How Top Restaurants Dominate in the Post Pandemic World by Boosting GM Effectiveness

They run restaurants and are an organization’s highest VIPs.

So it’s not unreasonable that my best clients are continually growing the capability of their general managers.

You want them to act like they have ownership, or spend less time on task, or take on activities you currently undertake – involving them in menu development, education and training, and financial analysis, or innovation on to-go, delivery, and curbside.

But how to move so they will do this? 

The Deadline of a Lifetime Is Your Friend

There’s nothing quite like a looming deadline to get things moving.

That deadline-induced adrenaline and focus.

Now, as owner of a successful multi-unit restaurant company, you have the deadline of a lifetime coming up – the end of the Pandemic.

It’s within planning range.

The honeymoon with your guests will start up again, when people feel free to be in your restaurants.

At first, that awareness will be phenomenal.

The endorphins will flow and turn into stories you will brag about one day, with people happier than you can remember ever seeing in the past, except for in the movies.

Guest behavior will look like a return to old habits – until you look closely and see that your guest has rewired some habits that used to be hard-wired.

Because those old habits lapsed.

To win, set the mood for them to rewire those habits in your favor.

Make your GMs and your restaurants better now.

Three Steps to Making GMs Better Before the Curtain Goes Up

Before the curtain rises on some sort of normal, think about how to make your general managers better.

  1. Make it simple. The simple method of developing people? Figure out what they don’t yet do, and what you can educate them on taking over in the future.
  2. Process. Have a plan or a system of education to move them forward. It must have a strong accountability piece.
  3. Share the good news. Never forget to tell them how they will become more powerful, and what comes next. Who doesn’t want to hear that?

Build loyalty and excitement, and boost retention at a time where the market for managers remains beyond brutal.

Your GM’s capacity for making the most out of the coming post-COVID honeymoon sets your restaurants up to dominate and not only equal historical sales, but exceed them.

Over to you…what have you identified that would increase the power of your GMs? And how do you plan for them to be there before this mess ends?