5 Things Restaurant Owners Need to Know About Sex-Based Discrimination

5 Things Restaurant Owners Need to Know About Sex-Based Discrimination

Turns out, sexual harassment isn’t the only type of sex-based complaint employers are facing. LGBT-related workplace complaints are on the rise, but unlike with sexual harassment, the law isn’t nearly as clear. In fact, it varies extensively across state and federal courts, leaving many employers at a loss to understand their legal obligations. Let’s take a look at what restaurant owners need to know about sex-based discrimination in the workplace – what conduct is illegal and where.  

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Building the Non-Sexual Harassment Restaurant Culture

Building the Non-Sexual Harassment Restaurant Culture

For many seasons on the popular HBO series Game of Thrones, they kept saying that “Winter is coming” that was foreshadowing of a Great War to come. Well, Winter is here for the restaurant industry! The great restaurant storm of 2018 is upon us and many will need to form alliances (already happening), some will rebrand (already happening), and all will need to understand that people are what makes the difference (not there yet).

We, as an industry, perpetuate memes and jokes around the internet that display our world as overworked, devalued, and unappreciated. It’s not so funny that we tend to get what we ask for. We become the stereotypes we share.

How do we change this sexual harassment culture that infests so much of our industry? How can we reverse the course which we seem to be heading down to becoming the next Sodom and Gomorrah?

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This is What It Takes To Be a Leader In Your Restaurant

This is What It Takes To Be a Leader In Your Restaurant

You made it. You’re a leader in your restaurant. Well, that might be what your business card says or how you see yourself. The truth is often quite the opposite. We tend to think that being a leader is about the title or even tenure. Nothing is further from the reality that many people are not the leader they think they are.

There are a few elements that come along with the title of being a leader. Some are well known and a few are those intangibles that make a leader truly stand out. In the restaurant industry today there is plenty of mediocrity floating around. If you want to be a leader in your restaurant, then you must aim for outstanding.

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3 Traits To Look For in Your Next GM Hire

3 Traits To Look For in Your Next GM Hire

A common theme that's happening in this industry is there's a shortage on high quality candidates.

The majority of people who are asked why they chose the restaurant industry will say it started out as a side gig or there was nothing else out there for them. When I hear this from a lot of restaurant managers or employees in Los Angeles, it shocks me.

When you ask a restaurant professional what they dislike the most about the industry; often times, they'll say the high-stress environment to low-paying positions aren't worth it these days.

Currently, there's a real BOH staff shortage because most chefs would rather go the personal business route. By opening their own restaurant, chefs get to control the environment and their schedule (even their pay).

When it comes to general management positions, you need to set your restaurant up for success. They will basically be the ones responsible for the success of your restaurant (along with you), so it's important you find the right person for the job.  

There are three traits that are non-negotiable and every successful general manager (GM) will have these. Without these traits, you're setting yourself up for a headache and to work more because you won't trust your GM going forward.

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Correcting Company Culture to Address Sexual Harassment

Correcting Company Culture to Address Sexual Harassment
  • Human Resources Guru Carrie Luxem prevents sexual harassment within restaurants using training and company culture

  • Sexual Harassment allegations about Chefs John Besh and Todd English have the industry concerned

On this episode of The Barron Report, we talk to Human Resources Guru, Carrie Luxem about how your company can better manage your team in the wake of the recent sexual harassment claims. Numerous industries have been shaken by sexual harassment allegations and the restaurant industry is no different. With top chefs like Todd English and John Besh being exposed for inappropriate behavior, the business community is concerned. Foodable, to better serve our community, has worked to deliver the best information to you about how to manage these types of claims in your business and, better yet, how to stop them from happening in the first place.

Show Notes

  • 1:11 Carrie LuxemRestaurant HR Group & CarrieLuxem.com
  • 3:53 - Uncovering a Long-Standing Problem
  • 5:01 - Culture of the Hospitality Industry
  • 6:43 - What Is and Isn't Appropriate?
  • 9:55 - Are Revealing Uniforms Part of the Problem?
  • 12:16 - Confronting Customers for Harassment in Your Establishment
  • 14:01 -  Do Not Tolerate That Behavior, Even From Power Positions
  • 18:38 - How to Stop Sexual Harassment Before It Happens
  • 22:47 - Having a Plan in Place
  • 24:56 - Hiring the Right Team
  • 28:40 - Foodable Analyzing Online Sexual Harassment Claims
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This is The Number One Problem in Your Restaurant

This is The Number One Problem in Your Restaurant

Problems.

All restaurants have them. You probably have a few, too.

It’s okay.

Having problems is actually a good thing because they signal a gap from where you currently are to where you want your restaurant to be. The thing you do not want to do is ignore them. Problems can be a gift. Ignoring them is a sure way to let them grow into a monster that can consume your business. Always better to get the monster while it is small and does not require the National Guard (a.k.a. a consultant) to be called in.

