My wife and I have restaurant conversations all the time. 

Usually, its about a recent dining experience we shared.  We usually agree on the service received, but not always on the establishment’s execution of the critical details. 

There is no magic formula for restaurant success and certainly no crystal ball to predict the future. 

Sometimes its a matter of opportunity, luck, vision or all of the above.  One thing you can count on is that knowledge will always be power!  Your approach and execution of this knowledge will likely determine your ultimate success or failure.

So today’s episode is all about the different reasons people start restaurants, their varying “zones of excellence” and degree of knowledge that is either advantage or hindrance.  Where they might excel and where they’ll run into trouble without the necessary expertise.

Stay tuned as Thea (Restaurant Rockstars Co-Founder, V.P. and My Wife) and I offer opinion and fact.  As always, food for thought...

Rock Your Restaurant,


Restaurant Rockstars Podcast





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[Start of Transcript]

You’re tuned in to the Restaurant Rockstars Podcast. Powerful ideas to rock your restaurant, here's your Host, Roger Beaudoin.


Roger:           Welcome back everyone to the Restaurant Rockstars Podcast, super excited because we have a special guest today and it's my Wife and also The Vice President of our company Restaurant Rockstars, welcome to the show Thea.

Thea:             Thanks, I'm super excited to be here; usually I'm behind the scenes.

Roger:           Yeah we have lots of conversations off the record, we dined out quite a bit and we have two different perspectives about what we see and experience in restaurants usually, what do you think about that?

Thea:             Well, I think like I would love if we could be recording Podcasts on our way home at night as we're talking about our different takes on it because I feel like you sometimes look at it from the business side of things when we leave a restaurant and I look at it from a customer perspective and sometimes we totally agree and other times we have different perspectives on what we see.

And one of the questions that always comes to my mind with any particular restaurant whether it was really great or not was how did this business get started? What was the person's initial concept? Did the restaurant stay with that same integrity of the initial concept? Did it evolve? And when we go to certain restaurants and their spectacular and out of this world and they're super busy and we go to other ones, we think “gosh how is this business even still alive?“

I always go back to how did the business get started like who started this restaurant? What was the process they went through what was their grand idea? Because I think most of the time when someone starts a restaurant, it's because they either have a bright idea. That doesn't already exist or it's an idea that exists but they think they can do it better.

Roger:           Well, there are those Mom and Pop restaurants that start because a grandma has a secret recipe, there are the Chef owned restaurants. Because Chefs had worked for other restaurants for a long time and they always wanted to own their own place and put their own stamp on it.

Thea:             And you can't blame them for that.

Roger:           Right, and then you've got entrepreneurs that see opportunity and you know they think they can either improve upon an existing concept or they've got a whole vision in their mind of what could be in a location and it's like this picture in their mind, “I can make that happen” and they go through all the steps to start it.

Thea:             So, let's talk about a couple of different those; let's imagine because I think one of the frequent scenarios is a Chef. The Chef who is a phenomenal cook, they make great food but they've never run a restaurant, they've always worked for other people and I think inevitably they almost always want to start their own restaurant.

So, what do you think if someone has been a Chef with their focus being on the quality of the food, interesting menu ideas that sort of thing. What are some of the things that they really need to become aware of if they've never been the one actually running the restaurant?

Roger:           Well, I think that comes down to leading by example because if you're a Chef and you open a restaurant, you have to recognize that you're not just cooking the food but you also have a team of other people you're going to rely on you know all the other support positions to run that restaurant whether you can afford Managers right off the bar or you just have a service team and other prep-cooks and right down to the dishwashers that you need to somehow motivate and inspire those people to fulfill your vision of what that restaurant could be and not just focused on cooking.

Thea:             Right and now the bottom line lance with them. Right all the finances that maybe they-- I think often they do have to report to an Owner or a Management team about their food costs and that sort of thing. But I think often, they write their own book for that right they're not all restaurants take that into consideration.

