your restaurant for an extra meal and even add some new faces to your regular crowd.
Is there a big local rivalry game coming up? Offer specials customized to that event and put together a theme night. Want to partner with other businesses? Spearhead hosting a festival so that other businesses can show off their wares and you’ve got the food covered.
Give back more.
Have you been approached for a charitable fundraising event but not sure how to accomplish it? Set up guidelines and a fundraising packet to give to interested organizations. This way both parties know what they can expect, and the process is streamlined, making it easy to collaborate.
Not only will customers appreciate your business supporting causes they care about, you might even gain new customers that wouldn’t have come in otherwise.
Know when to delegate.
You don’t need to be the jack of all trades to have a successful restaurant, but you do need to know how to manage your time effectively to best serve your business. This requires knowing when you should take on a task and when you need to delegate it to others.
Take the time to be serious about setting your calendar and the server schedule. This will help you be more realistic about the free time you have and where you’ll need to pull another manager or staff member to pick up the slack.
Hiring with intent.
Increase the thought behind when you hire someone. Yes, you are always hiring with specific tasks in mind, but are you just finding any warm body to do them? It’s important to find hard-workers that are self-starting and motivated.
Take the time to analyze your current staff as well. Compare how long they’ve been there to see what is working. If you’re having trouble with hiring, look at how the benefits/perks you’re offering stack up against similar restaurants in your area.
Commit to safety.
Staying current on OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirements for your restaurant is not only smart, it’s essential and can prove to be expensive if not followed. Provide your employees a safe, happy, and healthy environment this year by following OSHA’s guidelines. Give regular trainings on fire and equipment safety, especially when new hires are added to your staff.
Knowing how to properly store and prepare food is also important for any restaurant employee to be familiar with. This can build employee confidence and protect customers from food-handling ailments.
The start of a new year is a great time to refocus what your restaurant’s mission is and make changes toward it accordingly. What resolutions are you focused on keeping for your restaurant business?