DID YOU KNOW…
Two couples got in a fistfight after one of them dropped a stinker. After the fart, words were exchanged and then the two couples traded fisticuffs, sending one person to the hospital with a dislocated shoulder. This all happened at Sloppy Joe’s in Key West, one of Ernest Hemingway’s favorite bars.
NBA FINALS FIRST
In a must win situation, you expect your best players to step up, and LeBron James and Kyrie Iriving did just that as Cleveland staved on elimination in Game 5 of the NBA Finals. Together they were the first teammates to go for 40 points each in NBA Finals history.
THIS MONTH’S RENT [Song]
Why it’s important to you: What a great way to maximize the revenue/rent equation
In New York City, there are over 2000 restaurants that aren’t open for service until 6pm. A shared work space provider named Spacious aims to take advantage of all that empty space, by renting out restaurants to freelance workers looking for a space to work during the day. The startup has a two-part mission. Certainly they are focused on leveraging all this empty space for their business model, but co-founder Preston Pesek also claims to be supporting the restaurant culture. "If we can help relieve ground-level retail pressure, then restaurants can afford to take more risks with food, or the head chef can experiment more with new concepts," Pesek said.
Maximizing the revenue/rent equation has long been a challenge for restaurant operators. You pay rent for every hour of the day, but you can’t possibly turn revenue on the same schedule. The success of this will clearly hinge on location (which is true of everything in our business), but that doesn’t mean you have to be in a big city for it to work. With the rise of the freelancer culture, the coffee shops are bursting at the seams, but your dining room might be empty. It’s certainly worth a peek, don’t you think?
WE’VE GOT A TIP FOR YOU
Why it’s important to you: TIPS embracing eLearning means better training options for your team
We have been fairly focused on eLearning these past few weeks. Our webinar on the subject has quickly filled up with eager operators that want to learn more about leveraging digital training. Therefore, TIPS announcing it has overhauled its web-based program to better accommodate mobile and tablet platforms is perfectly timed.
If you don’t know TIPS (Training for Intervention ProcedureS), then you probably don’t serve alcohol. They are the premier provider of responsible alcohol training and have pioneered the effort over the past 30 years. Their On-Premise 3.0 has embraced the cloud and makes it far easier for your team to get their responsible alcohol service certification. For you, TIPS and similar programs like ServSafe Online deliver great training resources at an extremely affordable price. This is just one example of how eLearning and change your business. So we strongly encourage you to join us for our webinar so we can help you sort through the options and make the best choice for your operation.
GET THE MAX FOR THE MINIMUM
Why it’s important to you: $15 minimum wage is gaining momentum
A New York court rebuffed a challenge by legislators to block the implementation of the $15 minimum wage by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The five-judge appellate court determined that the governor was within his authority to accelerate the wage-floor hike. The New York law is very complicated and sets different rates for different parts of the state.
The National Restaurant Association appealed the New York increase to the NY Industrial Board of Appeals, but their efforts were rejected in December. New York joined California (April) and Oregon (March) in making dramatic increases in the minimum wage law this year. This momentum toward significant increases in the minimum wage seems to be unstoppable, and those determined to implement it don’t seem mindful of the impact it will have on our industry.
IT’S THE ECONOMY, STUPID
Why it’s important to you: The condition of the labor market indicates the health of the economy
When President Obama recently pointed to our current unemployment rate of 4.7%, he asserted it signals the economy is doing great and we should be proud of how we recovered from the crash of 2008. But his own Federal Reserve Chairman, Janet Yellen, didn’t think that number by itself was a sufficient measure of the health of our labor market. Consequently, when she took office in 2014 she introduced the Labor Market Conditions Index (LMCI). This index uses 19 factors that are labor market indicators to more accurately reflect the full market circumstance and is more comprehensive than the simple Unemployment rate.
Currently, this measure shows a very weak economic condition. It is calculated using total employment and factors those wanting jobs that have given up looking into its total. By this measure, we are seeing the worst LMCI since 2008. This might explain why the Fed may hold off on raising interest rates this month as many see the last rate hike as stifling the growth and slowing the economy. It also explains why you may have seen your sales growth slow over the past year. So, have heart, you aren’t crazy and things may be getting tougher. Let’s see how the Fed responds with rates and hold our breath that $15 minimum wage initiatives, paid sick leave efforts and the new overtime rules don’t crush our already razor-thin margins.