Are you getting your food costing basics right?

With so much focus on increasing sales, are we remembering to keep tabs on our costs too? Here are my 25 essentials to controlling food costs. I’m sure there are many more ideas, but these are the basics….. Plan menus around seasonal availability Create costing cards for every menu item, and update ingredients costs as […]


Who is responsible for a motivated team?

The headline read ‘Attitude and motivation training needed say line managers’. Surely you can’t train people to be motivated, I thought! The article went on to report that when managers were asked in an on line poll what skills their teams needed training in the most, 34% said training related to improving attitude and motivation was most […]


How customer service training impacts your bottom line (…and your stress levels)

Do you remember the storm that blew up over Marco Pierre White’s ‘demotion’ of celebrity staff from kitchen to waiter in Hells’ Kitchen.  And I couldn’t say I was surprised.  All front of house staff are key to a hotel’s or a restaurant’s success, and being there as a punishment will do nothing to promote […]


Slashing prices is not the answer

Slashing your room rates to get increased occupancy is not the answer to generating higher sales margins.  Whereas it might increase occupancy rates slightly it will have a negative impact on your customer’s perception of quality, a massive impact on your margins and, once cut, it is extremity difficult to put prices back up again. […]


How effective are your energy saving measures?

It’s good to read of hospitality businesses doing their bit for the environment. What concerns me is how ineffective these measures appear (from a customer’s perception at least) – despite the potential positive impact on their bottom line at a time when most could do with a boost.  Some do have good intentions – re-using towels, key […]


How to encourage referrals ~ Give people a reason to talk about you

Was it Oscar Wilde who said ‘There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.’? Sadly more people (especially us Brits) are likely to share their bad experiences than their good ones.  And in the current climate few people will want to spend their hard […]


Using your training budget wisely is key to controlling your training spend.

It was encouraging to read the ‘experts’ views in the Caterer in response to the question ‘Can hospitality businesses afford to cut training spend?’ (News analysis, 22 May), and I would not disagree with any of these comments. However, for the 51% who were reported to be planning to cut their training budget they might […]