Have you ever opened a restaurant concept, only to realize the real estate selection was more trouble than you’d realized? Perhaps it’s the location itself that lacks enough traffic to keep revenue coming in, or maybe it’s a troublesome neighbor. Moving would obviously cost money, plus you’re in a lease, so what do you do?
Or imagine this: You open a restaurant and then the landscape shifts more to meet consumer demand. You realize, after a good amount of time, that this isn’t a trend, it’s not fleeting. Your casual dining concept becomes less relevant than, say, a fast casual down the street — and your numbers prove it to be true. One of the most difficult things can be admitting your initial concept was a so-called failure.
Things like this happen a lot in the restaurant space, and it’s important to assess what makes more sense for you: investing further in the thing that’s not working (technology, or example) or doing a complete redo. For a big brands like Wendy’s or Olive Garden, who are both renovating restaurant locations to fit a new image to coincide with the existing marketplace, investing isn’t necessarily an issue. On the other side of the spectrum, NYC restaurateurs like Keith McNally or Nick Morgenstern, along with other smaller unit restaurant owners, have both flipped the switch successfully. Read More