As a restaurant owner, you are likely to face numerous challenges while running your business, regardless of its size or type. It’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed when faced with these obstacles. However, with the right approach, many common restaurant challenges can be overcome. To identify the issues in your restaurant, consider using comment cards to directly collect guest feedback. While you must take most comments with a grain of salt, pay special attention to recurring feedback as they signal potential trouble ahead. Identifying and fixing even small recurring problems can prevent them from snowballing into larger issues that result in negative customer feedback. Here are some of the most common restaurant challenges and how to overcome them:
A well-designed menu is critical to set the stage for an enjoyable dining experience, it is also your greatest marketing tool. Consider the amount of information you want to disclose, including potential allergens or how a dish is cooked. If guests complain about a difficult-to-read menu, redesign it, and focus on specific complaints. You may also want to find a way to signify dishes that are allergy- friendly or easy to modify.
Speed of service
A lot of complaints about slow service may require you to create new systems for your servers to follow. To ensure that servers maintain time guidelines, you can schedule regular mock training sessions with management. If there are certain menu items that tend to take longer to prepare and serve, consider communicating better with diners on when to expect the dish or adjusting the workflow in the kitchen.
Problems with disposable products
Disposable items can become an unnecessary recurring expense quickly. To address this challenge, find creative solutions like replacing disposable menus with QR codes that lead customers to a web version of the menu. If it is safe, you can also consider returning to using linens instead of paper napkins to make your restaurant feel upscale.
Your business lives and dies according to the quality and morale of your staff. To improve and improve staff morale and unity, organize events for staff to bond as a group, conduct periodic re- trainings on standards, and encourage everyone to talk to you if there is a conflict with another staff member. Cross training staff members are incredibly valuable for both the day-to-day operations of your business as well as staff cohesiveness. Provide forums for open discussion and feedback where the team can openly participate in the direction of your business.
Identifying and overcoming common restaurant challenges requires a proactive approach that involves paying attention to customer feedback, devising creative solutions, and fostering a positive work environment. By adopting these practices, you can create a better dining experience for your guests and improve the overall success of your business.
If you want help tackling some of these challenges, be sure to take our Business Survey to start your journey.