Today, I am sharing my game-changing tips for getting your first week as a restaurant manager off to a great start.

To learn more please either watch the video above, read the transcript or listen to the podcast below.

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Read the Video Transcript by Clicking Here...


Today is more specifically for restaurant managers, future managers, those who just got a new job or looking for a new one. Let’s talk about how to get your first week on the job off to a great start with some tips. 

Tips to start your first week as manager

The Do’s:

  1. Prepare your attitude. Make sure your attitude is in check. Some of us in this business have a little bit of a hot temper and some of us are a little sensitive to criticism. I know when it’s a new job we’re a little better at that but I mean really, just take some deep breaths, calm down and be prepared for anything. You don’t know what you’re going to walk into your first week, maybe it’s better than you expected or worse.
  2. Do your research. By this point, you should have a job description, eaten at the restaurant you’re going to be working at a couple of times, and be pretty familiar with it. If you haven’t, there’s nothing wrong with calling the owner ahead of your first day and saying “Hey can you send over the job description?” or “Can you send over some expectations you have for me in the first couple of weeks?”. If you haven’t eaten at the restaurant yet, ask if you can come in for lunch or dinner, try a few things on the menu and experience the restaurant. Also, read some reviews on Yelp, TripAdvisor or talk to people in the community.
  3. Build rapport, not respect. Respect is going to come over time (more on that here), rapport is a quick connection with someone. To build rapport is to find out what motivates your team. Talk to them about it. If they’re kind of leaning over, then lean over a little bit. If they’re super excited and in your face, be a little more in their face. But don’t be pushed off of what they’re doing. Instead, model them and make them feel comfortable with you at the beginning and find out what motivates them. Then clear the path for them, ask how you can better support them. One of my questions is “Wow that seems really challenging and I can see how that would have been difficult for you. How could I better support you?” and make sure to take notes about their answer.
  4. Be a manager quickly. Don’t wait 3 or 4 days before you start working. The work is continuous and the restaurant keeps moving, just because it’s your first day or week doesn’t mean that it’s the same for everyone else. The restaurant still has customers, has money to make and jobs to do – so jump right in there! Don’t just shadow over everybody for five days, start managing! If you see things that you know aren’t right, fix them and make changes but be careful there.

The Don’ts:

  1. Don’t say “Now that I’m in charge…” or anything similar. 
  2. Don’t make immediate changes. This may sound counter to ‘Be a manager quickly’. If you see something that’s wrong ask questions, get involved and don’t sit on the sidelines, but don’t be too quick to start changing things either.
  3. Don’t criticize the past, saying “I can’t believe that’ll manager used to do that, it’s never gonna happen again”, “I can’t believe you used to serve food like that, we’re going to fix that right away”. Just don’t be that guy or gal.
  4. Don’t constantly reference your past work, saying things like “When I worked at so and so we were able to fix this” or “we were able to do it like that”. The rest of the team doesn’t really care about that. All they care about is how you are going to help them move their goals forward or if you are going to stand in their way (which is what I meant about building rapport).

I hope that today’s video is helpful so you can crush your first week on the job as a restaurant manager. Remember, be a boss! I look forward to bringing you another video next week, have a wonderful day!

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