Using your steps of service strategically to send your guests the right message gives your restaurants a massive competitive edge.
My best clients add an element in their steps of service that drives guest engagement, satisfaction, and frequency – and thus revenue.
So why do most restaurants miss this opportunity and simply allow their steps of service to do, well, what it has always done?
Because they’ve already decided what the steps contain – and they seem to be working well.
The High Cost of Taking Your Steps of Service for Granted
You probably have not thought about your steps of service in a long time.
It’s like the recipe for your signature menu item, the temperature in the dining room, and the volume on the background music you play.
You take these basic components of your restaurants for granted – even though you rely on them.
Done and done.
It seems more important to put your energy into more exciting efforts with a higher upside: new locations, marketing, and developing your management team.
Your Steps of Service Must Tell Your Story
“Greet the guests within 20 seconds of walking through the door.”
“Greet the guests within 60 seconds of them being seated.”
How many times have we all heard those words?
I mean, I almost fell asleep typing them.
Sure, those steps are essential but, as one of my clients would say, “It’s a given.”
Three Ways to Add Value to the Dining Experience
When I work with my clients, I make sure their steps of service carry messaging beyond the basics, to make more money and give their guests a better experience.
- One of my clients, riding the local trend, makes sure every server references that in their tableside manner.
- Another insists each guest hears at least one story about the inspiration and creation of a menu item.
- Still another, known for community involvement, asks each server to mention an aspect of that so guests share in those positive vibes.
Culture Must Permeate Everything
Culture creates 100% of your profits.
Culture enrolls your employees and binds your guest to your brand.
If you are an owner of a successful multi-unit independent restaurant company, you already know about today’s market and the “fight club” level of competition for employees and diners you face every day.
To differentiate your brand (and prosper) you must add a cultural piece to your steps of service.
Over to you. What addition will you make to your steps of service that will build your brand, uniqueness, personal connections, revenue, and profit?