We have been talking a lot about how to find customers and keep them engaged and happy. After all, without customers our business would be nothing. However, you might be forgetting about someone who is just as important to your business as your customers – your employees.
There is no way you can keep your customers happy if their first contact with your business is with frustrated and unmotivated employees. Especially when working at a restaurant – you’re not only selling good food, you’re actually selling the whole experience of eating there.
Working at a restaurant can be very stressful due to the constant hustle and bustle. Keeping your employees motivated in this type of environment will keep them focused on delivering the quality service your customers deserve.
Ideas to Keep Your Employees Motivated
Work As Team
Make your employees aware of how important each and everyone’s role is for the operation of your business. Let them know how they are all part of a bigger purpose than just cleaning the table, or handling money.
Avoid the “this is not my responsibility” culture, as it generates a toxic work environment. Although everyone has their designated tasks, it’s important for all employees to have an idea of other’s people tasks so they can step in when help is needed. As a manager, you should also step in from time to time to take over some duties when demand is high. This will show your employees that you’re also a part of the team and they can count on you when help is needed.
Creating a healthy competitive environment can also help get your employees motivated. From having the usual “employee of the month”, to making daily competitions to see which employee sells the most more desserts, to getting flextime. There are a lot of different ways to get your employees engaged and motivated. Having them compete and strive just for a thank you can be deceiving, make it a bit more interesting by adding bonuses, gift cards or flextime.
Nobody starts a job knowing everything. If you want your business to grow, you have to help your employees grow with it. In addition to training your employees for the tasks they will be performing, also show them other areas of your business so they can understand the big picture.
Ask them how they are looking to grow within your business and which skills they want to develop. Based on that, you can create a training schedule that fits both your business and your employees needs. It will motivate your employees knowing that you care about their development.
It’s very important not to forget that you’re working with humans, and that your employees also have a life outside of the workplace. Ask them from time to time about their personal life (without crossing the line). Be aware of their life events, if someone is having a birthday, getting married or graduating soon. Organize a little celebration with the rest of the employees. This will give your team a little time to bond together outside of work and connect with you and each other.
Open Communication With Them
Communication, like in any kind of relationship, is the key to having a healthy working environment. Listen to them and encourage them to share their ideas. They know your customers better since they’re the ones in direct contact with them, and they might notice things you haven’t.
Give them feedback when it’s the right moment, and always keep yourself open to receiving feedback from them. This way you will avoid having people talking behind each other’s backs, and your employees will constantly become better at what they do.
Always take into consideration how you would like to be treated if you were an employee. Your job as a manager is to keep your employees motivated and happy. If you succeed at this, your employees will make sure your business also succeeds.