Free Essay

Excellent Manager Manifesto

In: Business and Management

Submitted By jechoot1
Words 21957
Pages 88


By James E. Cornett III, with J. Philip Cornett
All Rights Reserved
Copyright 1998
Created: December 1996 Last Updated 11-04-10

This memo will highlight responsibilities for the Hooters Manager position. Many duties are for the position of General Manager. However, any "assistant" manager performing these duties well will progress and perform much better than one just merely going through the motions. This set of philosophies and operating policies was derived from the CMC-HOOTERS GENERAL MANAGER MANIFESTO.

There are many responsibilities that will be defined in terms of mechanical responsibilities.... But more important than that, and therefore things that I will list first, are philosophical and attitudinal responsibilities. Most managers can run a typical restaurant. But Hooters is not a typical concept or restaurant operation. It takes a special person to manage a Hooters and an even more special person to be a excellent manager of a Hooters Restaurant.

You have to run the restaurant like it's yours and the GM's to own and run, working as a team, and make yourself only settle for being the BEST in town. Nothing second rate. You must know that settling for mediocrity means death to the restaurant, any potential bonuses, and death to job security and career growth. That means always concerning yourself with the guest's perception of what's going on...what kind of service are they getting? Is it the best they've ever had and the best we know we can give? If you cannot honestly answer yes to both of those questions and you are not immediately hustling to achieve those goals, then you are not living up to what a Hooters Manager must do, and your longevity in that position will be limited. Running it like it's your own means not burying yourself in a position in the kitchen, in the office, or in dish. It means keeping the big picture...hopping on the line in sell position or in make up to jump start the orders and improve ticket times. Coaching and giving "atta boys" to the kitchen staff. Smiling when out on the floor, getting ice for the Hooters Girls at the bar, helping Hooters Girls on the floor bus their tables, coaching them to run bus tubs evenly instead of letting a few carry the whole burden. It means watching to see that Hooters Girls greet guests IMMEDIATELY when the guests enter the restaurant. It means you yourself walking up to open the door for guests and giving them a hearty "Hi, Welcome to Hooters!" and meaning it. Set the example of hustle and cheeriness. Possess and demonstrate a Positive Mental Attitude at all times. If things are bugging you, find a way to take ten deep breaths and get your Hooters game face back on and correct frame of mind. This is just to be a manager. Now, to be an excellent manager you must do the above, and then observe and communicate with your other managers to understand them, encourage them, and urge them all to pursue excellence, as well as coach and counsel the Hooters staff likewise so that consistent behavior occurs, and that behavior is of the correct nature. Excellent Managers must rid themselves of moodiness. It will prevent them from being truly effective leaders. Morale at the restaurant starts at the top. GMs set the example by doing it him or herself. An Excellent Manager will not let an ineffective GM affect his or her mood or hustle. An Effective Manager will confront the GM with any misunderstandings and work to follow the GM's logic as long as the logic is synchronized with CMC policies and the excellent managers' own experiences and opinions. Hustle in everything you do and stay organized. Have a logical purpose for your actions, and keep your ego in check. It is your job as the manager to tweak the staff, and continue to increasing the number of highly motivated and correct Hooters performing people and eliminate the slack morale and under-performing employees. This should be done on a continual basis, in a fair, firm, and positive manner, free from vindictiveness or spite.

It is difficult to constantly coach and reinforce the proper standards when employees resist doing that (having good server and kitchen skills) and still remain in a positive frame of mind. But doing that is a key to success.

The Excellent Manager should stay above all gossip in the store and act based on facts he has observed or can prove. He should never recount one Hooters Girl’s story to another. He should never be afraid to be straight up with an employee, in person. Don't manage over the phone. And stay out of the office as much as possible. Be on a constant observation tour to make sure the Hooters experience is happening....Are our guests getting correct attention? Is the kitchen performing properly? Are the lights and music right? Not too dark or too quiet? The atmosphere is supposed to be active...not overly cozy.

An Excellent Manager must respect policies that are set forth with the best interests of the restaurant's success at heart....such as how we treat our employees and our guests. Employee scheduling must be prompt, neat, organized, responsible...staffing enough employees to handle the business and also staffing thinly enough to maintain profitability. It means reinforcing with every manager the importance of covering call offs and continuing to recruit and train to build depth so you can have the leverage to enforce policies and keep the most motivated and properly performing staff...front of house and back of house.

