You might find several reasons you should not go ahead and start your own restaurant. Probable reasons might include the expense, the risk due to a large number that fail, and of course the fact it takes a lot of time to manage this type of business. Nevertheless, if you have determination to follow your dream of owing your own restaurant, then you can benefit from the following tips.
- Have a clear vision of what kind of restaurant you want to establish. Gather all the details you need and put it in writing so you won’t forget. Think about the décor, set up, types of food or desserts, etc.
- Study and inquire about any regulatory requirements within the area where you live, both city and state. Prepare all the paperwork, including building codes regarding kitchen exhaust systems, fire exits, interior finish requirements, etc.
- Search for the perfect location for your restaurant. A demographic study of the surrounding proves pertinent. Determine the market possibility in that area, including possible spaces for parking. Use your negotiation skill when obtaining a lease so you can afford the space.
- Strategic planning for a menu proves paramount. You will base the equipment in which you need to invest and the layout of your space in which you have that equipment installed on the requirements of your menu. Consider buying second-hand equipment to save more money.
- Acquire the money you need. Creating a detailed business plan and forming a small private corporation or starting partnership will do. If you think you will need more money, you will need to decide how to raise it. Restaurant consultants blame the high rate of new restaurant failures on lack of capital.
- Provide extra space. Your restaurant should have enough room for dining, kitchen, dishwashing, storage, bathroom and clerical work. A premeditated floor planning will allow you to use and maximize the place.
- Plan your dining area layout. You might have already calculated the number of seats you want, but consider as well the number of customers who will prefer not to occupy corner seats. Also, avoid placing a table in the middle of the room. “Nestle tables—particularly two-tops—against low divider walls or other architectural features,” says restaurant owner and designer Pat Kuleto.
- Consider food preparation safety when planning the kitchen layout. You should have enough ventilation, light and space for people to move around without bumping each other during the busiest time.
- Include graphics in your signage, menu and the overall look of the restaurant. This plays a very important role.
- Lighting effect prove essential. Look for dramatic lighting on the tables to highlight the food and help create ambiance. This will also make your guests feel and look good.
- Create and develop your menu. Conduct food tastings until you achieve the desired consistency. Food should look good on the plate. Plan carefully your menu pricing. Proofread your final menu before sending it to the printer.
- Determine if you would want to offer bar service. Apply for a wine and/or liquor license if so.
- Research insurance options for your restaurant to avoid the hassle of possible financial problem. The National Restaurant Association proves an outstanding resource for insurance-related information.
- Hire and train your staff before opening. You will need the best people who can run the kitchen as effectively as the person who runs the business. Staff should have the capability of providing good customer’s service to maintain customer loyalty.
- You must have an accounting and bookkeeping system. Monitoring your stocks can help you stay worry-free about dishonest employees.
- Assign an honest and efficient employee to manage and supervise the storage areas. Emphasize to that person that he should check all deliveries and monitor food inventory regularly.
- Get a permit to operate by passing the inspection of food safety.
- Welcome your diners.
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About the Author: Vanessa Page works a career counselor in one of the leading firms in Los Angeles. She is also a blogger and gives tips on how people can tackle their work and career issues. She has 8 years of experience in this field.