How to Handle When a Manager Chooses to Move to a Different Restaurant

 In Bar & Restaurant Operations

You rely on managers for so many different things—they’re the people who keep your restaurant running! That’s why it can feel like such a kick in the gut if they decide to move on to another restaurant. Still, it’s inevitable that this will happen from time to time. You can’t always prevent it from happening, but you can take several smart steps when your restaurant manager chooses to take a job at another restaurant.

Conduct an exit interview.

This is extremely important, especially if you don’t know why your manager decided to quit. Are they unhappy working for you? Are there things they don’t like about your restaurant? Is there anything you can do to convince them to stay? If the manager points out any negative aspects of your business, be sure to investigate those further. You don’t want the problems at your restaurant to cause other employees to quit. However, you may find that your manager is quitting for reasons that have nothing to do with you or your restaurant.

Get them to leave their knowledge behind.

Your manager probably takes care of about a billion different jobs at your restaurant, and s/he might know things that no one else does. Don’t let that knowledge walk out the door! Make sure s/he types up a list detailing everything s/he does in a day, including any important passwords or phone numbers.

Have them train your new manager.

Whether you’re promoting from within your restaurant or bringing someone in from outside, your new manger needs some training. Your exiting manager likely gave you some notice, so use that time to train the new manager. Or, see if you can convince your exiting manager to come in sporadically after he leaves to help the new manager get the swing of things.

Evaluate your hiring process.

Was this manager just a poor fit for your restaurant? Think about how you hire your employees and consider if there’s anything you could do differently to find employees who are happy working for you.

Take the high road.

Remember, your manager is going to work for another restaurant—your competition. The last thing you want is for the manager of another restaurant to be angry with you. Wish the manager well at their new job and be as nice as possible before their last day.

Don’t forget that it’s just business.

It might sting, but don’t take it personally. A manager leaving isn’t necessarily a reflection on your restaurant. And if it does point to things you can change, consider it a great opportunity to make improvements.

It’s never fun when a manager decides to leave, but it isn’t the end of the world. Make sure to get all the information you can and use the experience as an opportunity to make changes and improvements at your restaurant. If you’re ready to start hiring a new bar or restaurant manager, read this article for a list of helpful tips!


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