Planning a Successful Mother's Day
Mother’s Day can be a very busy time for most businesses, with restaurants making the top of the list. Food businesses should take advantage of the opportunity the holiday presents by taking the steps necessary to make the venue attractive to customers for the holiday, by setting the ambience and menu accordingly. However, in order to make the experience truly unforgettable and positive for customers, a restaurant must plan well in advance. Advanced planning will ensure smooth running and help create a positive environment for diners, as well as minimal stress for staff.
Choosing the StaffThough ingredients can make delicious meals, marketing can bring in the customers, and ambience can create a pleasant environment, the staff really runs the show. No day at a restaurant can go by smoothly without hardworking staff. On busy days, such as Mother’s Day, having an experienced and pleasant staff is extremely important for making the experience positive and festive for both employees and customers. From kitchen staff to wait staff, managers should plan who will be on shift and how many employees to hire for the day, in order to raise the chances of a successful experience. With the increased restaurant traffic, more staff should be on hand than on a typical day. In the kitchen, experienced cooks should man the stations in order to allow quick service and preparation of dishes which reflect the chefs’ vision. Though increased staff is required, the venue should take space and comfort for employees into consideration. Sometimes being overstaffed can lead to workers getting into each other’s way, making service less efficient. By encouraging reservations, venues may be able to get an early idea as to exactly how many staff members are necessary.
Knowing Ahead of Time
Knowing details about the Mother’s Day meals ahead of time can help restaurants plan food orders and staff scheduling properly. Encouraging reservations and having price-fixed menus are the best ways to get an idea of how to approach the service. By limiting the amount of walk-ins versus reserved tables, restaurants can get a ballpark idea of the amount of restaurant traffic to expect. In order to maximize the amount of reservations, advertising should be done well in advance and should target as many potential customers as possible. By offering price-fixed menus, chefs and cooks will know exactly what to prepare, and will be able to start the preparations in advance and focus their energies on making each dish the best it can be. When preparing foods in advance, however, it is important to adhere to food safety concerns and take precautions to prevent food spoilage. Knowledge is power, and by knowing the menu and the estimated number of diners, restaurants can consolidate the employees’ energy to bring together the best Mother’s Day experience possible for customers.
Problem-shootingAdvanced planning and preparation will give staff an upper hand at problem-shooting before and during the Mother’s Day event. For example, if English Muffins were prepared in advance, but there were a lot of take-away orders for them the morning of and the restaurant or bakery has many brunch reservations for the day, the venue will have the foresight and time to prepare a new batch for the evening. In the absence of advanced planning and preparation, the efforts of staff members will often be occupied with preparing the orders and dishes for the day, not leaving extra time to stop and plan the next batch to prevent running out. The problem-shooting aspect of planning for Mother’s Day can be a guideline when shaping the menu. Choosing a dessert menu made up mostly of items which freeze well will enable pastry chefs to prepare more than enough, and freeze those desserts which are not ordered. This will eliminate the chance of having to tell a customer “sorry, we’re out of that,” while never presenting the opportunity for the desserts to become food waste. A similar approach can be taken to planning other parts of the meal as well, though it should not dominate over the need to create a diverse and attractive menu.
Food, service, and ambience are the key factors in determining customer experience in a restaurant. Though these factors are often kept relatively constant throughout the year, on busy days such as holidays, extra effort must be taken by the venue to ensure that the quality of the customer experience is not compromised. By planning for Mother’s Day in advance, restaurants can gear themselves up for the added restaurant traffic and prevent unnecessary stress for employees. Advertising early, taking reservations in advance, planning price-fixed menus, and hiring the right amount of experienced staff by making educated predictions about the restaurant traffic, will help restaurants stay on top of customer demands and enable them to offer customers the best Mother’s Day experience possible.