The Hooters Manager must remember that this business is a living organism, the restaurant business. The Excellent Manager must always be checking its pulse and constantly improving its conditioning and longevity and performance. The Excellent Manager must know his numbers and should be familiar enough with his DOC that he can accurately predict what his Profit and Loss statements will look like. And this is not from gut feeling. This knowledge comes from putting his or her hands on the information...the DOC, the invoices, the distributor bids, from analyzing and forecasting the P&L, from detailing problem accounts with declining budgets, from being on top of every Flat Fee Promo Pay Sheet. The Excellent Manager should know off the top of his or her head what normally recurring costs are for controllable expenses, like linen, or pest control, or trash removal, or small wares. He or She should always be reviewing the numbers for reasonableness, investigating any anomalies until the reason is discovered and corrective measures are designed, explained, put in place, and proven to correct the anomaly. This is how the Excellent Manager makes real money. Our philosophy is to pay managers a base salary competitive enough to afford a place to live, a car to drive, normal stuff. To be able to have the perks in life, like to actually own a home and be able to afford the down payment, to take nice vacations, buy nicer cars, etc., bonus income is usually required. To do that, a true Excellent Manager gets results and pushes for maximum performance from him or herself, and from his or her staff.

The following behaviors are those of effective Managers. There are many, and they are all important. It does not take the under-performance of many of these areas combined to bring a restaurant down. But proper and thorough execution of ALL of these behaviors virtually guarantees success.

The mood and atmosphere at Hooters follows the mood swings of the Manager. And there shouldn't be any. The Excellent Manager should not let Hooters atmosphere or his or her mood be blown about or knocked off balance by the slightest breeze or by every little event that impacts him or her or the restaurant. He or she should remember that cheeriness, a sense of purpose and fun, and fairness in coaching, and encouraging and monitoring of employees is ALWAYS required, no matter what may be affecting the Manager's life. The restaurant lives every day, and all guests expect the supreme Hooters experience. It is the Excellent Manager's duty and responsibility to help deliver that experience.

With personnel it is important that you are respected as firm, fair, interested, and understanding. You should be personable. There is a fine line between being fair and firm and being a rear end. There is also a fine line between being cordial and friendly and actually becoming friends. Your best friend, when working, should be the best interests of the restaurant. Do your best to keep friendships outside of the restaurant. Your upbeat, positive mood should transfer to other assistant managers, to the Hooters Girls, the Kitchen Staff, and even up to your GM. Be a coach, and never be afraid to look for or ask for the correct answer if you don't know it to tell someone else. But never let "not knowing" be good enough. It is your responsibility to learn the correct procedures and be better than every other employee at it, and then teach them how to be better than you.

Always continue hiring and reviewing employees. MAKE SURE you constantly hire the most excellent looking Hooters Girl staff. These are commonly referred to as "9's & 10's". This is imperative to the success of the concept. Make sure all Hooters Girls are bubbly in personality. I highly recommend making them greet you at the door a time or two in your interview just to see how perky and game-oriented they are. If they won't do this, then they probably won't sing or greet your guest for real either. This practice also begins setting the standard for the behavior you desire right up front, first thing. See Hooters Atmosphere....

All employees are entitled to performance reviews. Everyone needs to know what they are doing well and what areas they need improvement on. The Excellent Manager focuses on specific behaviors when coaching or reviewing an employee, with specific instance examples to reinforce the assertion so that the employee can relate.

Orientations must be done on a regular basis. The current policy is to have them at a minimum every Saturday at either 8:00 a.m. or 8:30 a.m. (your teams’ decision) and make sure every manager is properly trained on doing orientations. It is very important for the orientation manager to be prepared, upbeat, and professional. Look sharp, speak clearly, smell good. Have good breath. The little stuff counts. You are setting the standard by which your Hooters Girls and Kitchen Staff will live. You can't enforce it on them if you aren't that way 100% of the time. (Just think of your bad habits....and then think what shape the restaurant would be in if every employee exhibited that habit MOST of the time....) Never show indifference. You should take steps to resolve whatever is causing your ambivalence or indifference. Don’t keep it in, because it will show, no matter how you try to suppress it. Try to have fun, and make sure to help create a fun atmosphere. The Excellent Manager must take the initiative to make fun things happen and open up the staff for suggestions on what they would like to see happen that is fun, and then make sure to take notes and pass these ideas on to the General Manager and other managers. At orientation, set the goals for Sales and Profitability. Let your employees know what our main missions are: Guest Satisfaction, Great Sales & Profits, Employee Satisfaction, Living Up to Hooters' Potential, and FUN!

