How the Coronavirus Created a Worldwide Social Experiment in Our Restaurants

  1. Don’t get so lost in growing your business, though important, that you forget about the loyal customers supporting you now. Just because they are a guaranteed weekly order, does not mean that’s a forever guarantee. Put in the effort to keep them happy, they will help you with the reassurance piece via word of mouth. Thus the retain. Retain your regulars. If they feel comfortable at your establishment, they’re likely to help spread the word for you. Word of mouth is an incredibly powerful tool, don’t end up on the wrong side of it.
  2. Conflict resolution: How’s your team at defusing “Karen” and her aggression towards not wanting to wear a mask? Teach them it’s more than just an apology or a scripted safety procedure. Teach them about the human aspect of the business and what that consumer is really chasing. Find ways to accommodate, others will see your actions and gain confidence in your leadership as a brand. In this day and age, young employees are much more willing to film an angry guest and post it to social media, versus managing the situation. If they are equipped with updated tools, they’ll fight for you. Retrain your team. Relying on outdated training materials is not enough, COVID-19 has changed everything.
  3. Be obvious about your efforts with safety and sanitation. I don’t mean loudly cleaning a table for all to see, although some may find that amusing. I mean doubling-down protocols via your digital presence. Reassure your guests of your procedures. Walk them through the steps you’ve taken. Make it part of conversations. Get credit for it! Its a lot of work, show them you care. Reassure your consumer that you are safe and welcoming place to visit in any way you can.
  4. There’s not a single restaurant out there that can say that they have remained the same after COVID-19 hit. It’s impossible and that’s okay! Think of what makes you and your restaurant you; why are you unique? And why do your consumers love you? Hopefully that answer is easy for you, if not, let’s chat. This should be a pillar of your brand, a foundation for you to stand upon. Anyways, I digress, if you realize that COVID-19 took away that unique aspect of your brand, that’s a “911”. You’ve lost your identity, the reason customers came to you in the first place. Remain the same. In other words, don’t lose what makes your brand special. Keep it front of mind in all transactions. Your consumers will subconsciously feel at home and maybe for a small moment forget about the pandemic. That’s the goal, right? Create those memorable experiences by being true to your brand.




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Caleb Grose

Caleb Grose

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