The Importance of Loyalty When Breaking into the Bar and Restaurant Business
Essentially, Specialty Group deals with two types of individuals: those who are in the restaurant and bar business and those who want to be in the restaurant and bar business.
Those who want to be in our industry must spend time creating relationships that they can truly count on. When people first get into this business, they are extremely vulnerable, prone to mistakes and struggling to make their Bar or Restaurant a success. Unfortunately, they are sometimes taken advantage of. They learn very quickly who can be trusted and who cannot if they want to survive.
Here at Specialty Group, we take great pride in being open, honest and transparent with each and every one of our clients – and in this industry, that’s not always so easy to come by. In fact, one of the first things you’ll learn when breaking into the Pittsburgh bar and restaurant industry is that there are a lot of wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing out there.
The importance of working with loyal, trustworthy companies cannot be underestimated or undervalued, and here’s why.
When You Need Something, You Need It!
The fact of the matter is that so much of your bar or restaurant’s success will depend on your interactions with and trust with so many people and companies. When you need your beer order by 5:00, for example, or when your ice machine breaks on a Friday night, you need to be able to rely on other people to show up on time and help you out. Just imagine what your Saturday night business would be like if your POS system simply stopped working, you can’t accept credit cards and you couldn’t reach anyone because it was the weekend.
So how, exactly, do you get someone to make you a priority on a Saturday night and come fix your POS system or ice machine on the spot? When you get what you need, when you need it, from a particular supplier, focus on your relationship with that individual or company to grow and strengthen it. Loyalty is imperative to those professionals and suppliers who partner with your business.
Creating Loyalty in the Bar & Restaurant Business
Essentially, our industry is one big, ongoing interaction amongst various people and companies. Just about everyone with whom you interact is a supplier of some sort, a salesman pushing his or her product or service. So when you do find an honest and reliable needle in the haystack of duds, put in the effort to hang onto it.
Over the years, you’ll go through many of these suppliers and their companies. It is very rare that a purveyor is able to keep the same account in the bar and restaurant business for extended periods of time unless he is always spot on, there in a pinch, on time, honest, no excuses.
What is evident about the majority of the owners I have dealt with over the years is that when they are consistently treated well, they are loyal to their suppliers in return. This is one of the most effective things you can do to help build up your business and create the vital relationships you’ll need to help you succeed.
People who have success in the bar and restaurant industry know how critical it is to have these honest, mutually respectful relationships. So when someone does treat you right and is willing to put their neck out for you, return the favor by remaining loyal to them as well. When you become price or fee centric you can end up paying a much bigger price in the end if your business interruptions could have been avoided working with a professional.
The Bottom Line
Two of the most desirable virtues are, arguably, loyalty and trust. While these are traits that we look for in nearly any interaction we have with others throughout our lives, finding loyal and trustworthy people in the bar and restaurant industry is especially important. Keep your eyes peeled for people and companies that earn your trust, and when you do spot one of these gems, reciprocate the same honesty and loyalty that you expect from them.
Don’t underestimate the power of arming yourself with a team of the most honest and reliable people in the game. This can be a cutthroat business, and good allies may mean the difference between your success and failure.
If you need help getting into or out of this industry, get in touch with one of our trusted and experienced licensed professionals here at Specialty Group, where we always have your best interests in mind!