While the GM is the ultimate keeper of the training system, it is every manager's responsibility to make sure that the system is enforced every shift, every day. You should know who your certified trainers are (write it down) and make sure they are in good standing. Make sure your kitchen trainers look and act like trainers. The same applies for Hooters Girls. Make sure they understand and are using the training system complete with OJT cards, the Evaluation of OJT Performance sheets, and the Employee Training Tracking Sheets. You must specifically inspect to make sure trainers are using the OJT cards and the Evaluations of OJT Performance. If you are not periodically spot-checking this and assuming that is being properly done, you are kidding yourself, and the training system, and your employee's performances, will break down. Use one-on-one counseling with your trainers if they need some re-direction. Praise your trainers often for following the system and producing good trainees. For all of your employees, praise often in public for identifiable reasons; that is, for following specs, good cleaning, high sales, etc. Don't play favorites.

The most Excellent Managers within our company are worth their weight in gold, because they are the trainers of tomorrow’s managers. Because of the turnover which occurs in the restaurant industry, we see new trainees from time to time. These employees are from all walks of life, with all different backgrounds; and every one of us has particular idiosyncrasies. No matter how unique a person may appear to be, treatment and communications with all of our employees must remain at a professional level and respectful level at all times. At no time would an Excellent Manager allow or condone or use nicknames, or slang names or pet names with a new or existing employee, without first finding out from that employee if that name was given to that employee in some other environment or previous life, and if this name is customary for this person--- or, conversely, that this name might have been created within a clique of the Excellent Manager’s own restaurant, or one of our other restaurants that the employee or MIT had worked in. Just like gossip, “the snake that bites everyone, and so vile that even it’s name hisses,” nicknames, or any kind of hazing or cliquish treatment for our employees, are exclusive, belittling, and could be demeaning, and certainly could undermine the spirit or effectiveness of our employees. As many worthwhile matters the Excellent Manager must concern him or herself with, having drama arise because of the stress nicknames or unprofessional conduct on his or her floor or in the kitchen is not the way this managers allows his restaurant to run.

All managers need periodic reviews in order for the restaurant and it’s employees to be successful. Set priorities for yourself as well as the ones you and your General Manager set for you. Have goals that are daily, and make some weekly, some monthly, and some quarterly or annually. Make your goals concise, and develop intermediate steps, time frames, and objective measures for your goals. Then, follow up with your goals and assess your progress, or re-focus or change direction if you are unsuccessful. Thereby, you are reviewing yourself! Hourly employees should receive regular written reviews and pay should be linked to documented performance.

You should always attend and take seriously the regular management meetings and contribute meaningfully to discussions of the restaurant and concrete measurable things, like sales, costs, personnel, repairs, promotions, etc. Management meetings are also time to give the GM input and receive input yourself. Memos from Richmond / HQ should be reviewed at these meetings and also projects assigned and followed up on. The meetings should not always monopolize the same person's day off. The day of week when these meetings are held should rotate so each manager only has to come in their day off once every three weeks. Make sure on the meeting day it is either in the morning, or that you can afford to have a shift manager or super employee cover the restaurant during the hour of your meeting.