Roger:           Yeah, I mean we've seen lots of busy restaurants that just aren't making money for a variety of reasons and there are restaurants out there that really want to put on the show and put out pretty delicious food in they think of their places more of an art gallery and then there those places that are more like production facilities that you know are high volume and you got to crank a lot of food through there but the numbers have to work and there's everything in between.

Thea:             So, maybe one of the first things that they could do if they're a Chef that isn't used to costing out their menu to the penny that would be a great place to start. Even if their existing the existing owner isn't requiring that of them if it were me and I was going to launch off and do my own restaurant and I was the one responsible for the money and the bills I want to know what that was.

Roger:           Well, it's interesting you say that because if you're a traditionally trained Chef and you go to a culinary institution, they're teaching you not only the culinary cooking skills but they're also teaching you the business aspects knowing that a lot of the Chefs are going to end up running their own places.

And then there's the apprentice Chefs that just start working in the business maybe they started as a dishwasher and they work their way up through different line positions but they've never actually learned the numbers side, they've just gotten more and more responsibility on the cooking side and they clearly need to augment that knowledge with the financials because the costing of the menu is pretty important.

Thea:             Right, even if you're not a numbers person because I think right like we all resist what doesn't feel natural to us, so if I was really great at cooking or I had this really great concept idea, I'm not a numbers person. So, I would try and that really tedious but I think the more used to it you get and when you realize what you actually get out the other end of putting proper numbers in and the financial impact it can have on your restaurant maybe it becomes a little more interesting.

Roger:           It's empowering may you can say the same thing about the marketing side, you know it's not enough to put out great food and to have a solid profit position but it's also important to be continually marketing and you know getting people in the door all the time and now in the age of social media and online reviews, that's more important than ever.

Thea:             Right, so the Chef not only has to come up with a great recipes and run the kitchen, they have to know what the food costs are and they have to know the menu but they now have to be the one in charge of the marketing ideas.

Before, often when you're just a Chef that you know people show up and you dazzle them but now you have to be the one making sure they show up

Roger:           Well, that's when you need a partner, a solid General Manager and a lot of people go into business together because they have you know shared skills but they also have their own unique well, you would call it a zone of excellence or even his zone of genius where it's a complementary situation or one takes care of one side of the business the front of the house another takes care of the back of the house and then you know maybe somebody else does the marketing but yeah I mean you know I'm frequently talking about this is a business of a thousand details and it really is.

Thea:             Right, so what if you are a Chef and you are super popular and solid Chef and you've decided it's time to lunch out on your own, where do you go about starting with the finances of that isn't something that you already have? If you know you can be successful but you don't have the backing or you don't have the savings or for whatever reason, you don't have the access to the funds; like what would you suggest for a Chef who's like “I'm phenomenal and I'm a great leader and I think I could have a great restaurant but I just I mean money right now”

Roger:           Well, it's amazing who your customer base is especially if you're a noteworthy Chef not necessarily a celebrity, I'm not talking about that I'm talking about a Chef that has a following where people really understand and appreciate you know the food and the talent of the Chef.

So, you've got a customer base and among that customer base, you'd be surprised at how many people are you know passive investors in businesses or they want to get involved in the restaurant business it's really about getting to know who your customers are and you know you might even find as we did, that someone very close to us would be interested in even buying the business, so I would say it's dock close to home.

Thea:             Yeah, don't count anyone out you know especially if that someone who is your biggest supporter.

Roger:           Definitely and following will follow you so if you're putting out amazing food and you've become this know where the Chef if you suddenly leave the restaurant you're working out to start your own place, the marketplace is going to talk is going to become buzz for that and that's the fun part really right there's so many exciting challenges in actually opening the doors to that first place and putting your personal stamp on it and now we're talking about concept.

