I find myself dining more and more often in fast-casual restaurants rather than ones that offers full service (and I use that term loosely). Why? As well as being more in control of the timing of my experience, I find the amount of hospitality in many fast-casual chains equal to or better than many of the casual full-service restaurants – for less money. What else could you learn from a CASE (copy and steal everything) study of today’s successful concepts? Think hospitality instead of service.
On the recent holiday to Pei Wei menu, PF Chang’s fast-casual concept, using a colleague of mine (his first time to eat there), he was impressed with the friendly food delivery and offer to have drink refills for us. Drink refills? Many of us could offer that little dose of hospitality in our restaurants. Heck, at most full-service restaurants today, you’re lucky should you get a refill in a timely manner. Will that construct your sales? Certainly!
The Golden Corral in my neighborhood includes a very Cheers-like atmosphere, where the guests request specific servers as well as the managers are out front and manage to know everyone. Wonder why they carry on and build sales and have long lines? The guests possess a better experience at a discount coin. You have the capacity to create an event like these within your building as well–if you move out front.
Leave your kitchen tiles and spread some smiles working the guests’ tiles. Get on the other part from the counter and view your guests’ meals. Inject some hospitality to your restaurant. Why do you reckon so many people glance at the drive-through? They could not want to come inside. Develop a better experience and they’ll be lining up. Research indicates that dine-in guests spend more money, so allow them to have a good reason ahead on in!
Hospitality Rally – Give a dose of hospitality to your pre-shift meetings. Teach your men and women to connect with your diners–and this begins with you. It will take no more some time and costs forget about money for somebody pre-bussing a table to smile, learn how the meal is, and discover if they need anything else. Your rally should give attention to the way the interactions happen, not on a series of steps and tasks the guest doesn’t worry about.
A recent trip through my local Chick-fil-A drive-through opened my eyes to the difference between service and hospitality. I ordered a sizable drink and pulled around for the window. The attendant passed me a straw and informed me the total was $1.29. I gave her the money, and she joked which was only for the straw–the soda was an additional $1.29. A little laugh from someone jblstb her job and showing it for the guests. Services are filling the need–if so, the necessity being “I’m thirsty”–and will be delivered by way of a vending machine or numerous places. Hospitality, though, differs. It happens through people. Our family dines at peiwei menu frequently for this very reason. How could you have the transition in your restaurant?
Cashiers, phone, and drive through. A good rule of thumb would be to greet the guest by name. If you don’t recognize them, their name is Welcome. Start their experience off on the right foot. Positive, reassuring responses like “great choice,” “that’s my favorite,” “it’s our most popular items,” “which also goes well with ___” will make sure the guest feels good about their order. Simply replace the nod, non-acknowledgement, or “okay” with eye-to-eye contact and a positive response. Watch the sales accumulate.