The ability to recruit the top talent in the industry is one of the biggest ingredients of success for any restaurant. As the owner, you need to hire a restaurant manager that not only has the ability to run your restaurant efficiently, but also the ability to attract high-performing employees.
To ensure the best success for your restaurant, don’t rush the process of hiring your restaurant manager. Take the time to thoroughly get to know each candidate and figure out exactly what your restaurant needs.
Here are some tips to help out. These are the 8 top restaurant manager qualifications every restaurant owner should know about:
Ability to Work Long Hours
Restaurants are a unique business where there are no set 9-5 hours so it won’t fit to hire a restaurant manager who can only work on a limited time frame. They also need to flexible because while the dining hours might be Noon to 10 p.m., they will also be required to come in the morning for food shipments and to prepare for the rush of patrons. You are depending on your manager to run everything for you so they need to be flexible about their work hours.
While there is nothing wrong about working your way up to the top by your bootstraps, having a college education is a definite asset at the managerial level. Many colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degrees in restaurant management and a business degree can also teach a lot of business principles and critical thinking that is essential in the restaurant biz. An associate degree or certification from a technical institute also looks good on a resume.
Good with People
A quiet, introverted person will probably not be the best person for the restaurant manager jobs. While as manager you are not usually serving the patrons directly, they do have to field the complaints and of course you are training and handling issues with your employees. They will also probably be doing the rest of the hiring for you as well. Look for someone who is comfortable talking to everybody and has strong communication and hospitality skills. They need to be able to inspire people around them.
Strong Restaurant Experience
Look for candidates who have been in the industry for a while and who have worked for other restaurants who have similar type of menu and clientele. Ask specifically about their experience with payroll, licensing, food ordering and inspections. That way you know they can handle everything at your place. Ask candidates how they specifically improved efficiency at each place they worked.
A Creative Thinker
Innovation is the life blood of business even restaurants. You need to be able to move with the times and not be afraid to make changes whether they are procedural, in the kitchen or in the dining room, if they are going to help your restaurant be successful. Hiring an innovative and creative thinker as your restaurant manager will help make sure that your restaurant does not just grow stagnate.
Strong Organizational Skills
Another important skill to look for is organizational skills. Your restaurant manager needs to be able to juggle a lot of responsibilities so organization and time management are a must. As a restaurant manager, their duties are going to be so diverse, one hand dealing with customer and employee complaints, on the other hand dealing with the nitty gritty details of ordering food and supplies and making sure all the licenses are up to date. So the best way to make sure no shoe is dropped is to allot time for each of the duties. Someone who is more reactionary in their approach will have a more difficult time handling everything.
Good with Social Media
There is a lot of promotion involved in the restaurant business so having a manager that is social media savvy can be very beneficial. Even if you hire a separate person to do social media, it is a good for your manager to know the latest trends, what the best way to engage the public is, and to how to handle crises on social media so he or she can give the specialist good direction.
A Food & Drink Connoisseur
The restaurant manager is typically not the chef, but he or she should still be a food and drink connoisseur. The manager helps shape menus and what drinks to order so you want someone who knows qualities to look for and keep up with the latest trends.
Besides hiring a talented restaurant manager, as owner you have ultimate responsibility for all parts of the restaurant. Here are some things you should keep in mind as the owner:
- Returning customers are a sign that you are doing something right and you want them to keep coming back and to bring their friends and families. To reward them, offer special incentives like discount coupons, special happy hours and other special events. Thank them for choosing you.
- Have an overall vision for your restaurant. What is the décor? The atmosphere? How will you present the food? How do you want customer-staff interaction to look like? Allow your overall vision guide your every decision to keep you on the right track.
- Focus on what makes you unique. If sustainability is really important to you, then make it a platform for your restaurant. If you pride yourself on providing everything farm to table, then emphasize that in your marketing and social outreach. Focus on what makes you unique and you will draw in people who share similar values.
- Don’t underestimate a hard day’s work. You can’t just expect your employees to work harder, you need to be working hard alongside them. Running your own business can seem like a thankless job of long hours, lots of stress and little downtime so it is important to never let go of your vision and to keep on trucking. If you are only half way invested in this business, then it will never grow like you want it too.
For more information about hiring a restaurant manager, contact MBB Management. They are the top hospitality management company in Philadelphia and can help you find the ideal candidates.