Promotions are key to Hooters' success. Winging on weekdays (the current policy is 2 days per week, 5 places each of the two days, equaling 10 winging destinations per week) is mandatory. This cannot be allowed to slip if the restaurant is to achieve maximum success. If you are working with a promotions supervisor/manager, this should be a cooperative effort with the goal of boosting the restaurant's sales and reputation being a common one. A set agenda and game plan should be followed. You should review the Promotions Management Books and lists and make a checklist. A promotional calendar of 90 days in advance should always be in effect. Every month you must sit down to plan what is happening three months away and update the status of the events that are to occur sooner. Are we winging? Is the winging log being completed correctly and faxed to the office as it is supposed to be? Are we doing Office Parties, Sending out the Fish Bowl Letters, have Trivia, other games (Outbursts, Wingo,)? How about new stuff?. We can always try it. If it doesn't work, we'll know. Do we have flyers, catering menus (with definite calculated costs and quantities figured out beforehand), maps, Hooters Bucks if necessary...Keep a promotions file current so we don't re-create the wheel and we can have a learning curve. Also, keeping a good file will make it easier to give other Hooters information of successful promotions.

The method of managing promotions, which has been successful for other Hooters franchises, is the “two promo girl per store” program. These two girls together knock out a 10 item duty list each 4 week accounting period. This list pertains to winging, fish bowl letters, recruiting, marketing displays, special promotions support, and the like. For completing the list, the team gets $300. ($150 each). In addition a specific program of rewards has been devised for the promo girls which provides an additional reward for every month that they stay on in the promo girl position.

Effective Scheduling is another of Hooters key elements for success. We must maintain depth of staff to maintain flexibility so Hooters Girls and Kitchen Staff do not get burnt out. Like fresh horses in a race.... We should always be looking for Hostesses and T-shirt girls that will be tomorrow's Hooters Girls. Whenever you're out and see some 17 year old babe, recruit them for that. Use money and schedule flexibility and fun as the main draws. Always schedule enough to cover the floor. The front of the house is not where labor is refined. That's why we're hands on managers. Cut the kitchen first not the floor. Remember a maximum span of table coverage is 5 tables per girl, not 6. Doesn't matter if its a trainer or whatever. In the kitchen, don't allow front loading (a.m.) of labor, they can always stay in the afternoon to finish prep. But if you're labor is over 20% after lunch rush, that means you had too much scheduled. Bring them in later. Keep their noses to the business in the morning and push for production efficiency. Do not tolerate the morning “coffee klatches” or have jump-start turn into a morning coffee chat and smoke break. As for great labor performers (those who are highly productive and helpful) let's recognize and reward those who help us. Doing trade deals with movie houses, car washes, etc. provides for inexpensive rewards. I prefer that you stay away from restaurant trades. And the criteria for reward must be measurable. Like on-time performance, high sales, perfect uniform, etc.

At Hooters, Hooters Girls historically get burned out after several months or years, depending on the person. Hooters depends on a constant stream of motivated, energetic newly hired talent and a correctly working training system to maintain the vitality of the concept. Like the NFL, our system is a "what have you done for me lately?" system. If veterans lose their zip, or cease their will to be prom ready every shift, they should be counseled and, if not immediately correcting the slackened behavior, they should be eliminated to make room for the hungrier, more motivated new-hires. Don't let work friendships cloud your judgment.

Being an excellent Hooters Manager means having the respect of the entire staff and being above the temptation to develop deep friendships because you spend so much time in the restaurant. Successful Managers develop relationships OUTSIDE of the work environment so that they can avoid judgments based on personal feelings instead of objective observation. A Manager's ability to lead is compromised if he or she is a drinking buddy of an employee or other manager. This behavior is in fact addressed in the Cornett Management Company Management Policy, specifically under fraternization. An Excellent Manager does not need management policies to direct his or her personal life. A good Manager is mature enough to make the correct decisions and to foresee the potential for problems of indiscreet judgment or decisions made when friendship concerns override the best interests of the restaurant. An Excellent Manager realizes that his or her mission is to look out for the best interests of the restaurant.

Another promise from Cornett Hospitality to all of its employees in Hooters and Topekas operations is that we realize that they have a life. And while we require a lot of time to take care of business, at least you should have your schedule well in advance so you can plan when you DO have free time. Thus, schedules are required to be posted by Wednesday Night 6 p.m. prior to the week for which they go into effect. The printed schedules should be placed under glass or put in sheet protectors. The current week should be neatly aligned under "Current Week" on the bulletin board, and the next week's schedules, for front and back of house, should be neatly aligned under "Next Week" This should not slide. It is imperative that New Hire Paperwork is complete, which will capture the emailing and/or texting to cell phone information necessary for the NetPOS system to work. An Excellent Manager will NOT ALLOW this information to only be entered in minimal fashion to enable a paycheck to be generated, but not going “full circle” and getting all the key communication information into Net POS. An added benefit is that this work can be done at home…so there is really no excuse for it NOT getting done. GMs may have a thousand things to do. But a Hooters employee's schedule is of critical importance to them. It must be up on time. It is our promise to them. Our two most important assets are our guests and our employees. If we don't take care of our employees, they won't take care of our guests.

