During holidays or special occasions many decide to share a delicious meal with friends or family to celebrate the occasion, especially during Christmas and Thanksgiving. To relax and forgo busy meal preparations, customers may choose to share a stress-free and relaxing meal at their favorite food establishment. For restaurants, this can mean a never-ending stream of customers and staff struggling to keep up with the demand. Keep your restaurant prepared for busy holidays by following these tips and tricks that are guaranteed to keep your restaurant running smoothly and make the holidays a success!
There’s nothing worse than starting the holiday season by realizing you’ve forgotten to stock up, clean, or even decorate! Start planning and preparing for the holidays plenty in advance so your restaurant has all the stock necessary to keep up with excess demand, and doesn’t feel rushed or unprepared when the holidays come around.
Use black/white reversible write on boards and markers to make a list of tasks to be completed and keep tasks organized. This way, each staff member knows their assigned job and can even make suggestions they think will improve efficiency with regards to service, or customer experience.
Hold a meeting with staff well in advance to brief them on upcoming holidays and proper restaurant practices and procedures. Allow them to ask any questions they may have, and ensure there is no confusion with regards to how the restaurant will operate. Confusion and disorganization can prove to be disastrous, especially when customers are lining-up outside to enjoy a night at your restaurant!
No diner ever likes to hear the phrase, “unfortunately we don’t have this food item tonight.” Don’t let your customers go without their favorite food item, stock up before the holidays hit to ensure you have everything you need to make your restaurant run smoothly, including tableware and cleaning supplies!
CiboWares’ selection of towels and wipes, grill cleaning supplies, and scouring products are sure to keep your restaurant sparkling clean during the holidays. Don’t forget the gloves, aprons, chef hats and hairnets. No one likes to eat on improperly cleaned tables or find a stray hair in their food, especially on special occasions with family and friends!
Impress customers with stylish tableware and glassware and use beverage napkins, dinner napkins, placemats, stirrers and straws, and picks and skewers to add a few accent colors and convenience to any table. Looking to add a fun and festive touch? Foil fireworks drinking straws, Mexican Fiesta placemats, American flag picks, heart topped bamboo picks, or sports picks are ideal for celebrating everything from Cinco de Mayo to New Year’s Eve to the Super Bowl.
Ensure Service Runs Smoothly
Hostess signs are ideal for use during busy nights, especially when the hostess or host may have to step away for a moment to help other customers or tables. Featuring messages such as “Welcome,” “Please Wait To Be Seated” and “Please Seat Yourself,” they can let customers know where to go and alleviate stress on staff. For take-out locations, these functional signs also feature the message, “Place Your Order Here” to keep orders and pick-up organized.
OPEN transparent LED signs and tabletop “Reserved” signs are perfect for letting customers know your establishment is open for the holidays, and ensuring that reserved seating stays reserved for customers enjoyment and convenience.
Having trouble accommodating long-lineups of waiting customers? Use crowd guidance belts to section off places you wish customers to wait, and to ensure those who waited longest get served first.
Have Some Fun and Experiment!
Busy holiday seasons may seem like a risky time to try something new, but adding a new special or practice may prove to be just the thing your establishment needs to gain a few extra regulars after the holidays die down.
While customers may love your signature soup or fried chicken and mashed potato special, bring something new to the table by adding a holiday-themed special or menu. If the special or menu is successful, it can help to reduce stress on your kitchen and add something new and exciting to customer's experience. Display your new Christmas themed turkey dinner menu or Valentine's Day themed desserts to keep customers informed about new dishes.
Show Your Appreciation
Finish off your dinner service by thanking customers for their business. Have staff check in on customers during the meal - especially during busy dinner service - to make sure their meal is to their liking and that food and beverages standards stay top notch. Use moist towelettes with mints after a customer’s meal to show your appreciation for their business, and impress customers with your dedication to providing quality service.
Stay connected to your customers and hear their opinions by using social media. Not only can you promote your new dishes and holiday specials, but you will promote your restaurant and show your dedication to interacting with customers and your community. Fun posts and announcements may be just the thing your restaurant needs to stay busy all year long!
Looking for more products and tips to help stay prepared for busy holidays? Check out our “Turn Up the Dial On Your Next Party” and “How to Get Social Media Right in the Restaurant Industry” blog posts, or our selection of premium quality tabletop products.
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