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Business & Financial

Business & Financial

There are multiple facets to the "Business & Financial" section. First of all, your restaurant isn't just a restaurant, it's also a business. It's very possible to have a great restaurant that's a lousy business. One of the reasons independents, in particular, tend to have challenges in this area is that many people who own an independent restaurant may know a lot about running a restaurant but haven't developed the skills needed to build a successful business.

Think about the functions & skills involved in running a restaurant - management of the dining room & kitchen, menu planning & recipe development, purchasing, food preparation & delivery, customer service, hiring, staff training & development, facilities management, sanitation, etc. Now, consider the functions and skills involved in managing a business, any business - interpreting P&Ls & balance sheets, cash & financial management, business development, lender & investor relations, strategic planning & marketing, etc. It's easy to see that the knowledge and skills that might lead to the creation of a fabulous restaurant are quite different from those needed to manage and grow a successful business.

In this section, you'll get proven insights and tools to help you better understand and manage the business side of your restaurant. Our business development resources will help you create your own unique operating system. With an operating system in place, a restaurant becomes better organized, customers get more consistency, employees enjoy their jobs more and the restaurant is able to perform in a more predetermined, predictable fashion "without the owner having to be there all the time." Having a well-thought out and functioning operating system is one of the keys to creating a truly successful (and more valuable) business "and" a better life-style.

Another important part of managing the business side of your restaurant is understanding your "numbers." Everyone knows the restaurant business is a "people" business, but it's also a "numbers" business. Success can't just be measured in terms of smiling, satisfied customers but also in the cold, hard realities of facts, figures and finances.

Harold Geneen, former Chairman of IT&T said, "The difference between well-managed companies and not-so-well managed companies is the degree of attention they pay to the numbers." While the numbers are certainly critical in any business, they are probably even more so in operating a restaurant. Dealing with perishable products, lots of employees and razor thin profit margins are just a few of the factors which leaves little room for error and the need to know where you stand, from a financial perspective, quickly and often. Only your numbers can tell you if your restaurant is performing the way it should be or not.

Our financial programs, reports and tools are easy to grasp and implement. You need the benefit of having a financial approach and perspective to your restaurant. This section will help you better understand the business and financial dynamics of your restaurant so you manage it like the business it is.

