STARTUP Realistic expectations about the startup process

Having realistic expectations and being properly prepared is an important part of the startup process.  If you’re ill prepared this can lead to problems without a doubt. 

As a restaurant owner (or owner of any business), you’ll be putting out a multitude of fires throughout the day from employee issues, client issues, payroll, taxes, marketing, scheduling and more.  You might be faced with portioning and control issues in your bar, buffet or line.  You might be faced with employees who roll tickets in your buffet.  You might not even know what rolling tickets is. 

So here’s the thing, you need to think a lot about opening your concept before you take that step.  Are you ready to give up your evenings and weekends?  Just because your restaurant closes at 9 p.m. doesn’t mean you go home five minutes later.  Do you know what your server closing duties are?  Do you know what your dishwasher’s duties will be?  Wait, don’t know why you would have servers with closing duties?  Return to Go and don’t take $200… this monopoly game is for real!

There are a lot of skills and characteristics you will need to present and learn to skillfully run your own dream restaurant.  Be realistic if you don’t have this skillset and put together your dream team of consultants, mentors and friends who can help you in these areas.  First of all you should have a great Business Sense- generally gained through managing on someone else’s dime.  Simply going to college or working on the line is not the same as hours spent in management. 

So with this experience of managing a restaurant or bar for someone else you will have learned a lot about a good manager and the traits of patience, flexibility, positive speech, positive thought processes, team building, crisis management, first aid, accounting, proccesses and time management.  Know where your weak areas are and surround yourself as you build your team of mentors, consultants, management with staff that compliment you.  Get training in areas you don’t have yet.  Be realistic about the hours your are going to put into building your dreams.  Invest in yourself.  It’s more than just opening your facility.  It’s more than just buying the equipment.  It’s more than creating a regular schedule.