So, what problems are you facing right now? What keeps you up at night?

Now, it doesn’t matter where your restaurant is located. The industry shares the same issues globally (I have seen this first hand as an intentional restaurant coach). The struggle to find talent, the need to dominate your marketing, and the rising costs of doing business all are common problems that many restaurants face today. What is a restaurant to do?

Understand the number one problem that is the cause for all of this…

People.

All business problems are really just people problems in disguise.

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Making the TotalView Work for You: Breaking Down The Best Practices Audit

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Watch this episode and more!

All six episodes are available to Foodable+ members. Membership is an all-in-one package of the game-changing trends, expert analysis, reports and insights driving the industry for the entire year!

On the last episode, we introduced the TotalView Best Practices Audit and why you should use it in your business. But what exactly is this audit? Essentially, the TotalView is a survey used to determine how well your business is running. Separated into seven core competencies, the TotalView touches on every facet of your operation from team members, to design, to management of finances.

Normally conducted by a consultant, the Rockers want to share this auditing process with operators like you to help you get started self-auditing.

When going down the list, you will find questions organized by segments of the business: Leadership and Management, Brand and Marketing, Guest Service, Menu and Culinary, Operations and Training, Human Resources and Internal Communication, and Financial Performance.  

So, what do you get with the TotalView Best Practices Audit? The Rockers set you up for success with a set methodology and objectives, an executive summary, the "Best Practices 7 Core Competency Findings and Recommendations," a SWOT chart, a set of conclusions, recommended next steps, and resources and exhibits to help you along the way.

Bill and Eric remind us that it’s important that you are honest when implementing this process. It only works if you use it the way a third-party auditor would. Once you have your findings, you can implement changes that will start to improve your operation.

"You or this process really becomes the change agent for the organization. If you've got some problems and you start implementing this process, I think you'll find those problems out and be able to change. You're really going to be able to shift where you are and try to make it better," Eric said.

And don’t hesitate to turn to a FCSI Consultant if you want a little help from an expert with fresh eyes! They can help customize your audit to your particular operation.

Which Foodservice Trends Will We See in 2017? What Foodable Industry Experts Predict

The new year is upon us and Foodable is beyond excited to see which trends will reign in 2017!

Luckily for you, a few of Foodable’s foodservice industry experts have come to aid you in this arduous task of identifying key trends and making solid predictions. Our experts, who work as restaurant consultants themselves, are in tune with the pulse of the industry and the changing consumers attitudes in foodservice.

Lets see what our experts have to say!

With 34 years of experience in different areas of the foodservice industry, Donald Burns, The Restaurant Coach™, has identified his big three trends for the year.

African Flavors

“You’re going to see a lot of things like Shawarma and Harissa, and you’re going to come in and see a lot of the chefs...take a lot of those spices and those kinds of flavor profiles and implementing them… You’re going to see that kind of stuff in tacos, barbecue, etc.”

Cooking Classes and Kits

“Restaurants could really take advantage of this and have some options here to have some real cooking classes...or maybe you could do a kit, maybe your own home meal kit, and you can basically send it to people or they can pick it at your restaurant with instructions. Maybe you already have your signature sauces blended for them, so it takes some of the guess work out of them…it’s a huge opportunity for people who want to take advantage of this hot trend.”

Food Halls

"Today, people, they want to mix it up… they want to try out new things. Nothing is better than going to a food hall with your friends and having lots and lots of different options available... There are [great] ones out there in the market. There’s one in Houston, Tex., called Conservatory… There’s another one: Avante in Denver… also the Revival Food Hall in Chicago. Another great concept!”

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Jaclyn Morgan is the owner in principal of JM Foodservice Consulting, LLC with 20 years of experience in equipment product management and category management for grocery retail. She’s also an MAS consultant belonging to the FCSI organization. Below are a couple of trends Morgan sees spilling over into 2017 from 2016, along with the emergence of a trend that is gaining major traction thanks to the fast-advancing-technology environment that we live in nowadays.

Hyper-Local Food

“Customers want to connect personally with their food. This is why hyper-local sourcing is so important. Another interesting side to that is people want global flavor. So it’s very interesting that we want to know where our food comes from and how to be part of our community, but customers want to travel the world at the same time.”

Food Waste Reduction (Sustainability)

“We heard of sustainability in many different ways over the years. We’ve seen it decades ago as back-to-nature, we’ve all heard about going green. So, again, we’re continuing to talk about sustainability and how are we — either as restaurant owners or as customers — ...helping the environment and the community around us. 

This boils down to food waste reduction… Within interior design, right now, sustainability still involves:reclaimed woods and a sense of 'green.' Again, it’s that connection we all want to have back with nature and within our community.”

Digital Collection of Consumer Data (Technology)

“We need to gather feedback from our customers, from social media, from the internet, as quickly and efficiently as possible and work that into an excellent recipe for customer service, to be able to communicate immediately and make an impact.”

