Many ingredients are needed to make your business successful: comfortable furniture, reliable kitchen equipment and great people. The persons you hire will affect your reputation (either in a good or bad way) so you better make sure you find the perfect fit.

WHERE do you find your employees? You can start with a printed ad in your shop and use word of mouth. You should also spread the word online: social media, and why not on your website if you have one. If you don’t, there are many websites allowing you to list your job ad and find the right candidate (Careerone, Seek, Sidekicker,…).

WHAT skills should you look for? Your employees will be the face of your business so you definitely want them to present well. You will also want them to be able to take an order right, to remain courteous at all times and be able to cope with difficult customers. For the rest, we all have different standards and expectations, so it will be up to you!

HOW to keep your employees motivated? They run your business – remember that! You should treat them well and value their work to push them to provide an excellent service. We highly recommend you implement incentives. Don’t be scared, it doesn’t have to be complicated, nor expensive. Be creative! Some ideas below.
- Tips (avoid pool tips where the slacker relies on the hard worker – not a good dynamic!)
- Free catering
- Movie tickets
- Bottles of wine
- Gift cards
- Holiday with pay on their birthdays
- Organize a Christmas party
- Select an employee of the month
- Do you serve wine in your restaurant? Organize sampling for your staff so they can learn in a fun way. They will be only better at selling it later on!

Friend and long-time customer Richard from the Oricco charcoal chicken restaurant provides extra advice. Be organized, as much as possible. Organize and communicate a roster so everyone knows when he or she is expected at work. Also, don’t hesitate to delegate tasks, employees feel trusted and motivated to outperform. Last but not least, make sure you have a pool of casuals you can call in case of last-minute change in your roster.

A big thank to Richard for his valuable input on this matter.