Featured Blog Posts – August 2009 Archive (50)

"Increase your profit potential"

Hey there folks! My name is Ray and I'm new comer to this sight. I find it very intertesting that in these times we in this industry must look for new ways to improve and maximize our profit potential. I pose a question for all Restaurant and bar owners and managers, What do you feel you could do to maximize your profit potential and increase your walk in business?

Added by Ray Diaz on August 31, 2009 at 3:27pm — 1 Comment

Popeye's v. Burger King Sales Results: Is Less More?

Last week, we got the Q4 and full year earnings of Burger King (BKC) and on August 20th, the Q2 earnings of Popeye’s (AFCE). Burger King reported disappointing sales comparables—US/Canada down 4.5%, while AFCE was one of the very rare chain restaurant universe gainers—up 4.3%.

We were intrigued as to why such a large sales performance difference.

Neither chain reported comparables components-traffic and average check, and check sub components, price and mix. AFCE said… Continue

Added by John A. Gordon on August 31, 2009 at 9:53am — No Comments

Doing the "right" thing (and getting fired for it)

Operating a business is challenging. I've managed software companies and restaurants and there was never a shortage of difficult decisions to make. I want to share a story about a choice I made, how it cost me my job, and how I was rewarded for it.

I was managing a restaurant near Rockefeller Center in New York City many years ago. It was the first week of December and business was crazy (as it always is that time of year). The owner came in to visit and dropped a bombshell on me. He… Continue

Added by Jeff Schacher on August 31, 2009 at 8:14am — 4 Comments

The Customer is Always, Well, The Customer

The customer is always Right.

Well, maybe not always, but how about at least treating them as such.

I would first like to apologize to the Fohboh Community for disappearing for the last three or four weeks. My mother had been diagnosed with liver and pancreatic cancer a few months ago and rather quickly regressed from a fairly healthy senior, to a hostice patient, to her eventual death the week before last.

She was not only my mother but my best… Continue

Added by Bill Baumgartner on August 30, 2009 at 7:57pm — 8 Comments

Just 'waiting' to be asked: Part One

I often hear waiters say restaurant work is far removed from how they view themselves professionally. Most of them are trying to make a living, and have plans of some day landing a "real job."

Some were once employed in other professions, and now feel that they have lost a certain measure of their worth. Almost all are disenchanted, and often complain and grumble their way through the night. They are literally 'waiting' until something better comes along.

Now, restaurant… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on August 30, 2009 at 3:28pm — 5 Comments

Back to School Time Already? Or does it just appear that way?

Well, probably not.

Usually, at this time of year, parents are rejoicing and the kids are wondering how the summer passed by so quickly. You've probably loaded up on backpacks, notebooks and a whole new wardrobe for the kids, glad to send them off to learn something more than X Box skills.

While most of the country goes back to school right after Labor Day, down here in Florida the kids went back this week with most returning to classes this past Tuesday. The private… Continue

Added by Steve Paterson on August 29, 2009 at 7:16pm — 16 Comments

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Added by FohBoh on August 29, 2009 at 8:24am — 1 Comment

Milk Supply is Changing

The chart of the week is the monthly milk production change compared to the prior year. As one can tell from the chart, it’s been a long time since we have experienced a decline in milk output. How long? How about sixty months or five years! It’s been a great run for milk production but the trend is almost certainly coming to an end. Milk production during June and July were only up fractionally from the previous year and that is due in a large part to relatively cool weather relieving stress… Continue

Added by David Maloni on August 28, 2009 at 8:05am — 6 Comments

DIY Training Videos for the FOH

Restaurants have the ability to create their own custom web video to train and motivate employees. There is no reason to invest in expensive, polished, and highly staged video production companies to produce this much needed content.

There are video cameras on the market that cost less than $300, shoot in high definition, and plug directly into a computer's USB port. Get creative, be resourceful, and tap into your staff's innate connection to media making… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on August 27, 2009 at 11:58pm — 7 Comments

It doesn’t have to be work!

We all have to have a career…how we define our career is what sets us apart and makes us either happy or, well, not so happy.

A career is needed to provide an income

A career is needed and frankly it is healthy, provides direction and organization

A career is one of the places where we meet others and expand our network

A career doesn’t have to be bad and it doesn’t have to be defined by someone else, it can be defined by you.

You need an Ultimate… Continue

Added by Andy Swingley on August 26, 2009 at 7:17pm — 4 Comments

Stop waiting. Start serving.

I stopped calling myself a waiter about a year ago. It's changed the way I see myself, in all areas of my life. I now refer to myself as a server, and it is opening my eyes.

Titles are powerful.

I work with waiters, though. They stand around waiting until their first tables arrive, and then count the hours until their shift ends. They wait for their guests to order; they don't have any personal insights into the menu. They wait to be told about the… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on August 26, 2009 at 12:08pm — 10 Comments

The gospel according to Tony

For my birthday, I got a copy of Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, and I've been laughing my way hysterically through each chapter.

If you aren't familiar with Anthony Bourdain, in addition to being a well-known author, he's also host of Travel Channel's culinary and… Continue

Added by Dani on August 26, 2009 at 5:35am — No Comments

Longhorn Steakhouse: Lesson In Being Remarkable

Why don’t most restaurants understand that it’s the little things you do that make a huge difference? At the Longhorn Steakhouse in Asheville, our steak wasn’t perfect. Too much fat for the cut.

Immediately our server noticed it and said, “this has too much fat, let me take it back and get you a new one.” Then the manager came by to offer his apologies. Much to our amazement, he had also comp’d the steak. He certainly didn’t have to do that.

