This article has reference to my 19 years as a manager and multi unit owner in the fast food industry. When I sold my restaurants in 2005 I had 8 employees that had been with me for over 5 years. This is almost unheard of in this high turnover industry.
Imagine that you walk into my restaurant and are greeted and asked if you would like your favorite sandwich and toppings by an employee that knows your name and favorite sandwich. As a business owner you obliviously understand the value to your business and continued sales growth of having the same 4 people on the lunch line each day. People like to go for lunch where they are greeted and recognized, where the staff is friendly and makes them feel like they are glad they came.
What is the secret to having a competent friendly customer oriented staff? I believe it is an attitude towards people and the value that you as a business owner put on employees. I have heard very negative comments from business owners towards their staff. These people hold your ability to produce income in your fast food business in their hands.
Creating an environment conducive to having motivated and happy employees is an attitude.
Let me give you an example of a great lesson I learned when I was an employee. I was a salesman for a water softener company, and on one great Monday I sold 6 units, quite a feat. No matter how late I worked I had to report to my boss. I called in the 6 sales and was heartily congratulated. Them my boss asked me to be at work at 7:30 the next morning. I was very tired but complied. We got into the company van and headed out on a 3 hour drive with two company techs. The explanation given was I had worked hard and deserved a break.
We arrived at the “tech” meeting to find out actually it was a sales meeting. To begin the meeting they asked about yesterdays sales. Asking by hand how many had 1 sale. Many hands went up, then 2 and most hands dropped and then 3 and all but two hands dropped after three only my hand was up. When 35 sales pros in the meeting found out I had sold 6 units they all wanted to know my secret. It was an ego boost that lasted for weeks.
I would have walked on water for that boss and always worked very hard for him because my efforts were appreciated and I knew it. That is how to treat an employee. All people have value and as business owners it is time to expect more out of your employees if done right they will respond. Watch for the next three articles.