I see so many restaurant owners that start their own restaurants, yes myself included, because they are so passionate about what they do and passionate about food, wine and people. The excitement of this combined with the potential for a huge profit can result in an overabundance of exuberance, with much less practical and powerful planning.
A restaurant business must be more than just a passion, it must be a business, and with powerful business planning that is proved effective in hundreds of case studies. If you aren't making a profit, then you won't be in business for long, are you really so sure you will be making a profit? Oh hell, why not open two restaurants at once, as a friend of mine has done which was almost certainly a foolish move against EVERYONE'S advice.
I don't advise this. Start with one.
You are entering a VERY highly competitive market, and the odds of success are really very low. 9 out of 10 restaurants will fail worldwide each year. At least that is my estimate from my experience in the business, which has been my whole life, and my parents and their parents before them. My Great-Great-Great-Grandfather Papa Chiaro once said, "When you open a restaurant, it's like you are taking a DARE! We DARE you to try, but this business is TOUGH." He would say this, whittling on his wooden leg which he lost from a pizza oven explosion, which occurred right before his restaurant FAILED. No, just kidding.
The point is, everything you do should be built on a solid business foundation, and gives yourself EVERY edge, while all too often people approach the whole affair head on without a robust and proven effective protocol. Sure, you can throw money into a pit, or a boat, or a restaurant, but are you hoping to make a profit with your cafe? Are you GOING to make a profit with your restaurant? How do you know this? Are you doing everything you possibly can to increase the odds? Are you clear on your priorities and your best work and hiring practices? Do you have a strong business team to lay the foundation of your BUSINESS with you?
Lets assume you've done your market research, and have found a location SWARMING with customers ready to LINE UP. Can you handle the crowd? Are you sure? More likely, your location is NOT swarming with customers ready to line up, do you have a plan to build a swarm? A trickle even? A plan even? Maybe you don't even have the location yet, but you have the drive and the determination, and if you've read this far you are interested in launching a successful BUSINESS as well as a fun place for your friends to pop by for free food on the house.
Everything you do during your first year is absolutely critical to assure a resounding success. If you're not on the right track, your train WILL derail! I got so tired of seeing people's trains derailing, that I figured out the best train design and the best track. The best restaurant forms, checklists and restaurant employee handbooks. The best practices and the ones to avoid at all costs. I figured out what was most important, and what made those rare successful ventures work? Why do some restaurants make it while most do not?
This was at the core: if there are some "secrets" that can increase the odds significantly, I wanted to know them.
There are, and I do. Here's one:
Everything you do should be focused around short-term cash flow and long-term brand building. As long as you, and your employees, are focused on those 2 agenda items, you WILL significantly raise the odds of your success in both the short and the long term. With that firmly in mind as your mantra, I also recommend my full consultation to increase your odds even further, without a doubt. Not to sound negative, but, Yes, there are odds. The odds are against you without some key building blocks and decisions made correctly. Some key tools and wisdom can RAISE the odds. If you were in Vegas, at the roulette wheel. I help you place bets on a few #'s, not just one. If we were playing black jack, I'd make sure you had an ACE in your hand. If it was poker, I'd make sure you had 2 aces in your hand to start the game.
Start the game on track, wisely and effectively.
You have your concept, I'll help you make sure it flies!
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Jake provides extensive consultation to restaurant owners and managers which includes some powerful tools to supercharge your business protocol. For additional information, click this site on restaurant forms, restaurant checklists and restaurant employee handbook.
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