5 NEW Restaurant Manager Mistakes

You’ve decided that you would like to hire a new restaurant manager. Before you contact an agency, put an ad in the window or put an ad out, have a look around and you may just see your NEW restaurant manager. There are a number of reasons to select an existing staff member, such as:

  • They are often excited at the opportunity to move up within your establishment.
  • You have invested the time in training them so they know your business.
  • They have learned your company culture and proven they are a good fit already.
  • They are often less expensive than a seasoned pro.

When promoting an existing team member, there are 5 mistakes they are most likely going to make:

  1. Remaining One of The Team
    Problem: Generally, the employee you promote to management will have excelled in their existing position and shown leadership qualities. The problem comes in when they still want to be seen as a “buddy” by their peers.

    Solution: Sit down with your new manager and explain the rules, this includes not going out to party with staff. Explain to them that they do not need the staff members to like them to do staff but rather to respect them.

  2. Not Asking for Help
    Problem: Most restaurants don’t have proper training programs in place. This means new managers learn through making mistakes and receiving negative feedback. In time this will create a negative working environment for the new manager and they may not ask for help for fear of looking stupid or feeling the wrath of upper management.

    Solution: Put the right training and management tools in place to help your new recruit do their job efficiently. Your tools could include the following:
    • An operations manual detailing policies, systems and procedures documents explaining how they are to be carried out.
    • A management training system which is based on the specific job which will teach the manager what their duties are, how well they need to be done and when they need to be done by.
    • Detailed checklists for opening and closing and also create a checklist for management.
    • A positive working environment where staff can be comfortable to ask for help.

  3. Me Against Them Mentality
    Problem: When an employee moves up in the ranks, they may bring with them baggage from their old position. This baggage could include animosity between a front of house staff member and one or more back of house staff members.

    Solution: Create detailed checklists for each position so everyone knows what they need to do to fulfil their duties.

  4. Dating the Help
    Problem: The restaurant business is a social one and often people are attracted to those who are confident and in a leadership role which creates a lot of opportunity for dating within the restaurant. The trouble comes in where it goes awry and/or is done too often and can lead to a hostile working environment and make peers uncomfortable. This behaviour could also create a quid pro quo situation where dating is used to get benefits such as better shifts or higher wages. Regardless, this is now a workplace where sexual harassment is taking place.

    Solution: Sit down with your manager and advise them to be weary because if sexual harassment does occur, even if it is unintended, they could lose their jobs.

  5. Not Looking The Part
    Problem: You’ve promoted a staff member and they’re not dressing the part. There was no way of knowing this before hand as most line employees would arrive in their uniforms as opposed to in their streetwear.

    Solution: To avoid this happening at all, you need to make it clear at training level how managers are expected to dress for their role.

Put the right systems in place and you can turn a great line employee into an exceptional manager.