Restaurant Operators - What Skills do you Need


A tongue-in-cheek look at the skills required to operate a restaurant but?on he whole they come pretty close to the truth.

People Skills,

You need to be good with people, because you will have different customers almost every day, you will have repeat customers who have higher expectations, a high-maintenance shift-based staff to manage, suppliers who won't always meet your expectations or time frames and creditors who want their money now.

Accountancy skills

You will have to balance the books, arrange the daily banking arrange for staff wages to be paid, manage your ratio of costs to profit margins, manage your BAS payments, pay your creditors on time.

Creative Skills

You will need to monitor your advertising campaign. Create promotions, change the menu periodically and provide an atmosphere that is conducive to return patronage.

Management Skills

You will need to maintain security, monitor the opposition and stay ahead of any potential problems or conflicts.

You will need to manage: unhappy customers suppliers who are no longer reliable or now too expensive the waste management people the cleaners the new staff the old staff the part-time staff the full-time staff the staff that don't show up the bar staff the kitchen hands the chef

Budgeting Skills

You will need to manage the restaurant promotions and image, replace broken crockery and lost and stolen items, and get by without everything you think you really need.

Human Resource Skills

You will need to adjust staffing levels to meet customer demand. Interview prospective staff, manage your shift managers, have extra staff available on call, and try to manage a day off for yourself now and again.

Negotiating Skills

You will need to handle any number of people including: the landlord the bank manage your silent partner(s) the local council the health inspector the pest exterminator your suppliers

Culinary Skills

You don't have to be a chef but you must know enough to be in control such as: cuts of meat and types of fish, and their prices seasonal produce the market rate for fresh produce storage times and conditions spices and condiments comparative rates between suppliers specific delivery requirements produce rotation and use-by dates kitchen equipment presentation and preparation times

You will require the patience of a saint. You will be open six or seven days a week. You will definitely start earlier than you thought and have later nights than you bargained for. It is relentless day in and day out with no sign of a break.

And you still want to get by with an Accountant who just does tax returns?

About the author

Kelvyn Peters CPA and Associates is a specialist small business adviser with a particular expertise in the hospitality industry. Kelvyn Peters CPA, our founder, is a director of Restaurant & Caterers Queensland Inc.

Kelvyn has devoted over 20 years to research and experimentation to perfect the delivery of advice to small business.

We are providing it to our local clients now we are going global?and remember we are only an e-mail away

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