I was honored to moderate a panel discussion on best practices for employers to manage their workforces.  On the panel was Andrea Borgen, owner of Barcito, Edith Quintero, West Cost People & Development for Soho House & Co., and Jamie Boalbey, Director of Operations for Pitfire Pizza.  While the discussion had a focus on restaurant operations, the lessons are applicable to almost every type of business.  This Friday’s Five review the top five points I took away from our discussion:

1. Restaurant operators of all sizes face similar issues. Large or small, the key issues for a successful company are employees and company culture. 

2. Tipping policies are still a primary concern for restaurants.

3. Company culture is key:

  • To build culture, the company must do what it says it is going to do.
  • Utilize technology to communicate with employees. For example, Workplace on Facebook can be a cost-effective tool.

4. Hiring and recruiting are critical to a company’s success:

  • Connecting with applicants quickly and on a personal level helps recurring efforts. Two to three interviews during the interview process provides good interaction with the applicants.  Contacting references is critical.
  • Don’t let good applicants leave the interview without knowing what the next step is in the interview process.
  • Retention starts with the first interview. The interview process must ensure there is a match, not just from the company’s prospective, but does the applicant agree with the company’s culture?
  • But it does not stop there, and employees need continual training and engagement.

5. There are pros and cons to third party delivery platforms.

  • If your restaurant is not a fast-casual restaurant, the food may not travel well, but the service does open other markets for the restaurants.  This is incremental business that if a restaurant does not capture, it will go somewhere else.

In the coming weeks, we will have the full discussion available on our podcast (iTunes, Spotify, and Stitcher) and our YouTube channel.  Subscribe to avoid missing any content and updates.