Let’s admit it. The restaurant business is one of the most enjoyable businesses in the world. With all the stress, turmoil and challenges that we face on a daily basis, the enjoyment we get from owning restaurants is uncomparable. The greatest pleasure we ring out of the business is the enjoyment, I think, of meeting other owners and immediately being able to relate to what each person has experienced, laugh at it and then later, as we revisit the thoughts, have an unspoken respect for the person we just met. I have yet to enter a restaurant, or an environement filled with restaurant owners, where everyone didn’t have similar stories of different heights. That’s why we as owners continue to dine out once we are out of the business. We still want to meet other owners. For whatever reason, we want to stay connected. That club membership is highly respected and coveted for the real restaurateur.
Last weekend I had the pleasure of being invited to a party at the home of a well known California restaurant owner. He has since divested himself of his holdings in his famous bewery concept but is planning, plotting and designing his next venture in food and brew.
We immediately began speaking of restaurant experiences. And told tales, some tall, I am sure, and some comic, about the business. When I left the party, I told my wife how great it was to meet someone else who had ventured to heights so many dream about but so few succeed in.
Today, do yourself a favor. Take a short break. When it slows down, and the crowd seems light, and the tables less full, walk outside, look to your nearest competitior, and go have a cup of coffee with him or her. Spend some time discussing how business is. Talk a bout the trends in the neighborhood. Begin to plan a special event- a pub crawl- a progressive dinner night- a joint weekly special in June.
And, yo’lll find that one of the greatest assets we all have, are the friends we make in the business.