With the start of the brand new year just behind us, it's not too late to think about resolutions on how you want to improve and be a better manager in 2018. While there is never a bad time to set new goals, the beginning of the year provides the perfect time to reflect and gather yourself after surviving a busy holiday season. If you aren't sure where to start, here are some smart resolutions that will help you become a rockstar bar manager in 2018:
Q: Are you running the right pour cost?
A: It’s not that your pour cost is wrong, you're probably working your pour cost out correctly. The problem is... What are you comparing it to? How do you know it is good? See More...
You may let a sleeping dog lie, but you’re going to want your alcohol to move.
No matter how successful your bar is, chances are if you look through your inventory, you can find some dead stock—and you may be scratching your head as to how to get it off your shelves. Loosely defined, dead stock is a product that takes over six months to deplete.
Bars and restaurants have a notoriously high turnover rate, but that doesn't mean that you can't attract and retain top talent who will become a selling point for your establishment. If you are competing with other bars in the area to win over the best talent and consistently losing out, it may be time to consider a different approach. For starters, don't be so hard on yourself. Certain bartenders may be more drawn to the environment of a swanky rooftop bar versus a venue with more of a neighborhood bar feel.
August is notoriously a slow month in the restaurant business. People are on vacation and spending more time grilling out in their own backyards. While there are ways to try and increase traffic to your restaurant, you can also adopt the strategy of working to get the most out of the customers who do stop by. Training your staff to upsell items is an easy way to drive up the check average and increase sales during slow periods. With a little training, your team can become experts salespeople, which will also translate into bigger tips for them.
Unless your restaurant is located in a busy summer vacation destination, July and August can be notoriously slow months. People are busy traveling and enjoying the weather with backyard barbecues instead of eating out at their local restaurants. While you might not be able to drastically increase traffic to your restaurant, there are some steps you can take to bring in more patrons during this slow season.
For those who haven't ever worked in a bar, it can be all too easy to assume that owning or managing an establishment is just one big party. Everyone just hangs out and does shots with customers, right? You know better. In fact, you have probably spent hours in the stock room counting bottles for inventory long past closing the door behind your last patron.
Today we are going to go over one of the most important steps in bar inventory analysis for all bar and restaurant owners.
What’s a good number? I can’t begin to tell you how often I get the question. In our day-to-day operations, or out and about, at a convention, even at a party. When someone finds out what I do, they ask “What’s a good number for (blank)?” I also get inquiries from operators, owners, industry people and vendors. So here are some of my answers to the more commonly asked questions.
There are two kinds of bar managers in this world: those who encourage the free pour and those who are wholeheartedly against it. While each side of the argument certainly has some valid points, a lot of it might just come down to proper training. The free pour is a skill that needs to be practiced and perfected so that the drinks still taste great, customers are happy, and the bar is still turning a healthy profit.
Bar Practices: The Best and the Worst
A well run, profitable bar reflects a disciplined code of conduct. When you establish a clear set of rules and expectations, you set the scene for success. When you communicate your expectations both verbally and in writing, you’ll leave no room for doubt. You’re also able to create a benchmark for performance measurement, incentive programs, staff rewards or disciplinary action.
Even small expenses can add up over the course of a day as your bar or restaurant pours hundreds of drinks and serves countless meals. From putting fewer nuts and berries on salads to not salting pasta water to preserve the life of pots, some businesses are more than happy to cut corners if it means more profit. While sacrificing quality in the name of savings may be a short-term solution, you will have a lot more to worry about if customers stop coming to your establishment. Fortunately, there are some ways how top bars and restaurants cut costs while ensuring quality isn't impacted, that will not only preserve existing customers, but work to increase the number of patrons.
Introducing a new menu or running a new promotion can help reduce sitting inventory and increase sales, but how do you know just how successful your efforts have been? It is important to identify and use Key Performance Indicators to measure whether you are getting the most out of your time and money.
A great mixologist will bring plenty of creativity to their drinks, but they can make even more profitable cocktails by using a little bit of data to further inform their ingredient choices. While it may sound counterintuitive to argue that crunching numbers can be a tool for creativity, today's technology allows these two areas to blend seamlessly. Before you put together your next drink menu, here are some ways you can be more strategic about designing delicious drinks.
This blog is about the most important aspect of sales and inventory control.
Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of important steps and procedures a manager or owner must do and put in place to make sure his or her inventory and sales are correct and nothing is missing. And if I want to be literal, clearly locking the doors at nighttime is the most important step!
As a bar manager, your afternoons, evenings and early morning hours are spent trying to create a unique experience for patrons so that they become loyal customers and brand ambassadors. While this might sound like a glamorous gig to outsiders, you know that it also involves hard work, much of which can be downright monotonous. Inventory alone can be enough to make you reconsider your career choice. But what if you could streamline and simplify the worst parts of your job? In a world where cars can now drive themselves, there is no reason you should ever spend hours counting and measuring bottles by hand. If you are, it is time to hire an inventory control company and take back your free time.
When a company grows to a certain size, the way its employees are managed must also evolve. Many bar operators start out as the sole owner/operator of their business, and they often fill a labor role while they pursue opportunities to expand, open new venues, and create more value. This provides the owners with some level of assurance that things will be done a certain way because they are physically there overseeing operations. However, when a business starts expanding into different cities, success is less determined by the abilities of the owner and is more so about the abilities of the people hired. Despite the input from some management consultants who theorize about what makes good managers, bar management must be approached in a sometimes unconventional way due to the unique nature of a bar or nightclub environment.
Competition in the market has become fiercer than ever, so it is of upmost importance to operators that they ensure their customer service is of the highest quality. Delivering exceptional customer service is more than just making sure that food and drinks get out on time. Exceptional customer service is about going the extra mile and being ultra sensitive to guest needs. This becomes particularly challenging as your organization grows to include multiple venues, and it becomes nearly impossible for the owners to keep tabs on how their staffs are performing on a day-to-day basis with each guest.
Owning and managing a bar can blur the lines between night and day, making you feel like you live at work. From late nights closing the place to early mornings spent counting inventory and preparing for the evening ahead, long hours can begin to take their toll. The good news is that there are specific steps you can take to avoid the black hole of bar management that threatens to consume all your time. By working smarter, you can not only enjoy more freedom, but also focus your attention at work on the things that are most important to you.