5 Tips For Running A Busy Shift

5 tips for running a busy shift

Certain holidays and special events drive extra business for the restaurant industry. Summer is here and people will be keen to get out and about after a long, dark winter.

Good weather and the right promotions should bring customers flocking to your establishment.

How successful you and your staff are at handling customers during these busy shifts has everything to do with preparation.

With a Bank holiday just around the corner, We have compiled a 5 step checklist on how you should be preparing your bar for one of “those days.”

1. Staffing.
Making sure to have enough hands on deck could be the difference between a busy day going off without a hitch or being filled with glitches. Gauge what you anticipate in terms of additional strain on your dining room, kitchen and security and make increases accordingly. This is a situation where you want to err on the side of too many employees rather than too few. Make sure you have enough staff serving drinks and more importantly, taking money, over the bar.

2. Operational adjustments.
It’s sometimes wise to consider making temporary changes in policy to compensate for additional customer traffic. One option is removing more complicated menu items in order to help keep your kitchen on top of an increase in traffic. Some restaurants temporarily suspend taking reservations when they know they’ll be swamped. If you take reservations on a night when you know open tables will be of particular value, it might not be a bad idea to require credit card information up front and charge a cancellation fee.

3. Be ready to move.
Though we assume you check stock every day before you open the doors, it won’t hurt to up the ante in that area. Making sure to re-stock critical menu and drink items will help prevent a delay that could cost you time and money. Having to run out for additional menu staples or popular drinks is a delay you want to do your best to avoid.

4. Prep the team.
It might not be a bad idea to conduct a type of rehearsal before a special event. Actually walking regular staff through potential situations might be extreme, but you’ll benefit from scheduling a lengthy meeting in advance of the big day. Talk the staff through changes and make certain everybody is on the same page before the “curtain goes up.”

5. Plan for Mishaps.
Busy nights may lead to a few drink spills or the accidental broken dish. Be sure to have cleaning supplies readily available. A mop and bucket with fresh water and easily accessible towels can go a long way to ensure that messes can get cleaned up right away.

Although some variables such as weather will always be outside of your control, there is no reason a lack of preparation should be the cause of lost business on one of the busier days of your year.