It is Cornett Hospitality and Hooters of America policy not to allow party notices on the company's bulletin boards. These can be misconstrued as a sanctioning or tacit reinforcement of those functions for which we have no control and might carry potential liability. It is the Manager's responsibility to keep non-business material off of company bulletin boards. Anything in question should be brought to the attention of the GM.

Comment Cards should never be viewed as a personal insult, when negative. However, they should be taken very seriously. Good comment cards create the opportunity for some public displays of appreciation and recognition, like posting on the bulletin board in the break room, highlighting the Hooters' Girls' name, and the positive comments. Negative ones should be handled immediately. Immediately call the customer, find out all the details of the bad incident, apologize profusely, promise to fix the problem, and invite them to return. Furthermore, write them (immediately) an apology letter and send them a coupon for a major discount off of their next visit. Invite them to ask for the manager so the manager can double check the correctness of their follow up visit. Copy the letter to the other managers and the Hooters Girls and Kitchen Staff that were involved with the original bad incident. Copy it to their employee files. If disciplinary action is warranted, document that also using the correct form and coach the employee effectively. Get their side of the story and a commitment to learn from it and perform properly in the future (or else...) Don't make the mistake of assuming the incident was isolated, or conversely, happens all of the time. Recognize that a problem exists. The degree of that problem depends on your investigation.

It appears the most effective way for us to record promotion events and make sure the people who are on them get paid is through the Flat Fee Promo Pay Sheet, turned in manually. Of course, if people clock in under promo, our labor is skewed for the day. However, promo pay sent in via a Flat Fee Sheet should be DOCed. And the other main point is that the flat fee sheets should be completed one sheet for each event. Do not list multiple events or dates on one sheet. Make sure all information is clear on these. Employee first and last names, employee number, pay required, and what store this promotion is charged to. This should be completed and faxed in the same day the promotion occurs. Include the hard copy in the mail to the office with the DSR.

New Hire Orientation was covered previously, but here I must stress the importance of complete and correct filling out of all documents in the New Hire Paperwork, and on a timely basis. This information then should be keyed into the NetPOS system and then mailed promptly to CMC Headquarters in Richmond. If and when you receive paperwork back from headquarters requiring more or corrected information (it is usually highlighted) this should be immediately done. What each GM must realize is the CMC runs a relatively low overhead operation. Two individuals are responsible for running payroll for all of our Hooters and Topeka’s This is efficient as long as the restaurants are doing their jobs correctly with paperwork completion and regularly occurring updating of NetPOS. But it depends right now on cooperation by the managers in the form of making sure the paperwork is complete and correct.

There is a huge financial impact and far-reaching inefficiency of not having the NetPOS (or whatever type of Point of Sale System we might be on) system files 100% up to date all of the time. The Excellent Manager can assist the GM in achieving 110% compliance here. This relates to personnel files, and also to menu files. The Excellent Manager communicates with NetPOS by email for and follows proper protocol by going through his or her GM and then the Regional Manager to get updates and changes approved and made.. When menu files are not current, either the wrong prices or keeping out-of-date specials on the menus, or not keeping the menus uniform and alphabetically sorted, profits are lost from misstated sales, confused and inefficient Hooters Girls and harder longer training, increase number of phone calls to and from headquarters to get the correct information, etc. Furthermore, the ability to alter the bottom of the guest check gives the GM another great tool in marketing and promoting the restaurant. The Excellent Manager makes sure he/she know how to change this, and changes it very often. The food and beer menus should be cleaned up every accounting period. Old specials or beers should be promptly taken off the menu.

