Let’s face it. Restaurant Week is like a week of Saturday night services (or in Denver’s case, 10 days long), and that includes everything that goes with a Saturday service:
- Long hours
- Tightened turn times
- Long hours
- A busy kitchen (making substitutions or special requests more difficult)
- Did I mention long hours?
Denver Restaurant Week is just days away, and I know your entire staff is prepping for the event.
Everyone in the restaurant is going to be busy, from front of house to back. I recently had the opportunity to hear from restaurant week veterans from local favorites such as Vesta Dipping Grill, Rioja, Euclid Hall, Root Down, Linger and more. Some of these experts have been doing restaurant week for 10 or more years, making them well versed in keeping a smooth service during one of the busiest weeks of the year.
Here are 3 tips for your front of house staff:
When your blood sugar crashes, it isn’t a pretty sight; you become slower, crankier, and not in a position for success. Keep staff happy and running on all cylinders by keeping a stash of high energy snacks available (think granola bars, fruits, and other healthy sugars that won’t guarantee a harder crash later). Also try to keep pre-shift meals lighter—large meals are a quick ticket to zapping energy and putting staff to sleep.
2. Games and Incentives
How do you make work more fun than it is? Turn it into a game!
Games and incentives give staff something fun to focus on (instead of thinking about how tired they are). You might try restaurant bingo (a square could be the first guest to order a certain wine) and offer a prize to the winner. Or, consider an additional cash incentive for the server with the most upsells during the evening. Finally, it never hurts to open some of those after-shift brews a little earlier on these busier nights.
3. Energize Your Staff Pre-Shift
Try setting up a pre-shift yoga class or an in-house masseuse to come and give your staff the much needed TLC they’ll need before another busy service. Not only will these activities help them physically, but it will put them in a better state of mind to tackle the night ahead. You can try a dance party or even arousing game of kickball. Athletes warm up before a race, and so should your staff. Also, be sure to feed them….but not too much (see #1).