Embrace The Suck Blog

7 Rules for a Kick Ass Restaurant

mindset operations Oct 15, 2017

Do you want a better restaurant? Now, don't answer so fast. I really want you to thinking about the deep implications of the answer. A lot of people want more, few are willing to go past their comfort zone to get more and be more. Your comfort zone is easy and let's be honest...it's comfortable.

Nothing great ever happened from being in your comfort zone. Eating Doritos in a bean bag chair drinking a soda while watching Top Chef might be the good life for some. For others that is just the slow death of dreams and potential.

So, if you want your restaurant to kick ass then you have to be willing to go for it and go all in. Over the years I have seen the patterns of success and the traits that lead to failure. I myself have had struggles when I deviate from the path. The following seven rules are tested and proven to give you the groundwork needed to escape the cult of average and blast into the realm of outstanding.

I love that word. Outstanding. To me it means to stand out from the...

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3 Management Theories You Need to Understand as a Restaurant Owner

Uncategorized Oct 09, 2017

I am all about peak performance. For the last 37 years I have dedicated myself to what the Japanese call, Kaizen.  It is more than just a word, it is a philosophy of constant and never ending improvement. I read as much as I can on a variety of subjects. Cookbooks, personal development, business management, NLP, if it move me forward or helped me learn something that could help a restaurant coaching client of mine I was immersed in it.

Along the way, I came upon some interesting management theories that actually have really helped me become a better leader and person. Perhaps, they can help you as well get more from yourself and your team.

Parkinson's Law

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."

This management theory was a gold mine when I discovered it. Especially when it came to managing the culinary team! Parkinson's law basically explains the inherent laziness that most people succumb to. Basically it comes down to this, if I give a cook eight...

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Why Your Staff Hates Your Manager

Uncategorized Sep 12, 2017

You go out of your way to recruit and hire a great manager. They had experience and excellent references. Besides, you needed a manager badly. During interview they said the right things, was very polite, well groomed, they even looked you in the eye when they shook your hand.

They start and you train them. Maybe not as much as you should have, however you justify it by telling yourself, “they have experience, they’ll be able to figure it out.” You have visions of the team coming together, sales increasing, and profits flowing into your bank.

Two months later, things haven’t seemed to become any better and you’re not sure why. Well here are the reasons why your staff hates your manager:

1.    They do not have better skills than the staff.

In the restaurant world, actions do speak louder than words. If your new manager does not have superior skills to the people they supervised, then strike one. It’s hard to give respect to someone...

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Creating a Restaurant Marketing Plan in 4 Steps

marketing Sep 12, 2017

Are you marketing your restaurant as much as you should be? You might be doing some marketing on social media channels, however, if you are like the majority of restaurants out there it is far from effective. Why? You don't have a solid marketing plan. You are just dabbling with marketing. Time to jump all in.

Why Don't You Market More

You probably have a very long list of reasons why you just cannot market more. These list of reasons have become chains that hold you down and stuck in the middle of the market where all the other restaurants that don't market enough are. The middle is that placed saved for being average. The last thing you want to be is average is the restaurant industry. That is like being trapped in a room with very hungry animals and you are the food supply. Being average and in the middle makes you a commodity.

Commodities are traded by price comparison. So, if you don't stand out to your guests, you just blend in. If you want to see the effect of just being like...

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5 Things That Are Killing Your Restaurant From Growing

There is a strange duality of restaurants. The restaurant industry can be extremely fulfilling and rewarding. There are times when you will be over the top and never question why you choose this path.

The restaurant industry can also be relentless and merciless at times. There are times when you will feel like the weight of it all is crushing down upon you and you might even want to quit…don’t. When the weight of it seems heavy, then it’s time to examine the five keys areas that could be causing this pressure and how to break free from it.

1.    Your Social Media Marketing

Social media is here to stay and you’ll need to embrace that and use it to keep your brand top of mind. The problem with most restaurants social media is that they use it to sell. They post the same boring stuff, usually their specials. The problem is that every other restaurant in your market is posting the same thing, their specials. If you don't dare to stand out in your...

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3 Dangerous Restaurant Management Traps to Avoid

There was a post the other day on the Internet about a famous chef who is ordered by a judge to pay back over $5 million in tips they skimmed from their staff. What drives people to cheat their own staff out of money? Two simple answers. One is greed. The other is that it was easy path.

Restaurant owners and operators tend to focus on things that they know, understand, or feel they have control over. Let’s clarify for the record that control is only an illusion. And we all know that the restaurant industry is a very fluid and ever changing enigma.

Think of your restaurant like a world champion team. You recruit the best players you can. You put people in positions that play to their strengths and talent. You practice and practice for as many scenarios as possible. Then you go out every game and play all in.

Restaurants get in trouble when they go down the easy path.

Again, let’s clarify…”There is no easy path in the restaurant industry!”

Taking easy...

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3 Master Branding Lessons from Wolfgang Puck

branding Sep 12, 2017

You know the name. The Austrian born chef came to the United States in 1973 where he worked at La Tour Restaurant in Indianapolis. He moved to LA in 1975 and quickly became the chef to the Hollywood elite. From his renown restaurant Spago, he has built an empire. Was it luck or well executed branding?

To work inside the organization is demanding. Wolf and his team expect the best from everyone and all times. There is no measure for error and nothing is left to chance. Recipes are developed, tested, and retested until they meet the expectations of Wolfgang and Lee Hefter his executive corporate chef for over 25 years.

If you can take in the message behind the obsession for perfection, you’ll see a brand that at its core has some key elements to its success. If you work in an organization like that you can walk away with a PhD in branding. You just need to open your eyes to the lessons found in everyday activities.

Always Protect the Brand

This should be the mantra of every...

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Bring Some Badass to Your Leadership Skills

My days as a Pararescueman taught me more about teamwork, adversity, peak performance and mental toughness than I ever realized at the time. That is what makes my coaching so unique and why I get extreme results for my clients, I am going to help you develop a mindset of an Elite Special Operations Warrior!

While the battlefield and business are quite different, they share more similarities than you would imagine. Both require you to develop yourself to reach the top. Both require discipline and grit to survive adversity. Both require that you accept NO limitations as limitations. Average people tell you to be afraid of the dark and those things that go bump in the night. The elite are the ones that bump back against dark forces that would have you play small in the world. When you adopt this level of thinking your motto becomes: You are either on my side, by my side, or in my f*cking way! Choose wisely.

People on your team either rise to your level or they get the f*ck out of your...

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