The Excellent Manager knows correct product cost and invoice expense cost account numbers, and takes care to post them to the correct account on his or her DOC. Therefore, his restaurant has very few Memo Changes from the office due to restaurant error. And when he or she does get Memo Changes, usually from bills sent directly to the office, his or her DOC is immediately updated with the new information, and is put in the proper day on the proper week’s DOC. His or Her monthly DOC is also updated. The end result of this is that the Excellent Manager has a DOC at the store level which is almost identical the Income and Expense Statement (P&L) which comes off from the office. The Excellent Manager’s DOC vs. P&L variance is in the tens of dollars, not the hundreds or thousands.

This is another very important trait of a successful Manager. In a phrase, talk is cheap. And you don't have legs to stand on if your coaching is not in writing. A month from now what was said will be converted into "he said, she said" and not enforceable or defensible. To correctly guide and train employees you must be able to reference previous discussions by showing them evidence of the discussion and refreshing their memory. In the case that you must take more severe disciplinary action, you can then show that the particular employee hanged him or herself, and it is NOT the arbitrary opinion of the Manager. Also, coaching and counseling must be from the perspective of their behavior in relation the proper behavior or specification. Again this is not the GM or a Manager's opinion, but the specs in black and white. Objective, not subjective is the right way. So, the managers, and the GM, must know the specs cold. Be fair, constructive, and firm. And smile and be cordial while doing coaching and counseling. End on a positive note while making sure you got your point across and received a commitment to perform correctly. You won’t get this if you are stressing out on an employee, are indifferent or squeamish. While you may be angry inside, the more effective style would probably be to show and voice disappointment instead of anger. When they fall short let them know that you are sorry they are not performing to specification, and that you as Hooters Manager are charged with running the operation according to specification 110% of the time. Just the same, you can document your praise in the case of exceptionally good performance. You should be known for being one who praises, just as much being one who counsels. Be fair and comprehensive, not nit-picky. And stick with it---consistency is key. All counseling should be recorded on the CMC Employee Counseling Report, even if the counseling only the written recording of a verbal conversation type of counseling. This four part form allows for one copy to be given to the employee, one copy to go to headquarters, and two copies to remain at the store, with one going in that employee’s file and one going into the store counseling master file.

All applicants should have their applications place in a notebook (3 ring variety).
The applicant's information should also be entered on the Applicant Flow Log. This also is mandatory as this is our EEOC compliance procedure. We are VERY at risk if this falls out of compliance, especially with the Gender Neutral EEOC litigation settlement. In addition, PICTURES MUST BE TAKEN of hired Hooters Girls, either at hiring time, or at Orientation. (If at Orientation they must be instructed to be “made up” as well as they were when you hired them). This picture gets stapled to their application. You will always be able to have this and use this to prove that she had “the look” of a Hooters Girl (that all-American, surfer girl next door, cheerleader/model appearance) when she came on board, and that we recognized that this appearance was necessary for her to be hired and for her to remain in good-standing and to remain employed as a Hooters Girl.

This is another useful form that should be currently used at all restaurants. It is the GM's duty to make sure all managers are using it faithfully and consistently. The Excellent Manager realizes why this is so important. It is our defense against charges of arbitrary and/or inconsistent management. And with that duty comes the responsibility of enforcing the three-strikes you're out rule. (within six months). 1st strike write up, 2nd strike suspension, 3rd strike within six months, termination. Employees can provide an allowable excuse in the form of proper proof like a doctor's excuse, etc. However, if the next area is performed correctly, then there is no reason that fair consistent enforcements when called for cannot be carried out. The GM can more effectively do his or her job when each Excellent Hooters Manager routinely and consistently maintains and enforces this system. An additional tool which lets the “system” be the “bad cop” instead of making the manager be enforcer all of the time, is if the management team mounts the employee schedules up on the wall, with 28 columns beside the names. If an employee is written up for NS/NC or lateness, in addition to getting the disciplinary action form, a tick mark is placed on the 4 week calendar. After not too long, chronic offenders become quite obvious, and their behavior often changes as they are exposed on the chart on the wall, the NS/NC Wall of Shame... This can be updated every few weeks since turnover will occur, naturally.

