In our line of work, we’ve seen it more than a few times – a business gets old, it gets stale, and the passion that created it has waned. Someone who started out as a young professional operates for years and years, gets older and tired of the job, but stays in it anyway.
Whether it’s a family business or a team of partners, knowing when it’s time to step down is important. But how do you know that?
We’ve seen some of the major and most common signs of restaurant malfunction as we work with clients to buy and sell restaurant businesses. Here are a few that may be signs that something needs to change.
Unmanageable Food Costs
This may be one of the more obvious signs of trouble in some cases. When someone in charge of a restaurant’s business model is losing their grip in terms of planning, it often manifests in the form of sky-high food costs. That’s because wasted food costs money, and ineffective management leads to more waste. Not getting more diners in the door on any given table service means food takes longer to turn over, and it gets old or needs to be thrown away. Or worse, it’s not thrown away, but still used after it has turned. Then you lose more customers, and the vicious cycle continues…
As a restaurant owner or manager becomes less able to micromanage the kitchen in key ways, you see it in the quality of what ends up on the plate. You may see sauces with dried out skins, dangerously perishable food handled at improper temperatures, and more. All of this may be a sign that whoever is running the business needs additional input and assistance from a fresh set of eyes.
The Blame Game
Some people just won’t admit when they’re beat. This type of problem in the restaurant game often leads to finger-pointing and recriminations between the owner, general manager, head chef and some of the rank-and-file servers and kitchen staff who make things happen every day.
In our experience, when the blame game starts, the underlying problem usually has to do with a need for change at the highest levels – changing the management, bringing in skilled consultants, or ultimately selling the business.
We can help with that last one. With excellent business evaluation, feasibility study services and more, Emerald Coast is a restaurant and food service consulting and services firm with a reputation in the area. Call us and get help for the future of your business.