Thea:             Do you think they need to have formalized business plan? Like to they need to especially if numbers isn't their thing? What do you suggest they present to people? To say, “Hey, other than here's my concept, this is what I'd like to do, I'm going to open my own place, it's going to be great and shiny and awesome”

What sort of backing or projections do you think they need or do you think sometimes they really don't need any they can just intuitively fly with it?

Roger:           You know that I'm never anything about intuition, is it really is so ingrained in me to put down projections because it's like a roadmap to where you want to go and we've got a road map you're literally flying blind, it can't just be information in your head and you have a conversation with the potential investor saying, “Oh these are my ideas and this is what I want to do” because they're then going to say, “What's the return on investment? How are you going to get new customers in the door? How are you going to boost your online reviews? How are going to keep your costs in line?”

And these are questions that any you know relatively sophisticated investor are going to ask. Right down to the local bank, I mean you might walk in the door to a Bank and try to get a loan and they're going to require a business plan, that's there's just no way around that.

If you've got a friend that's a wealthy investor that knows you well and knows you've got integrity, knows you've got skills, maybe they would take a chance on you but I still think they're going to ask those questions.

Thea:             So, they're getting their projections from their from their existing restaurant or I mean if you've never been one to run projections and you need to write all of this out, where do they start?

Roger:           Well, there's a formula for everything and it can be as simple as the proposed space because obviously, you're going to have a space in mind you look at either for a restaurant that's for sale right now, you look for a space that used to be a restaurant that's vacant right now that you're going to lease for a while and you see how many seats are in the place and the new project based on your menu and with the price point you're going to charge, how many covers per night do you think you can do on an average basis you know per week? And that's going to give you a pretty good in what your revenues are going to be and then knowing how many staff are going to be on the floor both in the front in the back of the house, times the going average wage rate that you're going to pay you can put those basic numbers together and do you know monthly and yearly projections and investors are going to look for a minimum of 3years of realistic projections not pie in the sky.

Thea:             Right, because it's easy to make that up or I think in general it's easy to be optimistic right like what do you do and then what happens when the Chef does his due diligence and he says, “Well, based on this location, any works out as projections and you find the first year he's not meeting any of them”

Roger:           Well, there is such another formula called ‘The Daily Breakeven’ that is sort of the basis for this discussion also and that just tells you what point how much dollars you have to bring in every single day in an average week to not make money and not lose money where you're literally at the breakeven point and you know that's a formula into itself it's not too complicated but you literally make a list of all of your expenses on a monthly basis and then divide by 30.

And you think of absolutely everything right down to trash removal, utilities, all that sort of thing, payroll, cost of goods, rent, mortgage, you name it. You list every single expense you going to have divide by 30 and that's going to give you an idea of what your breakeven is. And then if you're reasonable or your worst case scenario projections at least meet that breakeven point then I think you're in the ball game.

Thea:             How soon should they expect to breakeven? I mean you're not talking the first month.

Roger:           No, no, I mean breakeven can take it-- depends on the concept, it depends on the number of seats, it depends on the average cheque, it depends if there's a bar business or not. I mean every concept is different so there's no average time you know for a restaurant to breakeven but obviously the higher the revenues, the lower the cost the quicker you're going to start to make money and generate positive cash flow.

Thea:             So, say a Chef has all of that in place what do you think a reasonable timeframe would be from “I'm currently working at this restaurant but I have this great idea to welcome to my new restaurant”

Roger:           I would say that process at a minimum would be 10months to a year realistically; to transition out to have enough time to spend on you know market research and finding a space and figuring out the menu and starting to hire staff and doing renovations and buying equipment if you need equipment, it's probably at the at a minimum 10months to put all the pieces in place the grand opening.

Thea:             Got it! OK so now let's talk about someone who isn't a Chef in fact let's talk about someone who has no restaurant experience and I think there's still 2prongs to this, there's the person who has no restaurant experience but a great idea and no money.

And then there's the person who has no restaurant experience a great idea and some backing or access to money.

