Banning Children-When It Will Work and When it Might Backfire
If you're considering not allowing children in your restaurant, it is a good idea to analyze the type of restaurant you run first. Although some of these ideas may seem obvious, one slip up could cause you the success of your business. After all, you do not want to be the restaurant who doesn't want kids, realizes revenue is down, and suddenly wants them again-not very welcoming.
When it will work:
- Current Customers - If your restaurant is primarily an older crowd (bar scene, sports bar, etc.), banning children would likely not hurt your sales. In fact, if you made this announcement, your restaurant would likely get some free press. If you did not have a big draw to families anyway, this will probably be the extent of your profits.
- Location - If you're located in a quiet area, people will tend to hope for a quiet restaurant atmosphere. For example, if you are located near a golf course or in the mountains, people will respond well to the idea of no children. The appeal of no children would likely increase the flow of customers into your restaurant.
- Cuisine - Fancy restaurants are meant to be classy. If you have a fancy restaurant, banning children probably won't hurt your sales; however you must be careful. You do not want families to feel as though they are forced to eat fast food just because they have children. Market your restaurant as a place to take a break from the children, and be sure to remind parents that it is important to take time to relax.
When it will backfire:
- Current Customers - This verges on obvious, but it is important you do not "try out" banning children if your restaurant brings in a lot of families. I say this to remind the owner who may be tired of hearing loud children and dealing with little kids running around the restaurant. Remember: they are why you have a job. The best thing you can do is embrace it by creating kid friendly meals and coloring activities to keep them occupied. For the kids that are too young to color: cross your fingers!
- Location - If you are located next to a kids fun world, families will want an option to visit your restaurant. Chances are if you are located in a kid-friendly area of town, you're located in a kid-friendly town.
- Cuisine - If you have an affordable restaurant open all day long, it would likely been seen as rude to shut your doors to children. After all, children need to be eating more than fast food, and that would be difficult if they were unable to go out to eat (especially if their parents do not cook).
I think that these considerations should go in order. For example, if you had a fancy restaurant in a kid friendly area, your restaurant falls into both of these categories. I would focus on where you are located before focusing on the type of restaurant you run. If you're interested, the restaurant in Pennsylvania was a small restaurant located on a quiet golf course, and sales did increase after the decision to ban children. Do you think this idea will work if a restaurant falls into the descriptions described above?
Get it Right from the Start - How to Best Train New Servers
By Amanda DiSilvestro
No matter how outgoing, friendly, or experienced your new employee may be, you know that being a server is not a job for just anyone. Between learning what to say to customers, your restaurants specific policies, the menu and the computer system, being a server at a new restaurant is very challenging. After you think you have found the right person for the job comes the real test-training.
The worst thing a manager can do for both his/her employees and customers is send a new server out to fend for themselves. Customer service is the key to success, so it is important to take your time and get it right from the start. These six steps are a great way to ensure the success of your business through the proper training of new servers: