How to Successfully Manage a Café

How to Successfully Manage a Café

Successful cafe owners pay close attention to the details. These business people know how to manage their team members and keep their customers satisfied. The day-to-day operations of a coffee bar can change significantly. New situations pop up all the time and objectives sometimes must change quickly. That’s why cafe owners can benefit greatly from working with a professional, well-trained team.

In the following article, we’ll go over a few important tips for making your cafe the best it can be.

Value Good Employees 

Your coffee shop only functions because of your staff, not necessarily the manager or owner. Leaders obviously provide a game plan for how operations should be handled, but it’s still the baristas and cashiers that make those plans a reality. Your team members make all the consumable products, assist customers, keep the cafe clean, and are usually the first ones to resolve a crisis.

Your employees are the public face of your brand. For this reason, proactive cafe owners place a high value on empowering their staff members rather than micro-managing day-to-day activities. By providing extensive and ongoing training, your employees will be better able to service patrons, which means more repeat business. Failure to develop a trusting, positive work relationship with your staff can cause a crisis in company morale which will not go unnoticed by customers.

Become a Hands-On Manager

Cafe owners that are able to complete all daily tasks are better prepared to effectively resolve problems. Your goals should include being a hands-on manager who can confidently prepare drinks, operate the equipment, and knows how to complete each employee’s tasks. Spending plenty of time talking with and observing your employees will give you insight into developing solutions to their work problems. By committing to being a hands-on manager, you’ll better connect with your employees which leads to a more positive work environment and better working relationships.

Define Expectations and Ask for Feedback

A popular cafe management tip is to understand the importance of shared goals and expectations. Establishing clear standards for customer service, cash management, cleanliness, product quality, and other matters is critical. Instead of assuming your employees will know what is best for the coffee bar, you can guide them toward the best outcomes and practices.

Asking for input from your team members is a wonderful way to improve operations. Set aside time in your busy schedule on a regular basis (weekly or monthly) to talk with each employee about any concerns or ideas they have about workflows. Being a sounding board for your employees can help them feel appreciated and help you discover ways to make your business better.

Minimize Employee Turnover

Employee turnover in any industry can cause business setbacks. Constant hiring and training of new people will take up a lot of your time. Plus, each time an experienced team member leaves and a new person is hired the remaining employees may find themselves in a bit of turmoil. That’s why it’s important for cafe owners to hire wisely and then work hard to retain their employees.

Keeping current staff members should be a top priority since customers are also impacted. Patrons feel comfortable having their regular barista prepare a latte or having the usual cashier ring up their order. Remember, cafe customers not only enjoy the drinks but also the interactions with friendly, familiar faces.

Learn How to Handle Customer and Employee Conflicts

Good service makes first-time visitors become regular customers. Repeat business is often created through the small, daily interactions between employees and patrons. Good service can build up your business and bad service can tear it down. Excellent coffee bar managers learn to juggle the needs of customers, like dietary restrictions or long lines, quickly and politely. You may not be able to prevent issues from arising but you can do your best to solve them.

You’ll also have to be aware of any employee conflicts as well. Many business owners recommend creating a system which allows team members to express their concerns to you in a private setting. Make sure your staff understands the importance of not acting out in front of patrons. Conflicts should be resolved away from patrons.

Consider Insurance for Café Owners

You’ll be working hard to develop a popular and profitable neighborhood coffee house. No matter how well you manage the cafe, there’s always a possibility that accidents can happen. At those times, your business insurance could have you covered. Take the time to talk with an experienced insurance agent about the benefits of buying insurance for café owners. Or simply visit a comparison website for business insurance in New Zealand.

Once Again…Feedback Is Everything

Earlier we mentioned the significance of working closely with staff so you understand their daily tasks, as well as their daily struggles. We can’t stress enough the need to solicit feedback from your team members and put it to good use.

Giving your employees a time and place for feedback will help you establish more trusting relationships while also helping your business. Not only should the team members be able to share with you their feedback about work but you should be able to provide them performance feedback too. Compliment employees when they do something well and correct employees in private when they do not. Feedback should always be constructive and professional, not personal criticisms.

In the end, your crew can make or break your cafe’s success. So take the time needed to know your employees well. Work closely with your team and engage with them often. You can’t do that from behind your office door or during an occasional staff meeting. Always provide team members with opportunities to discuss their concerns and suggestions.

As a cafe manager, it’s good to appreciate each employee’s unique background, skills, and abilities. Your team members are the face of your cafe and they collectively can make your dream a tremendous success or a complete disaster.

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