Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
In the restaurant business one of the most important things is having a great staff. Its important to have a staff that shows up, works hard and has good morale. It is also very important; your staff be able to work together. Having a staff that works together effectively will boost morale, efficiency and reduce turnover.
Here are six ways you can foster team work with your restaurant staff:
1. It Starts at the Top
Whether you’re talking about the restaurant industry or a Fortune 500 corporation, everything starts at the top. You can’t just tell people how to act and behave totally oblivious to your own directives. You need walk the walk if you expect people to listen to your talk. It is not just important, but absolutely necessary for Restaurant Managers to set the example for team work and working together.
All positive behavior is going to start at the top and trickle down from there. If it starts at the bottom, it will just trickle out. Help develop your team, by being the great team player you want them to be.
The key to all great teams is great communication. Foster a great restaurant team, by creating a culture of communication. Start by listening. Allow everyone to contribute ideas and be respectful of them, even the dumb ones. Employees shut down and slip into their shells, when they feel like no one cares about them or what they think. Conversely staff members will feel more invested in their job, if they are listened to and feel like they are valued.
A staff that communicates, is a staff that works well together. Better communication will not only lead to better team work, but naturally increase productivity and customer service. Team members can get on the same page when they are communicating effectively.
Speaking of feeling valued. Employees respond extremely well to recognition. Show gratitude for your staff, and reward them verbally for their team work as well as for individual effort. People feel better and perform better when they feel appreciated, and get this, gratitude is free. Rewards like time off and bonuses are great and appreciated, but not all rewards need to come out of the company’s pocket.
While your showing gratitude, take time to celebrate your team. Celebrate birthdays, accomplishments, heck, celebrate everything you can. Just be sure to be sincere with your gratitude, if it comes across sarcastic, it can have a negative effect.
Set up rules and stand by them. Rules may not seem like fun, but they are all around us and they actually give provide structure and consistency which leads to peace of mind. People like consistency and they like being treated equally. Treating your team fairly and equally is critical. Employees expect to have rules and take it to heart when they feel the rules don’t mean anything or one teammate gets away with too much.
5. Play to Their Strengths
This is going to sound crazy, but there are actually Managers out there that force their employees to do what they are weakest at. They might be thinking the staff will get stronger if they improve upon their weaknesses. This is ludicrous. A basketball team doesn’t have their smallest guy guarding the net or their worst shooter taking outside shots.
Identify your teams’ strengths and put them in position to succeed and feel good about it. Hopefully team members will learn from each other and get better at their weaknesses, but that comes organically over time.
6. Spend Time Together
One of the greatest ways to foster team work is to spend time together. Spend quality time together, whether it is a family diner or going out for drinks at the end of the night. If you find you don’t want to spend time with them or them with you, then think about what that tells you. The best teams enjoy being around each other and spending time in which they learn more about each other personally and can laugh and cry over their battle stories.