Top 10 Management gripes about employees

What are your top gripes about employees? What do you do to address them?A couple of mine:"That's not my job." - I can't stand it when an employee says this! Your job is to provide the best service possible to our customer. That's a pretty broad statement and means you should be able to do anything from hosting to bussing."Sorry, I can't do that for you." - I don't mind so much when staff says this to me (although it usually doesn't make me happy) but when it's said to a customer it drvies me nuts. Within reason, of course, staff should never make the customer feel like there's something we can't do for them.What are your gripes?

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  • Manage by "the law of gravity."

    You won't have an attitude problem if you have rules in place and follow through on the rules 100% of the time. Employees are like children in that if you let them get buy with things "sometimes" (for whatever reason) they've got you.

    Personnally, when I get treated rudely by an employee, I remind them that "unemployment" cures an unhappy employee attitude.
    • Personnally, when I get treated rudely by an employee, I remind them that "unemployment" cures an unhappy employee attitude

      i'm not sure i follow richard...are you talking from the standpoint of an ER or a guest?
  • My top gripes usually have to do with the lack of leadership and understanding by managers. If you decide that your venue is a fun one that offers a convivial atmosphere to the staff and that it is up to the on-site leadership to encourage that by being present, you can figure almost anything out. I guess if i have to pick something that really bothers me it would be the deflection of any staff member to not be urgent in handling any portion of a guest experience. Any time a staff member is convicted in their charge to deliver a great experience, it usually happens. Blame and pointing fingers have little to do with the acceptance of the responsibility to deliver on that. Have fun, be crazy, know your business and the rest comes easy.
  • I extremely agree with u hospitality industry is people industry iy is all about service thats it
  • Taylor,

    In my experience in the front of the house, as a manager and as an owner of a small restaurant, (25 years), check lists must be used. If you aren't printing off a checklist and covering it with thick laminate and then having a supervisor or manager check sidework on this type of 'dry erase' checklist you are digging your own grave.

    So the checklist is covered back and front with thick, durable, clear laminate that can be written on and erased with water based markers and then a napkin to erase, (moist).

    Server will ALWAYS lie about their sidework once their pockets are full of TIPS, (25 years of experience). The server believes they have made their money and completed their job. Only the GOLDEN servers and employees will not lie to you and they are very, very, very rare, so you can't count on truth in sidework from anybody.

    Think about when your knees, when your back hurts, when your child is sick and you want to get home to that child, think about what you might say when a loved one is in the hospital ...
    Servers are actors on a stage, and their entire world is based on exaggeration and "telling a story", when a manager asks about sidework ... it's just another act in the play and you become just another rube to "act out upon".

    Anger about this will only impede your ability to implement a positive solution. There is always more than one way to make money ... on both sides of the business transaction ... and sidwork is business, it's not "friends" or "not friends". It's business, plain and simple.

    Checklists also reign in arguments amongst staffers as to "whose job it is".

    Having the checklist also EMPOWERS employees to do their job, it gives them clear goals and keeps you out of their face. Nobody likes to have somebody in their face. Even prisoners in Angola State Prison do not like to have people in their face constantly repeating something, (perhaps rudely and with threats).

    Distance yourself and management from these issues with a checklist.

    If you have 10 employees and have to review sidework orally, verbally, in order to train them, that's perhaps 20 sidework responsibilities to 10 employees perhaps 4-5 times verbally until you get the "Golden Employee" ... so, 20 jobs, times 10 servers, times 4-5 times verbally ...

    OR ... one checklist, once.

    Print your checklist off with boxes at the front of the sidework duty so you can check them and then re-use them. Direct everybody to the sidework checklist and their will be no arguments ... (if you have done your job correctly).

    This is how the HUGE fantastically successful chains operate and they have spent many millions of dollars paying people like me to explain and develop systems that nip these problems in the bud.
    • Pat...

      Check lists are a good idea for both FOH and BOH. It provides consistency and sets standards/

      "Server will ALWAYS lie"
      Categorizing a given job class exclusively as "liars" is a bit offensive. People are like electricity… They will take the path of least resistance. I’m sure there are “liars” who are cooks, bus staff, hosts, bartenders, cocktailers, Sous Chefs, Chefs, Kitchen Managers, Managers, GM’s, Regional Managers, Execs, and Owners. The news media reports them daily.

      Contrary to some popular perceptions and news reports, being a restaurant owner does not make a person a thief.

      I believe all of them have “check lists” to make sure they complete their job assignments and for someone else to check.

      • Paul,

        I will rephrase:

        In order to achieve good teamwork throughout the opening, running and closing sidework one must ASSUME that everybody lies. The checklist simply keeps you from "feeling it".

        Please remember, my experience of the last 7 years is in New Orleans, Louisiana: Katrina ravaged, PTSD to the max.

        But one who trusts, will always get suckered eventually. Business is not about trust, it's about business. Checklists are contracts and when they are broken the rules of business apply.

        Trust is a measure of friendship. If you want to run a restaurant on trust, count me out unless I'm the GM.
        • Thanks Pat!
          • i wouldn't hire you to do my dishes at home
      • this is what i don't like about narrows your perception of the big picture...if it is not on the list, it is "out of sight out of mind"...i would rather that we, myself along with my employees THINK outside the box....know WHY rather than be a sheep and just DO....and if an employee CANNOT do this, he doesn't belong in my bistro...either in the front or back.

        as to liars...they exist everywhere...who cares....if a server slacks in side work, if a cook slacks in prep, i get rid of him...end of story.

        taylor...your system is a bit too anal for is meant for larger places that employ either young immature people or illegal immigrants that have no understanding or concept of your business...neither will ever step foot in here.
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