Correcting 10 Faulty Assumptions That Take Up Space in Restaurant Owners’ Heads

Many of the restaurateurs I talk to every day often make assumptions that send them in absolutely wrong directions.

When this happens in your brain, let me help you neutralize them with Matthew’s Top 10 Course Corrections – the cure for the faulty assumptions that rattle around in restaurant owners’ heads.

When you…

  1. Think you ought to have all the answers yourself: Step back and laugh at your ego. Then pull your team together, join a group, or find help that can move you where you want to go much more quickly than you could ever do on your own. 
  2. Believe outside people won’t understand your business – so you only promote from within: Reject the idea that not knowing someone automatically makes them “the devil you don’t know.” Many experienced outsiders can put their foot on your results accelerator by bringing techniques from other organizations. 
  3. Visit a competing restaurant and you find yourself making a list of things you do better than them: Stop. Then start the list of what you can learn from the competition and avoid the temptation to be defensive. 
  4. Worry about raising prices or losing guests: Remember how much those guests expressed their love for you during the pandemic – and charge what you charge while always focusing on the fundamentals of a great guest experience. 
  5. Complain that your managers don’t improve: Remember, most people remain capable of more than they think they can handle, and a few just plain won’t be. Focus on people who can learn. 
  6. Bemoan the lack of service in our society: Channel that into the exceptional guest relationships that develop through great hospitality and service in your restaurants and make that a differentiator. 
  7. Believe there is no way to increase your bottom line: Remember that big cost management results come from little shifts in quarter points and half points. 
  8. Can’t explain your culture in five words or less, or hear that repeated back from your team members: Realize you have ceded the most important advantage in attracting guests and employees to your brand. 
  9. Think you have to sell your business to enjoy the asset you have built: Instead, consider retiring in place – becoming an owner with a management team that runs your business for you. 
  10. Feel it would be irresponsible to go on a long vacation: Instead, realize it would be irresponsible not to give yourself that vacation and give your business the benefit of a refreshed and recharged leader.

Over to you. Which of my top 10 course corrections made you nod your head, made you feel uncomfortable, or evoked laughter? Any of those three reactions indicate you have work to do. How will you activate improvement?