GUESTS: Recovering the Public’s Trust After a Health Scandal
A restaurant owner’s worst nightmare: getting a visit from the health department and getting a failing grade or having a large amount of guests getting food poisoning. This kind of health scandal kills restaurants. There are ways you can recover, though.
DID YOU KNOWS…
19 Fancy Menu Phrases Everyone Should Know
Best Life posted a fun slide show on fancy menu phrases everyone should know. It’s obviously geared more to your guests than you, but you should look to incorporate some of these phrases in your menu where appropriate.
2018 World Cup Rankings
It's been a long road but World Cup qualifying has ended and we now know all 32 soccer teams who will compete at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Peru and Australia were the last two teams to make it, qualifying on the final day through the intercontinental playoff.
Giving Hockey a Chance
If you haven’t seen it already, Chance the Rapper was on SNL this weekend and did a sketching spoofing what it’d be like if he had to cover hockey. It’s pretty hilarious and spot on. Check the video out here.
WHEN DOES IT END?
Why it matters to you: It’s time to acknowledge that the sexual harassment problem in our industry isn’t going away anytime soon.
Well, it looks like the restaurant industry mad the big time. Yup an article published in the Washington Post on Friday asked, “Why is the restaurant industry so terrible for women?” Unfortunately, we at The Rail have been discussing this with our readers for the past year, so you are all too familiar with the answer to this question.
From Bourdain excoriating our leadership to John Besh proving him right, we have been discussing this issue because more than half of our team members are women. If you can muster any empathy, then you realize that we have created a toxic environment for women. From them being subordinated to the whims of guests to earn their tips to the boys club of most kitchens, women must tread lightly lest they be violated or run-down for speaking out.
We beseech you, please take a good hard look at your own business. Have some hard conversations with your staff bout how to ensure everyone on your team works in a safe and respectful atmosphere. A good start is to provide an anonymous survey for your total team to ask them about how they perceive your leadership. It might sting to hear the feedback, but it will surely be better than ignoring it and finding out through a lawsuit you have a problem. There are free services you can engage for a short questionnaire or you can just print it out and give it to your team. The sooner you learn how your team perceives their safety, the sooner you can fix it and be the leader your restaurant needs.
CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO…
Why it matters to you: There are few awards for keeping your place clean, but plenty of punishments for not.
With outbreaks of food-borne illness from Chipotle to Trader Joe’s, we should all take a moment and get back to basics. Take the English town of Enfield. They found a communal kitchen used by two operators had multiple instances of hygiene violations ranging from pest infestations to using a tennis racquet to manage mashed potatoes (yes, you read that correctly).
The town council fined the operators $200k for their various missteps. This was after a follow-up showed no improvement. While that seems like a ton of money and isn’t likely the fine you would receive in the US, it’s still a story worth heading.
What would it cost your business if you got a failing grade on two inspections in a row? So, while you may not be writing a check for the $200k, you could easily lose that much in good will and traffic drops because your guests don’t trust you to keep them safe with your food preparation execution. The true rub here is that no-one will ever know’if you are doing an amazing job with food safety and preparation standards unless you screw up and get someone sick. It’s a frustrating irony that if you do your best with your sanitation standards it is unremarkable, but screw up and everyone will know. Consequently, don’t screw it up.