You’ve been promoted (yea!) and your friends couldn’t be happier for you. And why not? Sharon was late again and Cody snapped at a guest… but hey, it happens. You’re an understanding kind of new restaurant manager.
Or maybe… you’ve been promoted (finally!) and you can’t wait to leave the losers behind. Now you have the chance to ship this place into shape. You’ve got a zero-tolerance policy and if they don’t like it, there’s the door. Maybe you’re more of a let-them-know-who’s-boss kind of new restaurant manager.
When you go from being “one of the gang” to being one of “them,” make your transition smoother by following this advice:
Lead by example. Don’t be late, don’t forget a meeting and don’t act inappropriately. If you make a mistake, admit it publicly and discuss how it negatively impacted the team.
Get real. Privately tell employees your goals for the operation and find out what goals they’re hoping to achieve. Brainstorm ways you can help each other.
Don’t let it slide. Say you walk past the prep line and notice an employee not using sanitizing solution. Instead of ignoring it, politely, but firmly, state the policy and help implement the change. If the problem keeps occurring, privately tell the employee your common position (“If customers become ill, we could all be out of jobs”) and state your view (“It’s my responsibility to make sure that doesn’t happen. Now, what can we do to…?”)
Above all, remember that leaders lead (no matter how uncomfortable it might be) and managers are only as good as the people they manage.