We’ve all come across them at some point. The boss who is best friends with everyone on the staff, the player who knows everyone in the business and the hot-tempered chef – who loves to cook but doesn’t know how to run a business. Do you recognise yourself in any of these really typical restaurant characters?
1. The partner owner
The business owner wants to make everyone happy – both guests and employees, but doesn’t really have much ownership structure in everyday life. What the friend owner also lacks is a bit of fucking manners, which can result in the staff doing a bit as they please. And it can work! When everyone feels comfortable at work, the pub goes well – but sometimes it can also go really, really badly. The Companion Owner has no rules or guidelines. The advantage is that good staff take responsibility for themselves, which can contribute to an even better atmosphere in the friend’s restaurant. But if you have ignorant employees who don’t know what to do – well, then it can be chaos. The friend-owner is a positive but somewhat naive person who doesn’t have a clue what it actually means to own something. The owner’s responsibility is that the restaurant runs, that everyone gets paid and that everything is done by the book – but the probability that the friend-owner will succeed in the long term is perhaps only 30%.
2. The contractor
The entrepreneurial scrooge is a real businessman to restaurant owner. Sometimes the person in question has a background as a restaurateur and a good knowledge of the industry – but many times this typical owner is just someone who has eaten in a restaurant and set out to start their own restaurant. The contractor knows nothing about roles, how to cook or the flow of the restaurant. But he’s got a good grasp of the financial side of things – and he’s a real geek, too. The goals are crystal clear (and many times too high!). The result of the entrepreneur’s determination? To make money, of course! If the restaurant is doing badly, well, then they get pissed off, frankly. The entrepreneurial scout can be someone who is in charge of the business on the spot – or who runs the whole pub remotely. If you have good staff and good chefs (and have also managed to build a good brand), the chances are 50/50 that the entrepreneurial scout will actually do well. So good that it’s almost worth opening another restaurant!
3. The cook
The chef has been cooking all his life – and is good at it. This is a responsible person who knows his way around a kitchen, but who may not always be prepared for what it means to run a restaurant business (or a business in general!). This person can have a hot temper, which keeps the rest of the staff on their toes. Often the chef relies a little too much on the staff and leaves the responsibility to others for lack of leadership. His driving force and interest is food. A chef is not a skilled entrepreneur and it is the business side of things that gets knocked on the head. Raw materials may be too expensive, staff may not get rest and queues may be too long. After all, there’s a lot that goes into how a chef will do – from where you open, who you know and who you work with. Therefore, there is almost a 50% chance for the chef to succeed.
4. The restaurateur
The restaurant manager is a young and funny guy who knows just about EVERYONE. This person has worked quite a lot in restaurants before and may have had roles such as head waiter, kitchen manager, sous chef or something else with a bit more responsibility. Liraren is friends with many in the industry – and is extremely keen to work hands-on with his own successful concept. With his valuable contacts, the restaurateur has a great chance of long-term success – despite his relatively young age. The advantage is that he knows most things, having worked in good restaurants in the past. The foreman is used to charging, knows which raw materials are good to work with, has an eye on pricing and purchasing. For the restaurateur, ownership and the restaurant is not just a way to make money – it should be an experience for everyone involved! Will it be successful? Yes.
5. The hobbyist
This person often does not have a background in the restaurant industry – nor in entrepreneurship. The hobbyist has decided to open a restaurant for some other reason! They may simply enjoy food (and consider themselves good at cooking at home on the stove), have accidentally inherited a restaurant, or have been asked to run the restaurant part of their mother’s cousin’s campsite. Characteristically, the person in question has no personal connection to restaurant ownership – but what is there is the will to succeed. However, the lack of knowledge about how to run a restaurant or handle cooking for more than one person in the family means that the hobby pub owner may find it difficult. He may have a 10% chance of succeeding with his tavern – it’s all about external circumstances (and of course attitude!).