Learn the Business
You can spend a lifetime learning the bar business, many have.
The list of things is huge. Mixology, management, inventory, it all matters
and learning it is important for your career.
Something else is also important. What are other people that you work
with doing? How do there jobs effect your bottom line?
Once you have a good understanding of your responsibilities and
and are able to perform your work efficiently, it’s time to start learning
about the other jobs around you.
Why Should I Care?
The reason you should care about these other positions is simple.
They help you make money and you do the same for them.
When you learn what they’re supposed to be doing you will be able
to help them, help you.
For example, why is the bar back taking so long to get the glasses
washed? You need glassware, it’s busy, you have to do it, and people
have to wait for you to get it done.
That’s going to hurt his tip out at the end of the night. Should it?
Maybe he was struggling with a stubborn keg. Did a glass break
somewhere and not cleaning it right away could be a hazard?
Did someone that you over served puke in the bathroom?
He might just need better instructions on how to prioritize and move
more efficiently. In my experience this is usually the case.
If you actually worked that job before you would understand
and could help.
One Job At A Time.
Don’t try to understand every job at once.
Pick one and begin analyzing it. Watch the people
that are best at the position, and begin asking questions.
Find out why they do things in certain order Ask if they were
trained anywhere else. Ask what they think should be done
differently, to help improve their workflow.
When you think you have a good understanding of how the
job works, start helping whenever you can. If it isn’t beneath
your high status of bartender extraordinaire, ask the manager
if you can work a shift of the other job. If they ask why, and
they will, just tell them the truth. Your coming for their job.
Just kidding. You don’t want their job, you just want to be
able to do it.
Once you have a good understanding of these other jobs
you will notice a positive change when people are working
on your shift. The reason for this is because you get why
everyone is doing their thing and you will have an easier
time staying ahead of things when it gets busy. If someone
is in the weeds, don’t worry, you got it.
Take The Lead.
Now that you know how all of the pieces of business work together,
it’s time to help grow the business.
Customers love going to bars that have a staff that works well together.
Happy customers like spending and tipping for great service.
Although you aren’t the manager, people will start seeing as one.
When there is a lack of leadership your co-workers will look to you
for guidance. All because you understand the whole business and
decisions are easier for you to make.
You’ll also have an easier time understanding why management
makes some of its decisions. You can be a big part of helping
improve things for everyone.