Training your staff costs money, but just think about how much a poorly-trained employee will cost you in the long run. Worst case scenario is pretty bad…a no-nothing employee can cost you customers. Then they tell their friends what lousy service they got, and you loose prospective customers. You can’t afford this, but you can afford to properly train your staff. Creating a strong training shedule is essential to success. Here are some training schedule tips courtesy of One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment…
• STEPS OF SERVICE: this includes from when the guest walks in to how to offer them the dessert menu.
• PRODUCT TRAINING: this includes information on the restaurant menu, beverages, concept, etc.
• POINT OF SALE SYSTEM OPERATION: duh.
• MENU TASTINGS: this is probably the most enjoyable part of training and will also give your employees that ability to better recommend menu items.
• EQUIPMENT TRAINING: this includes hot and cold line equipment, proper storage techniques (first in, first out), the dishwasher, drink machines, etc. A broad range of equipment training will provide you with a highly versatile staff able to help each other out in a pinch.
This kind of cross-training is super important. A fry cook should be able to handle the griddle, and vice-versa. This will save you many troubles in the long run.
• SANITATION, CLEANING, & ENERGY USAGE: pretty self-explanatory. Training them right in these departments will save you money on utilities and wastage.
You should coordinate front of house and back of house specific training. Cross-over training should be done after this. Train everyone on the same restaurant concepts though, to create a cohesive, smoothly functioning unit.
For new restaurants, a dry run should be conducted about a week before your grand opening. A dry run (or, soft opening, training run, etc.) is when employees can invite friends and family, investors, consultants, etc. to eat in the restaurant. They should all be treated like regular diners on a regular business night. Have them order off of the menu, have the kitchen staff prepare their dishes…you know, the whole shebang.
The only thing different with a dry run is that the diners aren’t paying. The run is done for training purposes only, to see how everyone and everything works together. See what works and what doesn’t – what needs to be ironed out. There’s bound to be a few aspects that need to be improved upon before your actual opening. Do as many dry runs as it takes to fine tune your staff.
Don’t forget that training doesn’t just end when an employee collects their first paycheck. training is an ongoing process. Train your staff on new specials, drinks, etc. It’s wise to hold mandatory meetings regularly to keep everyone on the same page. Go over all important information and use the meetings as a chance for the staff to communicate to you any problems, misunderstandings, etc.
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