Flavour of November: One big happy family?

Oct 30, 2016

When it comes to hospitality and foodservice, your staff are the lifeblood of your business. They’re also the most expensive aspect of it, and it’s estimated that it costs more than twice an employee’s salary to find and train a replacement, which means that finding and hanging on to good staff should be a priority.

Staff turnover of any kind lowers the productivity of a business, decreases company knowledge on the ground, and has the potential to increase the workload of remaining staff.

That said, a bad employee can be equally costly. For a customer facing business, a surly staff member who upsets clients or creates a bad atmosphere can result in loss of business and reputational damage. Being prepared to cull your business of ‘dead wood’ employees is just as important as hiring and keeping the good staff.

Career waiters and Maitre D’s, although common in Europe, are rarely found in Australia, and the nature of the industry we work in means that many of our employees are transient and often on visas that negate permanency or long-term commitments.

This constant movement of staff means that businesses are more likely to lose good staff, even when conditions are the best you can possibly provide. But that’s not always a bad thing – you may find that having incredible workers who are only with you for a short period is better for your business than having a full time roster of mediocre permanent employees.

Top 3 tips to keeping good employees:

  • Build relationships. Getting to know your staff, and making them aware that they are an integral part of the business goes a long way to people feeling valued, and breeds loyalty.
  • Recognise contributions. If someone is performing well, let them know. Reward them wherever possible. Give them increased responsibility and tie them to the business further.
  • Provide competitive benefits. Money isn’t everything – but it’s a big thing to a lot of people.
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