How to motivate employees in restaurant

The owners of restaurants are certain that it’s almost impossible to avoid a constant staff turnover while such turnover rate is really frightening. In large cities, as much as two-thirds of the restaurant staff can change over the course of a year! First of all, this indicates a lack of motivation of employees who, instead of working for a team and generating income for themselves and the business, are forced to look for new jobs due to the poor working conditions.

Often, the management themselves create a staff turnover, forcing the employees to work more and longer, imposing exorbitant fines and collective financial liability, which in the process leads to replacement by new staff. Such a policy of penalties and work under pressure for many employees turns their activity into hard labor, and consequently pleasant service and good customer treatment will no longer be a question. People want to quickly finish their shifts and go home. They aren’t interested in the success of the location. As a result, it affects the reputation of the location, the outflow of visitors and the decline in profits.

Many restaurateurs come to the question, “How and what can motivate the staff?” If your waiters consider themselves part of the team, they will be motivated to serve customers well and ensure their return to the location. They’ll want those customers to recommend the restaurant to their friends. Thus, you can say that the main goal is achieved and you’re on track for the creation of an effective team.

In this article, we will tell you about the types of motivation, teamwork, and methods to increase your staff efficiency.

Tangible motivation

Business success is a combination of enthusiasm, motivation, and encouragement among the employees of your location. When employees are motivated to work as a team, they feel independent and become more productive.

Profit-sharing is the first tool to use. It’s a highly effective motivator that allows staff to consciously participate in the business. Every employee understands that the more the location earns, the higher their salary will be at the end of the month/year. By encouraging the success of your team in this way, you motivate each of its members and add a sense of responsibility for the achievement of common goals.

Create your reward system. It could be a bonus to the fastest waiter of the month, or it might be a reward to the chef who comes up with a new dish that fits into the general concept of the location or reduces the costs of existing ones.

This can easily be done by analyzing the statistics for the selected period in the restaurant POS software for iPad and Android tablets. In just a couple of clicks in the Statistics of your Admin panel, you’ll find out who among your employees is the most hardworking and efficient. However, you should remember to consider the time of shifts and the density of the visitors’ flow, which can also be examined using the automation system by comparing the total number of receipts and the average receipt for the day.

You can try Poster 15-days free trial, and start monitoring the performance of your employees right now.

If your staff is already working very efficiently, regular bonuses for overtime work and overfulfillment of the monthly plan will only enhance the duration of the positive effect.

Working conditions for the restaurant staff

Also, along with promoting and rewarding, an important motivating factor is the meals for the staff at the expense of the location. Any experienced restaurateur knows that a good waiter is a satisfied waiter. You can use dishes from the restaurant’s menu or design a separate menu with quick cooking and simplified serving to cater for employees. This will allow having fewer delays in a working process of the whole location, particularly in the kitchen.

Create a comfortable environment for the staff by furnishing a separate room for relaxation, a separate changing room, and a shower room.

Personnel training

Don’t forget to ask your employees about what knowledge they lack and whether they’d like to broaden their profiles. To do this, you can introduce a system of mentoring, develop an internship program for new employees, and attract specialists from well-known companies. You can also send employees to conferences and seminars, but don’t forget about the courses for cooks, bartenders, managers and waiters, where they can obtain new knowledge and learn from renowned experts.

The system of bonuses and penalties for restaurant employees

Give your employees a sense of security from unjust decisions. If your waiters think only about how not to get a reprimand or a fine, then they won’t be able to bring profit to the location. Differentiate the evaluation criteria and the rules for work by the staff. Employees must know exactly which actions are punishable and which kinds of actions are encouraged. They should learn about it not from other, more experienced employees but in an accessible, understandable manner. This should be in the form of a transparent bonus system and clearly prescribed rules of fines for poorly executed work, including the responsibility for damage to utensils, uniforms and other elements of the work location.

Intangible motivation

Try not to reduce all bonuses to money. Otherwise, you’ll have a group of employees who, without this incentive, won’t want to even clean the dirty dishes because they aren’t paid for the task.

If you want to strengthen the team’s relations without bonuses and financial rewards, start with the simple respect for all employees. Start by treating the dishwasher and the hall administrator with similar respect. If this is accompanied by comfortable working conditions, a flexible work schedule, food and rest, as mentioned above, it will enhance the motivational effect.

Organize parties for your employees, such as for birthdays and official holidays. This will help them develop team spirit outside the work environment. Of course, it will be very difficult to gather the whole team, as this can paralyze the work of the location. Therefore, as an option you can divide the activities into several stages to which the various employees are invited, and change them from holiday to holiday so that everyone can talk and get acquainted in a non-work atmosphere and get to know each other better. You can add sports events, barbecues, joint excursions, bowling, basketball or hockey games, etc.

Staff-motivation tips for the manager

Encourage the independence of each employee and be indulgent toward them. This will enable your staff to offer or do something new without fear of failure. This is particularly important for your team in the kitchen. Give them a chance to change some dishes or offer new ones. Let them help you create a new menu. Ask them for an opinion on the concept of the cuisine and the choice of products.

Respond reasonably, but don’t allow your emotions to take over. An experienced leader should morally support his/her subordinates: Order a taxi after a complicated shift, or give a day off when family circumstances might require it. However, as a manager you shouldn’t allow the staff to walk right over you. Carefully confirm the honesty of your employees and their sincere devotion to the location.

Team spirit is the key to an effective team

The efficiency and profitability of your business are elevated when you encourage team spirit.

Sometimes it’s very difficult to do so because any employee wants to prove to the employer that he/she works well and does it better than others. Even if you have a very good employee with an excellent reputation and track record, all his/her skills will be meaningless if he/she can’t function as part of the team.

Kate Palanchuk
Content Marketer at Poster POS. Kate digs deep into the layers of new technologies and trends in the restaurant business to provide the best content for the blog readers.

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