So, I think those are still two different things but if you are if you either have money or not whether you do or not and you have some killer idea probably, I'm guessing most of the time to meet your own needs for you see you know potential like you did when you know first move to a Ski town that didn't seem to have a nightlife I mean some people just recognize that there's an idea, they talk to all their friends everybody want to same thing it doesn't exist so OK we're going to do this.

What are some things that they should look at because now you're talking about someone who has no restaurant experience so obviously they don't know how to do these projections and they don't know the ins and outs of what it cost to run a restaurant but they all tell they're not a Chef, they don't even have the recipes or the you know the knowledge the Chef has, so where do they start?

Roger:           Well again, it comes down to being a student of your restaurant before you open the doors, before you commit a ton of money to this project, read a few books, I mean or go online I mean there's so much information out there I mean even the systems that we have on are comprehensive.

How to save time, how to save money, avoid all the headaches and really dig into what's most important in order to give your children you know yourself the best chances for success.

And then you need a real point of differentiation in the marketplace because let's face it; this is a really competitive business there's a thousand restaurants in any given city or more. What's going to make your restaurant stand out? and not only for the initial buzz when you first open but what's going to sustain you over the long haul that's going to keep customers coming in and happy and you know spreading your praises so that you've got a steady clientele and you're making money, all those things are important.

Thea:             And if you are just the investor, person and someone who's always wanted a restaurant you don't really want to be the one running the restaurant; maybe you have a concept that sort of thing, how do you from a numbers perspective, I mean how Where's the check and balance with that how do I know that the person I've hired to run the restaurant, The Chef, The General Manager or whatnot who has the experience is actually doing well by my money, I mean if I don't know anything about the restaurant business what are some red flags or what are some easy checks and balances for me to make sure that they're doing the right thing?

Roger:           Well I mean that comes down to having a system so that you as the investor understand how profitable this restaurant could be based on key questions you would ask the Chef. I would ask to see the Chef’s menu, the proposed menu and then all. Also it's as simple as asking him to cost out those dishes to show exactly what it cost to put that plate in front of the customer every single item, category by category and then what you plan on charging the customer for the ultimate price point that the customer pays for the dish and then you divide those two and it's going to give you a food cost percentage and it's also going to give you a profit per dish when you subtract what it costs you to put it out from what you're charging the customer.

I mean, I would do that as a minimum exercise for at least the key entrees that are going to generate the biggest source of revenue for the restaurant and that's going to tell you if the Chef understands you know menu costing and then we can go down the whole road of is this menu profitable or not because in a lot of the consulting that I do, I see that a lot of low profit items are the biggest sellers in restaurants and they're taking away sales from higher profit items and that's kind of the kiss of death you know because there can be a huge spread on an entrée you could be selling a lower profit item and losing a $6-$7 profit for what you could have been selling for some of those higher profit Adams and that's where their staff training comes in where you know the staff are so well educated about the menu they're suggesting what they know the customers are going to enjoy.

But also leading them into those more profitable items but I would dig deep and just redesign a menu so that everything contributed a similar profit and then you only have to worry about not having a waste problem or theft problem where as long as you're moving the merchandise you're making a similar profit on everything you sell and those are some pretty, pretty critical foundational steps to put into any restaurant menu.

Thea:             So what would be that minimum if I'm the investor and I say, “OK I want you to show me a profitable menu” what is the percentage to say every dish should be at least what percentage profitable?

Roger:           Well, you know a lot of newbies or a lot of restaurants confuse food cost with profit let me give you an example; everyone knows that you know Mexican food and Italian foods have traditionally low food cost so if you're selling pizza and pasta dishes your food cost is probably in the low to mid twenty's if you're selling steaks and sea foods and that sort of thing your food cost is upwards of 35%-40%.