Lesson: It’s the amazing things… Continue

Added by Joel Cohen, RestaurantMarketing.com on August 26, 2009 at 4:55am — 9 Comments

The symphony of a great restaurant

Da dada dum – da dada dum – we all know how the opening notes of Beethoven’s Fifth symphony transport the listener to new levels, expressing the very being of the composer and all that has made him who he is.

Such is the case as well with an amazing meal. From the moment of arrival and greeting to the first sip of a beverage and through the myriad flavors and nuances of each course, the diner becomes one with the chef. The connection is sensual and even erotic, as well as… Continue

Added by susan holaday on August 25, 2009 at 6:57pm — 6 Comments

Never Flash the Bouncer. Standing Out in this Job Market and Secrets from my Clubbing Days.

A few weeks ago, Laurie Ruettimann wrote a blog onPunk Rock HR asking the community to provide tips for job seekers on how to get the job. My advice was to approach getting the gig in the same way you would attempt to get into an exclusive club.

Here's an example from my "clubbin days".

I remember the first time I tried to get into an… Continue

Added by Amanda Hite on August 25, 2009 at 4:02am — 13 Comments

Social Media: Generation Why

It is clear that the FohBoh community is enthusiastic about Social Media for the workplace. However, the voices on FohBoh are mainly those of managers, restaurant operators and C-level executives. At the decision maker level, acceptance of social media has reached a tipping point, or "Social Shock," as Michael Atkinson has stated. Awesome!

But for this to really take off, for this to really have any… Continue

Added by Michael Biesemeyer on August 24, 2009 at 10:41am — 5 Comments

What General Motors and Restaurants Have In Common

The similarities between General Motors and the Restaurant Industry are very striking. Please let me explain:

6 Reasons (in my opinion) General Motors failed?

1.Head In The Sand-stuck to their ways and felt that they “knew best”

2.Stubborn-Refused to adapt despite all the warning signs

3.Failure to Launch-To much bureaucracy to make decisions in a timely manner

4.Action vs. Momentum-Busy doing “things” that got confused with momentum which… Continue

Added by Jonathan Morse on August 24, 2009 at 8:03am — 1 Comment

Websites, Blogs, Facebook, Mix It Up Keep It Fun

Your Facebook fan page doesn't seem to be adding any new fans. You blog is not receiving many hits, your website seems old even though you just built it. These are a few of the problems with social networking being just an ad for your restaurant. Yes that is the main reason you do it, to advertise about your goods and services. How do you keep those people that already know who you are and what you do coming back to see more?

Keep It Fresh And Fun!

Don't allow your fan to know what is… Continue

Added by Peter Boisvert on August 24, 2009 at 4:31am — No Comments

Dream Teams

So, there is a lot going on for everyone everywhere. Big announcements are made everyday in companies around the world. I also know that our world gets rocked and rattled sometimes as a result of changes that occur. Take a moment and think about this. It all starts with your mental frame of mind and how you choose to handle the situations that come up. "Dream Teams" don't just happen, they have to be developed. Andy Swingley is a master at developing teams. I am a product of his development… Continue

Added by Ed Thomas on August 21, 2009 at 9:06pm — 4 Comments

On The Pillars Of This Earth Lies A World Without End

The ‘literati’ amongst you will instantly recognize that I shamelessly ripped off the title of this blog post from two truly epic novels by renowned author Ken Follett and if you’ve read them both, by the time you are finished reading this, you will completely understand why I chose the title I did.

What is ironic to me is that gathering the information and material for this posting was actually easier than figuring out what to title it.

If you are not willing to set aside the… Continue

Added by Steve Paterson on August 20, 2009 at 10:44pm — 8 Comments

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National News

Wahlburgers Announces Expansion Plans Including Franchise Agreement in Philadelphia

Wahlburgers has signed a franchise agreement with Hingham Associates, LLC that will bring five Wahlburgers to the metropolitan Philadelphia area over the next several years. The franchise group is actively looking at sites and is targeting a late 2014-early 2015 opening for its first restaurant.

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Expert in Real Estate Analytics Joins Luna Grill

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Rita's Italian Ice Awards Area Development Agreement for Kansas

Rita's Italian Ice has awarded franchise and area development agreements for Kansas and the Kansas City area, which extends to the Missouri side of the city, to franchisees and local residents Jay Miller, Jeff Miller and Pat Reilly.


If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.


TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

TED: Jeremy Kasdin: The flower-shaped starshade that might help us detect Earth-like planets - Jeremy Kasdin (2014)

Astronomers believe that every star in the galaxy has a planet, one fifth of which might harbor life. Only we haven't seen any of them -- yet. Jeremy Kasdin and his team are looking to change that with the design and engineering of an extraordinary piece of equipment: a flower petal-shaped "starshade" that allows a telescope to photograph planets from 50,000 kilometers away. It is, he says, the "coolest possible science."

TED: Norman Spack: How I help transgender teens become who they want to be - Norman Spack (2013)

Puberty is an awkward time for just about everybody, but for transgender teens it can be a nightmare, as they grow overnight into bodies they aren't comfortable with. In a heartfelt talk, endocrinologist Norman Spack tells a personal story of how he became one of the few doctors in the US to treat minors with hormone replacement therapy. By staving off the effects of puberty, Spack gives trans teens the time they need. (Filmed at TEDxBeaconStreet.)

TED: Jennifer Senior: For parents, happiness is a very high bar - Jennifer Senior (2014)

The parenting section of the bookstore is overwhelming—it's "a giant, candy-colored monument to our collective panic," as writer Jennifer Senior puts it. Why is parenthood filled with so much anxiety? Because the goal of modern, middle-class parents—to raise happy children—is so elusive. In this honest talk, she offers some kinder and more achievable aims.

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