At Hooters, it is the Manager's responsibility to keep it heavily staffed with quality Hooters Girls and Kitchen Staff in order to maintain scheduling flexibility. The other main reason is so that each Excellent Manager can enforce policies and, when necessary, rid our staff of people who do not comply with the rules/policies or perform consistently according to specification. By increasing and correctly training and having the respect of the staff, both Hooters Girls and Kitchen Staff, the Management can have the natural turnover that should occur. He or she should always know his best five or ten employees and be constantly hiring and training to increase the number of employees in their molds (of the good employees) and to be ridding him or herself of the worst five employees that he or she could also readily name, based on documentation of previous poor performance (not opinion). Frequent observation and communication with the GM will make sure all managers are aware of as many observations of each employee's performance as possible. Excellent Managers avoid the situation where each manager is unaware of problem employees (one manager thinks they are wonderful while the other has witnessed poor performance...)

One of the best indicators of the value of a Hooters General Manager to his or her company, is his or her ability to hire, train, and develop employees that grow into candidates for supervisory positions. The excellent manager is always pushing his or her employees to their best performance, and attempting to educate and create a career path for the best performers. The best managers get better from always being in the teaching mode, for the more they themselves preach it to promising employees, the more the Excellent Managers reinforce themselves. The Excellent General Manager always builds depth so that he or she is never "stuck" if a manager or employee suddenly leaves without notice. The Excellent Manager has healthy competition within his or her restaurant for the next available management or supervisor slot.

It is VERY important that the Hooters in CMC's markets adhere to Hooters Uniform policies and look as good as or better than Hooters anywhere else. Girls must always look camera ready. Kitchen must always be crisp and clean, as well as clean shaven and earring free. Hooters uniform policies contained in the Employee Handbook and in the Hooters Girl and Kitchen Staff job descriptions should be precisely adhered to.

For Hooters Girls, all of our Hooters lack consistency of management firmness in enforcing uniform policy. Shirts are not allowed to be baggy. The current policy is that the shirts be tucked into the shorts so that the tank top fits snugly. No visible tattoos should be uncovered. They should be covered with makeup not Band-Aids. Tongue rings are not allowed. Navel rings must be covered by the tucked in shirt. Only two earrings are allowed per ear, lower ear lobe only No bracelets or necklaces are permitted. The Excellent Manager must look for and enforce this every shift. It is very important. Very white tennis shoes. The Management team should make sure that Soft Scrub with Bleach and Tennis Shoe White are kept in stock. Write ups should be used if girls are constantly made to clean their shoes or correct their uniform. Nametags MUST be worn. Not an option. If an employee forgets her nametag, she can be loaned one IN EXCHANGE FOR COLLATERAL WHICH CAN BE RETURNED AT THE END OF THE SHIFT (like car keys). Names must be the real name, not nicknames, unless it's their permanent real nickname, like Kitten. Nothing obscene or perverse. Furthermore, the Excellent Managers help the Hooters Girls understand the virtue of upholding the image of a clean, uniform look. By letting individuals become deviant, the manager is damaging his or her restaurant and the concept. He or she should care more about the concept and his or her restaurant than that one employee’s reaction to being required to look how she was told she was going to have to look at orientation and during classroom training. The Excellent Managers are unified in this enforcement, with no “weak links” in the “armor”.

Just like for the front of the house, the good Manager has enough backbone to notice and enforce proper kitchen appearances. This means NEVER allowing beards or 5 o'clock shadow beards on the line. Goutees are allowed only as long as they are neat in appearance and do not exceed ¼” in length from the chin. Goutees are NOT allowed to run up the jaw line and connect to side burns. This would actually be a beard (chin strap!). Further, all kitchen staff with hair at shoulder length or longer must have it restrained by tying it back into a pony tail and then tucking that pony tail underneath a Hooters hat. No exceptions. No kitchen employees are allowed to wear any earrings. They, along with beards, harbor bacteria, and also parts may end up in the food. Strict adherence must happen. . The Excellent Manager has no problem with this policy, because he or she knows that “50% of the Meal is Eye Appeal!” This knowledge enables the Excellent Manager to remind kitchen employees to keep their area neat as well as their uniform. The kitchen staffers must be wearing Hooters shirts and Hooters hats. No exceptions. If their aprons become extremely messy, furnish them with a clean one.

