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Wake Up Restaurant Gods

Wake up the Restaurant Gods! (You need them)

Ah, the Restaurant Gods.  That weird and mighty force that shows the science of “equal and opposite reaction” and the mystery of how cutting a server makes the restaurant busy.

I was introduced to the Restaurant Gods in 2005 when the restaurant I was working for at the time was having some service issues, so like usual, we had a meeting.

(Except after analyzing the word meeting I now realized that we never had a meeting, only a mastermind group.)

All the servers and the manager would come together and talk about the issues of service.

The entire group of servers would come together and ask and answer questions like, “What do you think is wrong with service? How can we fix it? What are some of your ideas? What do you think we are good at? What isn’t streamlined”?

The dinner shift after that mastermind went amazing.  I mean A-MAZ-ING!  We got slammed pretty hard and were running a tight ship.  Everyone was working to their capacity.  No time to do crap that didn’t matter. Not too many people working to think that things would get done if you didn’t do them.

There were no kinks.

There were no problems.

Service was streamlined and exceptional, busy and tight.

I went up to my manager after the shift and said “Holy shit, we got rocked tonight and it went awesome.  We killed it”!

He said, “Tonight went great.  It was the meeting, we woke up the Restaurant Gods”.

The Restaurant Gods?

Hmm.  I like that idea.  So over the next 8 years I payed attention to what woke them up, what they liked and what they disliked.

  • I noticed how when two people that didn’t get along, talked (or even yelled at each other), and tackled their issues, their work relationship improved, therefor the work environment improved.
  • I noticed how when the owner was in a good mood, shifts went smoother.
  • I noticed how, over time, a positive, knowledgeable and helpful manager, steers the emotional direction of an entire service team to be happier, more knowledgeable and more prone to want to help others.
  • I noticed how when a server went out of their way to learn about something about food or drink, the server would (oddly) be asked about it by a guest or many guests.
  • I noticed how when I was in a good mood and lightly directed my team on tasks to accomplish, things quickly got accomplished.
  • I noticed how servers that were happy to be at work had happier sections and rarely got in the weeds.

Good, positive, progressive action creates a good, progressive and positive restaurants.

  • On the other side I noticed that when two people didn’t get along and didn’t talk about it, their hate grew and the negative energy created was as tangible to the entire team as humidity.
  • I noticed how when the owner was in a bad mood the whole shift went to shit.
  • I noticed how, over time, a negative, ignorant and lazy manager, creates negative, ignorant and lazy servers.
  • I noticed how when a server didn’t care enough to learn, they were dead weight to the team and no one liked working with them.
  • I noticed how when I was in a bad mood and gave hazy direction, my team was scatter brained, closed down and unhappy.
  • I noticed how unhappy servers got unhappy guests, complaints and were often weeded.

Bad, negative and stagnant behavior creates bad, negative and stagnant restaurants.

Want to be busy and make more money?  Cut a server.

Want to sell more whiskey?  Do a training session on whiskey! Talk about whiskey!! Drink whiskey!!!

Want to have stronger servers?  Don’t be afraid to set standards and let the weak servers go.  (Yes, fire the bad servers.)

Want to have dependable servers?  Depend on them for more.

Want excellent restaurant culture?  Be the island of culture you want and watch as people gravitate to you.

Wake up the Restaurant Gods!

They wake up to strength, communication and progressive attitudes.

They stay asleep for those who are lazy, those who don’t communicate and those who run overstaffed restaurants.

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