A food managers day is filled with all kinds of activities, big and small. We have to get food counts so we can get the food order in, we have to make sure the bartenders aren’t over serving customers alcohol and we have to make sure we get the shift covered for our chef whose wife just went into labor. All this while we have a full dinner shift running in the dining room. So how do we make sure we’re not missing anything? Notes!
Notes are a busy managers best friend. You can carry a pocket note pad or a big giant folder, you can use an electronic device or you can fold a piece of printer paper into quarters so it fits in your back pocket. Regardless of your method you need to be writing things down all day or you will forget stuff. First, you should write down all of the tasks you intend to complete that day ( i.e. orders or special cleaning duties). Also, you should be writing down observations throughout the shift. For example, you notice a server is late while you are in the kitchen taking temps on your service line. Or it seems like some meat has gone missing. If you don’t write it down immediately you will forget it happened. So, take a second to pull out your note pad and write it down. If you do this for everything that happens throughout your day you will have a pretty good record of all the happenings during your shift.
Now what good does this do if your not going to do something with the information or put it somewhere permanent. At the end of each day take ten minutes to go over this indecipherable set of scribble that only you can read so you can leave any relevant information to the next manager or even your self for the next shift in a shared daily manager book. I also would put performance information into a file for my staff members, this could be either on a computer or in filing cabinet. If you do this you’ll start create a record on your team members and find out if there are any positive or negative trends.