As one of the busiest days in the restaurant industry, Mother’s Day offers a chance to increase sales and bring in future business with valuable word of mouth advertising. However, there are a number of common mistakes that often lead to Mother’s Day blunders, and these can seriously harm a restaurant’s reputation.
We’ve put together a few tips for the average restaurant owner to make the most of this Mother’s Day weekend. If anyone could understand just how much organising and multitasking is involved in getting the perfect day off the ground it’s a mother. So here are our tips to make the occasion as perfect as possible, for both restaurateurs and discerning mothers alike.
Avoid Understaffing on Mother’s Day
For one of the busiest days, it’s important that your restaurant is performing as well as it can, with all required staff members working effectively. Some may be reluctant to increase payroll, but Mother’s Day is not a day to cut corners. Bring in those experienced employees that you know can work hard and put in a good shift. Mother’s Day can be stressful and hectic despite all intentions, and an efficient and pleasant server can do wonders to make the experience that much more memorable for your clientele.
Don’t Overbook Your Restaurant on Mother’s Day
Overbooking is a fairly common occurrence amongst newer restaurants that haven’t experienced too many busy days like Mother’s Day or Valentine’s Day. It’s tempting to accept all comers, but the restaurant will quickly become in danger of overcrowding and chaos. There will be a constant turmoil as people fill and vacate tables, plus it puts a lot of unnecessary pressure on the staff. An overbooked restaurant will find it nigh impossible to serve everyone acceptably in a timely manner, and there’s no guarantee that tables will be ready when they’re required to be. Making these mistakes is just asking for angry customers, and in the days of TripAdvisor, Yelp and other review sites, this could kill a fledgling restaurant.
An efficient way of avoiding overbooking is to create different seating times. This way you can have a clear idea of how many people you can seat at any time, and be ready to have the tables ready for the next group. Many restaurants place their seating times at either 90 or 120 minute intervals. Special seating times like this helps coordinate the masses and structure any unnecessary kitchen chaos as well. Make sure that whoever is in charge of the reservation book knows when to stop taking reservations for each seating.
Plan a Special Mother’s Day Menu
Many restaurants run a special Mother’s Day menu with a short but balanced selection of dishes. This works to give focus to both the staff and clientele; the ticket time will decrease, as well as the time that it takes the customer to order. With a smaller menu, you need to be sure that the kitchen staff as well as the serving staff are all aware. Arrange pre-shift meetings and/or tastings with the staff for them to become acquainted with the menu so that they can both produce them and explain them immaculately to the guests.
Add Finishing Touches
Don’t let the bustle of the day take focus from the charm of your restaurant. Consider offering each lady a complimentary glass of Champagne as they enter, and/or a flower as they leave – complimentary chocolates after the meal would of course always be a welcome addition, no matter how full they may be feeling! For extra points, brand those chocolates with your restaurant’s logo to reinforce future brand awareness.
Finally, don’t forget to enjoy the day yourself, Mother’s Day is but once a year. At Boost Capital we know that running a successful restaurant can be tricky in the busy periods, as much as in the downtime, but we’re confident that with appropriate funding, your restaurant business can flourish year round and for years to come.