And the industry has been ingrained to think that a low food cost is the way to go but a low food cost really comes from efficiency in the menu design and selling real a lot of high profit items that drive those costs down but here's the example I wanted to say, would you rather sell a pizza that you charge the customer say $12 for and you're making maybe a $4-$5 profit on that pizza even though it has a 22% food cost or would you rather sell a steak for $26 that costs you $7 to put on the plate and you can see a much higher profit is it $14-$15-$16 profit even though the food cost on that item is 35%-40%.

You put profit in the bank not food cost, so you need a balance between you know having a reasonable food cost but really focusing on profit and a lot of restaurants make that mistake.

Thea:             Well, that also has to have something to add value my right because obviously I can turn and burn pizzas in some places where you can't turn a brand steaks; so there you have to...

Roger:           It's all about balancing and that's now you're talking about the menu mix because I have always believed that a really successful menu strikes a balance between variety, appeal to the customer and profit and you need to hit all three to have a home run menu.

Thea:             And take up potential, if you're going to take out regular I think that can be a huge part of someone's business awesome you might have a clue or sit down eat in menu but you may be able to augment that if you have that kitchen capacity to like you could sell a ton of those higher profit stakes inside and tell a ton of pizzas to go or you know something similar to that.

Roger:           Where you only have so many seats in your restaurant so if you've got a rock and take out business it's like another profit center you know and you can't have too many profit centers. So, I totally support that go for a take-out business as well as a sit down restaurant; unless you're 5-star fine dining in and you don't see too many takeout you know places that are you know four seasons quality food but you get the idea.

Thea:             I think they can though especially if they package that if you can expect a 5-star meal in your hotel room and some people are tired or you're catering or you're having company or whatnot I think that there is a way to package that to again if your kitchen has more capacity than your dining room that's a great situation because you really can you know add on that and then you don't have you know you just have the host and the order taking sort of staff for that.

Roger:           Well, now you're talking about a whole another possibility because look at Wolfgang Puck's empire not only did he have successful high end 5-star dining restaurants but now he has a national retail business and supermarkets across the country you know PF Chang's and Wolfgang Pork I mean the possibilities are endless if you know we're talking about brand building right if you can prove build a really strong brand the potential is limitless.

Thea:             See, I love that, I just love the idea of thinking about the basics and how someone starts and where they go with it and what they have to take into consideration and why some restaurants are so successful and why some fail and close which is always so devastating I mean every time we see a restaurant that's failed, it breaks your heart because we know how much work it takes to go into it and you know that that was you know could have been there life savings, their dreams you know all of that so we hate to see that happen.

So, I think that's one of the reasons this sort of conversation is super helpful for people because if someone is listening and they do want to stay whether they're a Chef for an investor or just someone with a great idea, we don't want them to fail, so we want them to you know go in with these core concepts at least at a minimum that they've taken this sort of stuff into consideration.

Roger:           Well, I don't think we've really I mean-- those are all great concepts and ideas we haven't really touched on the staff training piece and how important that is.

Thea:             And whether they're going to be doing a quick serve, fast serve or have full service or for some restaurants, they have a combination of both you can eat and you can dine out. And certainly that the way the staff is trained for sure impacts the profits in the sales.

Roger:           Well the staff of the brand the cornerstone of the business but they're also brand ambassadors for the business and every single impression counts and often, every impression determines whether or not you're going to get that customer back again one and two is that customer going to talk about your place to their friends and recommend your business you know on the on line reviews in the social media and all that other stuff plus the word of mouth which I've always believed and still do is the most powerful cost effective form of advertising there is. Word of mouth will always be the biggest advantage if your staff or you know representing your brand well.

Thea:             And they're having fun; so you've done a ton of episodes on staff training and I know will do so many more because they're so popular but for today's episode instead of going into the intricacies of the staff training, why don't we just touch on this person who's starting a restaurant and needs to essentially hire staff.

I mean maybe they're bringing some from a restaurant they've worked at maybe they know people in the industry but what are some of the core criteria that you would recommend they look for in hiring someone? Is it all about how many years if you've been worked at a restaurant, like where do you start with that?

