I have had more than a handful of consulting clients who have done very well for themselves outside of the hospitality industry, and for whatever reason, probably something related to the existence of the Food Network, they think it would be a good idea to own a restaurant.
An old saying
There is an old saying often shared with the future restaurant owner:
“How do you make a small fortune owning a restaurant?”
“Start with a big fortune.”
Having worked in this industry for 30 years, or so, I often find it baffling why any one with a head on their shoulders would want to get in to this business.
Let’s see now…
You have made millions in some other business, and now you think, in your more advanced years, that it would be fun to open a restaurant. What planet have you been on?
I find there to be one universal truth when it comes to these folks: They have no idea what they are getting in to. I know I have mentioned before that it is in many ways similar to other businesses. You must drive sales and control costs.
The similarities end there
Looking in from the outside makes it look simple enough, but those of us on the inside, know better. There are just SSSOOO many details to consider. Just dealing with the human resource angle is enough to send a person to the rubber room in a straight jacket.
Not only are people a bit crazy for wanting to get in to this business, but those already in the business are more than a bit off their rockers, too.
Drinking on the job, theft, unreliability, are just a few of the problems that one will encounter.
If that didn’t stop you
So, if what I’ve said up to now doesn’t dissuade you. there are many things for you to think about if you still plan on moving forward with this hairbrained scheme.
There are a million details and you need to think of every one of them. Ahead of time. You must be able to anticipate everything, because when you are in the thick of it you will be thrown many curveballs.
If you miss just one detail, it can have a cascading effect on the big picture. I recommend a couple of very important things to remember:
- Hire wisely
- Create systems and controls
I have written on this before…
I feel the most important element of this is listening to that gut feeling. Does this person seem like a good fit, or are they cray cray?
Systems and controls
You cannot expect top performances from employees if there is no guideline in place for them. How can they do a good job if they are not sure what the job is?
Obviously this post doesn’t even scratch the surface. So, all I can say before you dive in is to do your best due diligence. Think through everything you can and then when that doesn’t work, ASK FOR HELP!