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NRA Feature: Maintain Staff Engagement in Your Restaurant

This article originally appeared on www.restaurant.org. Keeping your employees engaged can lessen turnover, which can positively affect guest satisfaction and your bottom line. Take a look at how you currently interact with staff, and identify opportunities to make dynamics even stronger. Here are tips to help build and maintain staff engagement: Set expectations from the […]

This article originally appeared on www.restaurant.org.

Keeping your employees engaged can lessen turnover, which can positively affect guest satisfaction and your bottom line. Take a look at how you currently interact with staff, and identify opportunities to make dynamics even stronger. Here are tips to help build and maintain staff engagement:

Set expectations from the get-go.

To give context about your business to new hires, share your restaurant’s core values and mission. Ensure they know what duties they’re responsible for and provide training to help them learn and grow. Following these trainings, ask if they have any questions, what they’re excited about and how training could be better. Spending time with employees shows you care about their success and want them to succeed.

Build an inviting culture.

Create a consistent, welcoming team atmosphere. Consider using online training tools that include digital discussion boards and allow for friendly employee competitions through digital learning games. Develop employee recognition programs and offer exciting rewards to those who perform exceptionally well.

Communicate consistently.

When dialogue is open and frequent, you can provide constructive feedback to employees quickly and receive feedback from them, too. They might have a fantastic, creative idea that would improve teamwork, marketing efforts or other areas of your operations.

Explore cross-training.

Let staff members shadow others with different roles. For example, a food runner could observe a line cook handling food prep to learn more about how the kitchen works. In addition to adding skills and potentially new positions to their resumes, this can also kick-start camaraderie and productive conversations.

Encourage referrals.

Ask your employees if they know anyone that would be an excellent addition to the team. Referral incentives can keep the flow of talent strong. Be the restaurant where everyone wants to work; your employees can be your best brand ambassadors.

Be flexible with scheduling.

Employees have obligations outside of your restaurant, which means when they work – and when they don’t work – is very important to them. Helping your staff communicate about their schedules via software can streamline shift swaps and related communication with their managers. Submitting time-off requests and future work availability through the same system can make it easier for the whole team to see when any scheduling gaps may occur and, in turn, develop proactive solutions.

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