Roger:           I think a lot of restaurants go wrong and I talk about this all the time because you frequently no matter what the business is you're driving down the street anywhere USA and you see the ‘Help Wanted’ sign in the window of the business or you read the ‘Help Wanted’ ads and it's loaded with help line and I need this, I need that and that is not been a great way to hire because you get what you get and you don't know what you're going to get until that person starts working and it can be a disaster in so many areas.

Instead, I've never really hired for experience, I've always hired for their approach, their personality, their attitude and a true desire to serve the public whether they're front of house or back of house people and you know the propensity to be a team player and basing your business on teamwork and respect, leading by example and demonstrating what the culture of the restaurant is and just getting everyone to you know step up to that bar because ultimately, everyone impacts the guest experience whether they're Cook, a dishwasher, or Host, a server, a Boss or whatnot, Bartender.

Everyone impacts the ultimate experience that the guest has so we can train for experience but we can't train for the desire to serve, the teamwork, the personality and the attitude in approach those are the critical issues.

Thea:             And we've seen all of that, we've seen people that no matter how much training they got, they were just never going to be stellar and then we've seen people that just had amazing personalities and needed a little bit of training and when they got it, they got it.

Roger:           Now, you're talking about the B-team you know I've always had a philosophy that every business has As, Bs and Cs and you wish you had 10 A-players because whether they have experience or not they just get it but they're super, super personable and customers you know they make friends with their customers every night. And the Bs show that potential and promise they just need a little polish to be great. And the C-players are never going to assimilate the training they're only there for the wrong reasons collect a pay cheque and they really don't care about pleasing the guest and that's a morale killer.

So, I've always recommended you get rid of the Cs immediately you focus on developing your Bs and using your A-team players to train your Bs and then pretty soon all you have is an A-dream team staff and that's when you've got that, that's the magic formula right there.

Thea:             So, you're looking for personality I mean we just had a recent episode the other night we went out and we were meeting a friend for drinks who is in the area and it was awesome because the Bartender was phenomenal He was an A-team for sure.

And we were so excited to see our friend and it was just one of those like classic awesome nights out but then we end up getting transferred to a table because we wanted to have more of a dinner and then that server was not great at all and that was just such a buzzkill to our whole evening and the problem with that is that was the end and experience that was sort of the feeling we were left with correct when I cut compare and contrast that to the feeling of when we arrived again like we are a riot He's fantastic he takes her drink water we're catching up with our friend; like it was just so awesome. And then by the time we left, we were like-- like we were just so frustrated.

Roger:           And so is this human nature we're negative experiences unfortunately take over and dominate positive ones so you're talking about our first experience at the bar was true hospitality defined and I learned a long time ago that hospitality is present when something happens for you and we felt like we were special customers even though the bar was full, we got fantastic service we got recommendations, we had prompt you know whenever we needed another anything I mean it was right there they were on every single detail. We felt like we were special.

Thea: And it was effortless, he wasn't trying.

Roger:           No, no we were just being his approach was just right on; I mean it was clear that he enjoys being social and giving every customer just a great experience and he was just dynamic. And then we went to the table and then suddenly hospitality was absent because things started happening to us instead of for us and you can clearly see the difference and it was a little surprise because the approach right out of the gate was good, the person made us I ordered a gin and tonic and this particular establishment distills their own gin and tonic and this server recommended it and gave us some of the nuances of why I would enjoy it and I'm like wow we're going to be in for grass spirits here and then that was the last thing that happened.

He brought me the gin I enjoyed it but then you know disappeared for long periods of time, was not attentive and the place wasn't packed or busy and it was just his whole approach and then it ruined the whole beginning of our experience right to the end.

Thea:             Maybe he was a B-player because he did start out strong and he did seem quite personable and maybe he just got a bit in the weeds and unfortunately that can happen and I think it's just one of the things to keep in mind for sure when you talk about teamwork that sometimes other players on the team can save Yes staff members that get into the weeds and save the whole experience for everybody.

