In an excerpt from his book Copy This! in Fortune Small Business magazine, Kinko’s founder Paul Orfalea pointed out a valuable lesson for managers and owners of quick- and limited-service restaurants. When asked who really runs the business, Mr. Orfalea correctly points out that “a co-worker with a bad attitude can (a) steal your money or products, (b) fudge on his hours, (c) undermine your relationship with customers, and (d) poison the morale of everyone else. ”
As the owner or manager of the business, therefore, you really aren’t running the business - your frontline employees who interact with the customers and the behind-the-scenes production staff are the ones who do. If 20 percent of your staff exhibits one of the previously mentioned behaviors, too many of your guests are exposed to them and will flee your business.
Since you likely don’t want someone running your business who will steal products or hours or negatively impact the customer or team relationship, get rid of them! Bringing new blood into a negative environment won’t solve the problem. It’s like putting a clean gym shirt into a smelly locker - the new shirt smells bad really quickly.
Having systems in place for employees to follow (to enhance speed, quality, and accuracy) while allowing a little room for their personality to shine and enhance hospitality will ensure your bosses are successful. Systems create winning shifts and guests. Winning improves morale - NOT the other way around.
Now that you know who the boss is (and perhaps swallowed your ego), ensure these bosses are adequately prepared and trained to ensure their success and yours. Remove the bad bosses and let them work for the competition. It’s never too late to change. Today’s guests, and tomorrow’s, will appreciate it.
T. J. Schier is service professional, consultant and speaker with over 20 years experience in operations and training. Founder and president of Incentivize Solutions and podTraining, T. J. has helped numerous clients enhance their service and training programs and spoken to tens of thousands of managers, franchisees and operators in various fields. Visit http://IncentivizeSolutions.com/ for more info motivating today's employees, training today's generation and delivering outstanding guest service; or http://podTraining.us/ , a unique new system and the foundation of ‘i-learning’ - using the device of today's generation, the iPod - to train your workforce.