In this blog we’ll look at how good communication techniques can help your Restaurant succeed.
There are over 86,000 restaurants in the UK, and your staff members have chosen to work at your particular establishment. Not only do you want to provide them with good working experiences, but you also want to give your customers the best service possible.
All that can be done if you learn some excellent communication techniques. This can also help you grow as a person. Here are some key ones you need to know as a restaurant owner.
Ask for Feedback
What better way to communicate with your employees than to open up honest and transparent communication? It may be tough to hear at first, but some constructive criticism can be good for helping you improve both yourself and your restaurant.
For example, your employees may feel like you don’t staff enough people on a certain day, or that you have late closing hours that aren’t accommodating of their schedules.
Take feedback very seriously and take the proper steps to address these concerns. An open door policy means your workers will be more comfortable communicating with you. This can raise workplace morale and help you retain your staff for longer.
Be Calm and Collected in Dealing with Difficult Customers
There are always going to be times when you’ll have dissatisfied customers, but there are those who are in another category. No matter what you do, it doesn’t seem to appease them, and they’re set on being cross with you.
While it can be tempting to give them a piece of your mind, that’ll only result in bad publicity for your restaurant. Instead, keep your cool, and try to explain things in a calm manner to them.
Really listen to what the customer is saying and try to sympathise. Sometimes, they’re just looking for a fight, so don’t give them what they want. Try to offer them some fair compensation, such as a free dessert.
When other patrons see how well you’re dealing with a difficult customer, they’ll appreciate it. You’ll show your restaurant has great company values. This is sure to garner their return visits.
Establish a Method for Scheduling
For the most part, you can rely on your employees to clock in on the shifts you’ve scheduled them on. But there will be times when they’re ill or want to go on holiday. Be clear that so long as they communicate these things with you as advanced as possible, your staff won’t get in trouble for asking for time off.
To avoid chaos and confusion, make it a policy that all shift swaps have to go through a manager (or you). That way, when someone doesn’t show up, the appropriate actions can be taken against the right person.
Create Communication Channels for Each Team
Handling feedback and requests from all your staff members can be challenging, especially if you have a sizable workforce. Make it easier on everyone by creating communication channels for each team.
For example, you can set up different inboxes (or physical boxes) for your staff to drop emails in (or cards). You can then tackle things by teams. If you assign a different day for addressing different team boxes, it’ll show your employees that you care about what they have to say and that you treat everyone fairly.
Set Ground Rules
Work can be a fun place to be at, but at its core, it’s still work. That means there are certain rules to be followed. For example, everyone must show up to work early, and if they’re late by over 10 minutes, they’ll get one strike against them.
When you have ground rules and communicate them at the beginning of employment, this gives your staff no room to use “I didn’t know” as an excuse. Be very clear about what the consequences are if they don’t follow rules.
When you’ve established clear rules about your workplace, you have to be firm in enforcing them. You may have a policy of “3 strikes, you’re out,” but an employee has well over 5 strikes and they’re still employed. Worse yet, they haven’t even suffered any consequences yet.
Other employees may see this and be unhappy. If that staff member can break all the rules and still be employed, why should they follow rules then? Also, they may think you’re playing favourites, which can cause more displeasure.
Once you have your ground rules, make sure you always enforce them. If you can’t be expected to enforce your own policies, how can you expect your managers to?
Have Your Managers Be Your Eyes and Ears
Sometimes, staff members can feel apprehensive about approaching a restaurant owner about their questions and concerns. As a result, they may turn to your managers as confidants.
Establish good relationships with your managers and encourage them to share key issues with you. Ensure them that you’re not trying to punish anyone, but instead, you’re trying to better the restaurant to make your staff more comfortable.
A good idea is to have your managers submit weekly reports where they can raise issues with you if necessary. That way, employees can be heard, but in an anonymous way if they wish for it to be that way.
Put These Communication Techniques to Good Use
With better communication techniques as the owner of a restaurant, you’ll have the skills to run it like a well-oiled machine. Not only that, but your employees will respect you as well. When you have the respect of those who work for you, it’ll make for an easier and even fun time!
If you’d like to improve your services further, think about getting a new POS system. Interested? Then book a demo with us today.