Roger:           Well, that's Cross training and we have you know our system sales stores is all about choreographing the service and communication between those three critical front of house people if you've got a full service restaurant; it's obviously the hostess staff that greet the customer it's the bus staff that you know clear the plates and set reset the tables and the servers that way and the tables in all three of those can give a very choreographed experience to every customer and busters can even make suggestions and bring drinks to the table and do increase the sales and help the server.

But it really is all about teamwork and backing each other up so that no one's in the weeds and that every guest gets a great experience and isn't felt like one of the herders forgotten which happened to us.

Thea:             Right! And that's for a full serve or fast casual I think it applies to either one right and in this instance truly I think one of the biggest gaps you know by the time we left the bar we were hungry and there was no 25minute wait before from him coming to introduce himself to actually taking our order. 

Had we had you know tickets to a play or anything like that it would have been significantly to lie I mean luckily we were in a relaxed nature but I think even if he had sent a host of us or someone over to the table to say, “Are you guys ready? Are you in a hurry?” you know something like that could have broken up that time period and made a difference just by asking a team member to jump in and help. So, well say well try him again and see how that plays out.

Roger:           So, yeah I mean you know it's always a good idea to try to give a restaurant a second chance and not just formulate that opinion saying I'm never going back there you know far too many customers do that because everyone has a bad night.

But it's just a word to the wise that you know every customer experience counts and every customer experience determines whether or not they come back again and that's really the bottom line. So, those details are critically important to your success.

Thea:             All right, well I think that probably is it for today right a sort of a wrap but another thing that I want to talk about on and there's just not enough time today is the restaurant that gets started so whether it's the Chef or the investor they get started and something's just not working they're not as profitable and whether they recognize that early I think there's a timing there that I'd love to talk about.

The timeline between when well when you know enough is enough and it's just not going to be successful and you're just losing money and you're just going to continue losing money and at what point can you step in and how drastically to turn around sort of a sinking ship?

Like you had a great idea, you started it maybe you didn't do your due diligence or maybe you misunderstood the restaurant cost or whatever it is. I think there's all these time periods in or in the lifespan of a restaurant where people can make changes; whether it's drastic because this is a sinking ship or whether it's just this is great and it can be even better but some people become complacent.

So, I'd love to chat more about that in one of the next episodes because I think that there's restaurant owners and managers in all parts of the restaurant lifespan out there and I think there's always it's always a journey it's an evolution and it's sort of a decision about whether to optimize whether to save the ship or whether just to let it go. And that timing can be crucial to someone's bank account and their quality of life to their staff to everything. So, I’ll love to chat about that sometime.

Roger:           That's what's so fascinating about this business; I mean we could literally sit here and talk about a thousand different topics that affect the thousand different types of restaurant concepts and that's what makes it exciting and fulfilling and that's why our work is so great that we really get to interact with a lot of these different restaurants all different places around the world and you know share knowledge and share experiences and it's really--- it's a business based on passion and if you're in it for the right reasons whether you're a Chef or a new operator, just make sure you're passionate about the business because when you're passionate you dig deep and you learn as much as you can and you really want to provide a great living for your staff, you want to create a great experience for your customer and then it's just a win-win and that's what the hospitality business is really all about.

Thea:             This is awesome, thanks for having me on, I love as you can tell I love sort of probing into why some restaurants make it and some go and why some make it and some knock it out of the park; it's always just really fascinating to me and that whether it's a restaurant we’re working with, whether it’s a restaurant we’ve been to, they're all so different. And it's just for me a huge study and intrigue. Hope we find out as well.

Roger:           That was a great episode, thanks for joining me Thea, thanks everyone for listening.


Thanks for listening to The Restaurant's Rockstars Podcast. For lots of great resources, head over to and while you're there, download a copy of the book, ‘Rock Your Restaurant’ it’s a game changer, See you next time!

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