Learn From Your Mistakes

They tell me that you learn more from your mistakes than you do from your successes. If that is true, I have learned a lot.



As I consult with clients and lecture everyday to my poor students, I am reminded of all the mistakes I made through the years. The examples I write about in this blog are just more evidence of the things I did not do when I was in a position to.

When I talk about service issues when I eat out, it reminds me of  the times I watched servers under my care, make the same mistakes over and over and yet I did nothing about it.


It’s really all we can do. Take the mistakes we make, and do our best to try not to make them again. Of course, that does presume that we are going to be able to admit to our mistakes. This subject will probably require a whole other post on this subject.

Too many restaurateurs make this mistake. The whole notion that they are perfect and never really make mistakes. It does seem to permeate this restaurant business.

Let’s be honest

If we are truly being honest with ourselves, we know when we have done something correctly, and when we have not. I suggest this: At the end of each day look inward and see if there was anything you could have done differently.

Maybe you were a bit curt with one of your employees. Sure, that particular employee may be the one who tends to push your buttons, but it doesn’t matter. They are still your valued employee, and deserve your patience and mentorship.

Maybe you didn’t handle that corkage fee properly when the guest brought in 3 bottles of wine and you just had the server charge them, without any warning.

Maybe you were mean to the purveyor who dared to bring you the product you ordered during your lunch service. Yes, they should know better because you have told them before, but that doesn’t mean that you should yell at them.


At the end of the day look at what transpired and how you handled it. This is an extremely stressful business, and lots of time we are tested and very often we do not pass that test. We can all be better.




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