DOWNLOAD: 4-Week Periods for 2015 to 2018
DOWNLOAD: 4-Week Periods for 2015 to 2018 If you want to convert to a 4-week, 13 period reporting cycle, now is the time to get ready. This series of Excel worksheets breaks down years 2015 to 2018 into 4-week periods beginning on the last Monday in 2014. . . . more >>
WEBCAST: Ordinary to Extraordinary: How to Transform Your Restaurant Into a World Class Business
WEBCAST: Ordinary to Extraordinary: How to Transform Your Restaurant Into a World Class Business This lively, fast paced webcast will show you how ordinary restaurant organizations have dramatically improved the way they do business and are now achieving stunning results. We'll examine some of the common foundational principles and practices followed by some of the most successful independent operations in the country and provide practical ways for you to implement some of these practices in your restaurant and organization. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: What Would Happen if You Got Serious About Raising the Bar?
Success Focus Video: What Would Happen if You Got Serious About Raising the Bar? What would your restaurant look like if you no longer accepted average and instead insisted on excellence? I'm sure you'd agree that, if your restaurant achieved excellence in the execution of even the most basic and routine tasks it would dramatically improve your guest experience and likely transform your financial results. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Mission Statement Worksheet
DOWNLOAD: Restaurant Mission Statement Worksheet The right mission statement, properly used, can be one of the most powerful ingredients in creating and sustaining success. For many companies it's an invaluable tool in providing direction, focus and consistency throughout their organization. Use this worksheet for crafting or improving your mission. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Customer Count Tracking Template
DOWNLOAD: Customer Count Tracking Template The Customer Count Tracking template is a great tool for forecasting sales, estimating labor needs, and setting prep levels. This easy to use Microsoft Excel form is ready for use. . . . more >>
Understanding the Implications of 'Service Charge' versus 'Tip'
by Doug Duerr, Esq.
Understanding the Implications of 'Service Charge' versus 'Tip' Why the IRS and Labor Department care if a tip is really a service charge(and why you should, too). Although the new rules were announced in June 2012, implementation was delayed until this year because of the resulting confusion and potentially negative effects. Starting in 2014, the IRS began enforcing the new rules on what is a "service charge" and what is a "tip." Here's some important details that will hopefully eliminate any confusion. . . . more >>
How to Turn Your Good Restaurant into a Great Business
by Jim Laube
How to Turn Your Good Restaurant into a Great Business Many people who open an independent restaurant don't fully understand the role they should playing as the owner. They're convinced that rolling up their sleeves and "running the restaurant" will lead to restaurant success, when in reality, this mindset is often the fatal flaw behind many underperforming or failed independent operations. Find out what independent restaurant owners SHOULD be doing instead. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Daily Sales Report Templates
DOWNLOAD: Daily Sales Report Templates Spreadsheet templates to record daily sales transactions. Includes fields to record sales, deposits, discounts & comps and paid-out detail. . . . more >>
How to Assess Whether Delivery Service Is Right for Your Restaurant
How to Assess Whether Delivery Service Is Right for Your Restaurant Do you want to deliver? For restaurants with a strong carryout program, the question is almost inescapable. Are you there yet? Delivery is not for all, nor is it a one-size-fits-all, to be sure, but with some thorough research, price calculations and other considerations, there is a way to determine its potential profitability, not just possibility. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: Why Chains Are More Profitable Than Independents
Success Focus Video: Why Chains Are More Profitable Than Independents While there are many differences between chain and independent restaurants, one of the most profound is how much money they make. This is primarily due to one key factor: systems. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: Your Most Important Customer
Success Focus Video: Your Most Important Customer Ask a restaurant owner who their most important customer is and they will probably respond by naming a big-spending regular, or a local business that calls in large catering orders. However, your most important customer probably hasn't even seen your restaurant yet. Your most important customer is the person who will eventually buy your business. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Menu & Recipe Cost Spreadsheet Template
DOWNLOAD: Menu & Recipe Cost Spreadsheet Template Knowing what each of your menu items costs to prepare is one of the most basic yet overlooked aspects of running a profitable restaurant. This comprehensive spreadsheet template will give you an easy-to-use tool to calculate and maintain the current cost of your menu and recipes. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: How Our Members are Cutting Their Costs and Improving Profits
Success Focus Video: How Our Members are Cutting Their Costs and Improving Profits Ask most operators how they plan to improve their profitability and they will likely refer to promotions, marketing, or social media. While activities like these which increase sales can certainly improve your profitability, usually the quickest and easiest way to improve your bottom line is to re-evaluate your expenses. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: Restaurant Economics 101 - What Everyone on Your Staff Should Know
Success Focus Video: Restaurant Economics 101 - What Everyone on Your Staff Should Know Your employees are clueless about how much it costs to operate your restaurant. In fact, most of your employees assume you're making a killing! Ask your employees one simple question: "Out of every dollar in sales that comes into this restaurant, how much does the owner get to keep?" . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Daily Sales & Receipts
DOWNLOAD: Daily Sales & Receipts Use this form to record your daily sales, receipts, deposits and other DSR numbers for easy entry into your accounting system. This form also simplifies the bank reconciliation process by breaking out credit card deposits by day and type and. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: Don't Get Burned By a Bad Bookkeeper
Success Focus Video: Don't Get Burned By a Bad Bookkeeper Over the years we've seen more than just a few independent restaurant owners get stung, sometimes very badly by shoddy bookkeeping practices. Find out how to get a quick read on what kind of bookkeeper you have. . . . more >>
How to Weigh the Pros and Cons of the 'Early Bird' Day Part
by Patricia Luebke
How to Weigh the Pros and Cons of the 'Early Bird' Day Part While "early bird" dining is often the butt of crude jokes about senior citizens, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't add this day part in your restaurant. Of course, it doesn't mean you should, either. As this article explains, it really gets down to your local demographics and your concept. . . . more >>
DOWNLOAD: Annual Restaurant Budget Worksheets
DOWNLOAD: Annual Restaurant Budget Worksheets How will your restaurant perform in 2015? Studies show that companies who prepare annual operating budgets are more successful than those who don't. Use this budget worksheet to quickly prepare your annual financial plan to give you and your staff specific, measurable goals throughout the coming year. . . . more >>
How to Find the Right Location for Your Next Restaurant
by Chris Tripoli
How to Find the Right Location for Your Next Restaurant You can revamp your menu, your concept, and your operational methods;however, your location is almost impossible to change, so it's important to get it right from the start. Learn how to determine the right spot for your next location . . . more >>
WEBCAST: What Every Restaurant Owner & Manager Should Know About Prime Cost
WEBCAST: What Every Restaurant Owner & Manager Should Know About Prime Cost Prime cost (food, beverage & labor) consumes in excess of 60% of sales in most restaurants. They are your largest and most volatile costs. Without good Prime Cost controls even high volume restaurants can have profitability problems. Learn how tracking your prime cost every week can significantly boost your profitability and how to do it easily and efficiently with our Prime Cost Worksheet. . . . more >>
How to Create & Use a Flash Report
by William L. Bassett
How to Create & Use a Flash Report Most restaurants prepare some type of flash report each day or for the week. You must be able to measure what you want to control. There is no one right way to design a flash report, but here are some hints and an example that will enable you to use this valuable management tool. . . . more >>
Restaurant Rules of Thumb: How Does Your Operation Measure Up to Industry Averages & Standards?
by Jim Laube
Restaurant Rules of Thumb: How Does Your Operation Measure Up to Industry Averages & Standards? A review of several key restaurant industry startup, financial & operational metrics that have proven to be reliable measurements over time. A handy guide for operators planning changes or assessing how they compare to industry averages & standards. . . . more >>
Success Focus Video: How Much Money Should Your Restaurant Be Making?
Success Focus Video: How Much Money Should Your Restaurant Be Making? Are you generating enough sales to have any hope of making a profit? Are you making as much profit as you should given your sales volume? Find out now in this short video. . . . more >>
What You Should Know About Using QuickBooks® in Your Independent Restaurant
by John Nessel
What You Should Know About Using QuickBooks® in Your Independent Restaurant Many small-business owners, especially those without a background in accounting and finance, are going to gravitate toward the relatively easy-to-use QuickBooks. This article can help you get your financial management process up and running as seamlessly as possible. . . . more >>
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