As a 15-year veteran in the hospitality world, restaurant consultant and founder of Savory Hospitality, Salar Sheik, builds, grows, manages, expands, and brings clients' food and beverage visions to life. Sheik’s top picks are as follows:

Pasta

"In 2017, we are definitely seeing a big push in crafted pastas, definitely pastas that are housemade from scratch, as well as gluten-free…. We’ve also seen: kelp noodles, rice-based noodles, a lot of great quinoa noodles.… Be on the look out because this definitely fulfills the comfort food section as well as just flavors.”

Korean Food

“It definitely has a great spice profile, a lot of flavors. You’ve seen, I believe, mass chains picking up on the flavor profiles and ingredients from gochujang pepper paste to kimchee, bulgogi burgers. We are already seeing it a bit on the food trucks, but I think it will definitely be a big hit out in the restaurant industry.”

Naturally Fermented Food

“What are naturally fermented foods? More than just pickles. We’ve seen fermented bread, radishes, yogurts, kombucha juice. Naturally fermented foods have been in great popularity in terms of health, flavor profile. Chefs are definitely exploring its ability to enhance dishes. We saw a festival of 5,000 people at Boston Fermented Food Festival. People showed up really enthusiastic… A lot of food critics are saying this is the future of eating. I think in 2017 we will see a whole lot of that!”

Finally, Doug Radkey, an expert in restaurant and bar startup development and founder of Key Restaurant Group in Canada, shared his top three trends for 2017.

Tech-Driven Delivery

“I believe this is continuously going be a disruptor from within the industry and more so with independents in this upcoming year, as it’s more convenient for them to get online ordering, online payments, digital loyalty reward programs. These are all becoming more accessible for them and also affordable.

At the same time, we are also going to see more full-service restaurants get into the take-out and delivery spectrum, delivering food to homes, offices and even hotels…. Also voice-recognition is going to become a bigger thing... [with items such as Amazon‘s Echo] where customers can place an order from their home by simply using their voice."

Garden to Glass with Hyper-Local Products

“Chefs getting into it with their own gardens, more storytelling behind the product, where it’s coming from, and also instead of farm to table, we are going to start seeing more garden to glass for example, on the bar side of things…”

Struggles for Start-Ups in 2017 and Advice

“In terms of cost, [it] is no secret that utilities are continuously rising, food costs are going up, wages continue to go up, which is also creating labor shortages, in terms of having qualified cooks [who] can deliver on high quality, hyper local product, and of course, market saturation, as well. There are plenty of copy-cat type concepts that are out there, making it very difficult for independent aspiring restaurateurs to get into the game. The ideal situation to combat this issue within the industry is to develop a very detailed feasibility study followed by a very thorough concept plan that is profitable, sustainable while executing on a very solid business plan.”

Providing Your Staff a Quality Team Member Experience

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Watch this episode and more!

All six episodes are available to Foodable+ members. Membership is an all-in-one package of the game-changing trends, expert analysis, reports and insights driving the industry for the entire year!

This season on "Rock My Restaurant," Foodable Network is bringing you a premium content package of nine in-depth episodes that can be paired with our Rock My Restaurant PRO Workbooks, expert guides, and reports– all available for purchase.

Each episode, co-hosted by veteran foodservice industry consultants Bill Bender and Eric Norman, helps take your operation to the top. That's right — you get access to two highly-acclaimed foodservice consultants, all from the viewing pleasure of your own home, office, or classroom.

“Rock My Restaurant” is the show that helps industry professionals build their restaurant from the ground up.

Episode 4: Team Member Experience

A restaurant is only as successful as the team responsible for running it. As Rock My Restaurant Pro co-host Bill Bender explains, providing a positive experience is crucial to team success.

Team member experience consists of more than just an employee’s relationship with their peers. It includes their experience with the culture of the restaurant, as well as the design of the facility.

“Whether it’s prep cook, line cook, somebody making salads or dessert — Is their workstation set up correctly? Is it ergonomically correct? Do they have all the tools they need at that workstation to get the job done without being completely miserable running back and forth to the walk-in or to the pot sink?” are the questions fellow co-host Eric Norman asks.

Millennials in the Workforce

It is also important to consider what is important to your team. In this age, we see a lot more millennials coming on as team members in restaurants. With high digital literacy and an increased concern for the environment, managers might find they need to provide modern technologies and environmental conservation strategies. You can build loyalty in team members who take pride in representing your company.  

Want to purchase the Rock My Restaurant PRO Workbooks and follow along with each episode for a richer experience? You'll get the following assets:

  • The Proactive Management Guide
  • Top 8 Digital Musts for Your Restaurant
  • Ergonomic Impacts on Design
  • Millennial Report
  • Operating Systems Audit
  • and more!