VIDEO: How March Madness Affects Sports Bars & Restaurants [Under 60 Seconds]
March Madness was first used to describe high school basketball and wasn't until 1939, that the NCAA attributed the word to its basketball tournaments. Now the term represents the most talked-about basketball event in the basketball season. Before the tournament, 40 million Americans complete roughly 70 million brackets and spend nearly $9 billion on March Madness wagers. Here are some tips to keep in mind when preparing for the madness to ensue.
SPORTS: Are You Ready for March Madness? [Schedule Download]
The field is set, the bracket filled out, now what? Consider this our annual observation that while the tournament is a singular phenomenon in the US sports calendar, it’s also not exactly what we hope in the sports bar biz. The exception, of course, is the Thursday and Friday of the first weekend. With 16 games each day and all 64 teams still hopeful to advance, this can get hectic. This blog post also contains a free download the 2019 March Madness tv schedule.
DID YOU KNOWS…
How Was Your St. Paddy’s Day?
Despite criticism in recent years, St. Patrick’s Day is still hugely popular with young Americans. According to the National Retail Federation, 72% of those aged 18-34 planned to celebrate this year. Total U.S. spending was expected to reach $5.6 billion in 2019, a slight decrease on $5.9 billion last year with average spending expected to be just over $40. Boston is another great city for St. Patrick's Day festivities and it claims the title as the most Irish city in the country with 20.4% of its population reporting Irish ancestry. Here are some more St. Patrick’s Day stats. How did your bar fair?
First in Line for Concert Tix
While the K-pop band BTS and Ariana Grande have some similarities, even for artists that aren’t obviously similar, like Taylor Swift and Drake, most site traffic was driven by women on the day of major tour announcements. The Rolling Stones was the only band this wasn’t true for, where about 56% of site traffic was driven by men on the day that the Stones’ No Filter tour aired.
Sick Stay Home
Now under new management, Chipotle has bounced back from its rough patch of foodborne illness scandals, plus other poor PR issues. Bloomberg did a story on the company’s bounce back, including making sure sick employees stay home and that each store has enough forks (we didn’t realize they ever had a fork shortage, tbh).
IS THE FUTURE 4 DAYS?
Why it matters to you: Shake Shack tests a four-day work week...hmmm.
You may have heard, there’s a labor shortage out there and it’s severely impacting the restaurant industry. Ok, master of the obvious, but operators ARE struggling to staff and that appears to have motivated Shake Shack to test a four day work week. Yup, you read that right, a four-day work week in the restaurant business. It is heresy, right? Well maybe not.
At a recent conference, Shake Shack CEO Randy Garutti divulged that they are testing four-day work weeks for full-time employees. In the face of so much competition, Shake Shack is attempting to attract full time folks through creative means. The question that needs to be answered is how it will manage those changes, to whom will the four-day work week apply and will it impact wages?
It might also be much ado about nothing. I mean, don’t we already have folks that work four 10-hour days per week? It might be different in fast casual for Shake Shack, but in full-service restaurants, we have used these flexible schedule approaches forever. So, while we are observing this one, it’s unlikely to change much for our segment of the industry.
THE TOP OF THE HILL
Why it matters to you: Women’s Foodservice Forum CEO Hattie Hill is retiring and it’s a loss for us all.
When Hattie Hill took over the Women’s Foodservice Forum (WFF) in 2013, she turned two years of financial losses into a 25% increase in revenue and forged a bold new strategic direction for the organization. If you don’t know the WFF, they advocate for women in our industry on issues like pay disparity, work place fairness, and social issues affecting female staff. Her 5+ years at the helm of WFF has seen them create a partnership with one of the most respected management consulting firms in the world, McKinsey & Company, and become a true thought and policy leader in our industry.
The study that WFF manages with McKinsey puts into numbers the real circumstances that many women in our industry are subject to as employees. They have quantified the pay differences between men and women and continue to highlight the way forward to create fairness and equity for all people in the restaurant vertical. It’s a loss that she is leaving. We, at The Rail, salute her for the fantastic effort she has given and know that her organization will continue their mission with her vision to lead them forward.
[Source: Restaurant Business Online]