Tuesday, August 4, 2009
So, you're starting a restaurant. You cannot forget that restaurants are businesses. And, as such, they need to be run like a business, not like a kitchen. So, what you'll need to do is to is focus on the systems if you want to be successful. Restaurants all have systems, just like every other business; every business is comprised of systems. There is the accounting system, inventory system, advertising system, supply system, etc. Everything that happens inside and outside of a restaurant pertains to every other part of the restaurant. Everything affects everything else. You mustn't forget that all systems work together.
When you start a restaurant, you are starting a business. You must pay attention to several things. Perhaps one of the most critical mistakes a lot of restaurant owners make is that they try to continually make their food better. If there aren't enough customers, they try to make the food better. Why? They think that the better their food is, the more customers will like the restaurant and will come back. That's partly true, but it is mostly not. Restaurant owners should focus instead on the rest of their business. Accounting, inventory, advertising, vendors, etc. all need the owner's attention, too. These deserve equal amounts of time, if not more, than the food quality does.
Large, chain restaurants often have mediocre food, while great restaurants, with delicious food, often go out of business. Have you ever noticed that? The reason is because these large chain restaurants are not built to have excellent food. They are built to feed people. The quality of their food is an important element, yes, but it is not the only element. In terms of the best restaurant, the big chain restaurants are the best restaurants, because the whole restaurant works well. Smaller restaurants may have delicious food, but the rest of their restaurant business may be lacking. For example, their inventory system may be inefficient and lack a system to track everything, or their accounting system may not even be there at all.
Starting a restaurant sounds like an insane idea for most people. That's probably because, for most people, it is an insane idea. You're probably thinking, "Don't most restaurants fail?" Yes, they do. But, that's not a problem. Most restaurants fail because they are opened by outstanding chefs, which is the problem. It is a problem because restaurants should not be started by excellent chefs, but by excellent businessmen. Restaurants, although they deal with food, are not a job for chefs, but for businessmen. Restaurants are forms of business. Now, don't get me wrong. Restaurants are about food, too. That's why your delicious food is reason to start a restaurant. It's your turn to become a businessman, though.
Most of you like to cook at home; some of you don't, but chances are, given the opportunity and the right recipe, even you can make a fine meal or two. Probably most of this food is enjoyed by you, your family, and/or your friends. If this is true, then,what makes you think that you are the only ones who will enjoy it? Why don't you start a restaurant? More restaurants need to be opened that have good quality food, as there are so many out there now with just mediocre food. Your great cooking expertise will be a great thing to have in a restaurant. If you make delicious food, then start a restaurant!