No Hooters restaurants are easy to keep clean. It takes every manager every shift following up on the day or night's crew to make sure they did a good job cleaning. The Excellent Manager sees it through a customer's eyes. Manage this by doing a daily walk-around (360) with the specific purpose to see if the restaurant is clean--inside and outside. The entry foyer, landings, railings. On the inside the walls, chair legs, table posts, kitchen walls, equipment, ceilings. The equipment must shine. Customers see the hand-dirt on the half walls, the grunge along the baseboards, the marred chairlegs, the dingy Hooters wall behind the cook line and dirty equipment. The Excellent Manager keeps in effect a regular cleaning program so the front of the house is routinely cleaned with TSP or deck scrubbing solution, and that the kitchen is constantly cleaned. The FRP (Fiberglas Reinforced Plastic) Vinyl wall covering is meant to be cleaned. It should never be left splattered. Doorways in the front and back of the house, especially the kitchen one going from the line back into prep should be spotless and scuffmark-less. The front and back entry ways should look immaculate. Follow the customer's line of sight. The place should be dust-free also, and this must be done several times per week. The TVs the pendulum light shades, the HVAC ductwork, including air intake ducts. Detail cleaning must be done on equipment like refrigerator boxes and underneath fryers where dingy grease can build up. This affects long term maintenance costs also.

Another area of cleanliness regards food safety and compliance with health regulations. The break room should be clean. Unclaimed clothes should be out of there. The walkin coolers and freezers must be detail cleaned periodically. On a regular basis, like every week, the walk-ins should have the shelves pulled away from the walls and the walls and floors scrubbed. Our entry way and rear entry way walkways must be scrubbed a few times per year also.

A best method which has been identified by the leading restaurants in our company elevates the standard regarding silverware. Instead of solely relying on pre-soak and the dishwasher to clean steak knives, forks and spoons, the practice implemented in Spring o 2008 is to have Hooters Girls manually wipe down silverware after jumpstart, both AM and PM shifts. This should done using a clean wet cloth towel, prior to using that same towel for wiping tables and putting in sanitizing solution during the shift. This task is usually assigned to two or three Hooters Girls after each jumpstart, while the other Hooters Girls on that shift perform their other pre-opening or pre-shift duties, like stocking wait stations, etc. Knives and tables must be clean and sanitary. Clean silverware must really be clean, not just sorta clean and spotty

The bathrooms are a KEY area. Almost every Hooters customer visits our restrooms. They need to be spruced up and be made more entertaining than they are right now. But a good Manager does not rely blindly on Swisher or Pestco or some other service company. The managers must ensure daily mopping and periodical hosing down and disinfecting.
Towel and toilet paper dispensers should never run out of paper. The soap dispensers must always be operational. The cork boards for the newspapers should be in every stall. All ceramic walls, FRP walls, and partitions should be sealed with silicone, so that there are no holes from previous corkboards, soap dispensers, towel dispenser, whatever.
Partitions should be secure against the walls. The partition walls should always be graffiti-free. The Excellent Manager never walks into his or her own bathroom and thinks "yuk" without immediately remedying the situation.

With reasonable care, a well constructed restaurant should last through the term of its franchise agreement (twenty years.) Sometimes we accidentally employ some of most destructive kitchen staff who, if allowed to, can take their toll on the restaurant and our equipment. Good Managers do not let this happen. They make examples of people who abuse or break our equipment. These Kitchen Dudes can be “cool” without being destructive. Excellent Managers will only tolerate “cool” but never tolerate destructive.

There are several pieces of equipment that average managers tolerate an average level of cleanliness with. The government enacted HAACP and Serve Safe standards, and every state has tightened food safety standard which behoove the Excellent Manager to understand and formally pass the states tests to prove compliance regarding. There are standards which an Excellent Manager, as a hospitality professional, would meet anyway. He or she ensures that “sani-solution” (3 tbl Bleach to 1 Gal. Water) is always used for cleaning, is present on the cook line (on the bottom shelf of the sell tables, and also at each wait station and the bar). He or she also ensures that sanitation test strips are present and used regularly to comply with all health department requirements. The Excellent Manager makes sure the small wares are clean, and the clean wares rack is not splashed up on with the hose at night, throwing floor dirty water up onto the cleaned wares. He has aided in this by double checking anyone who is washing dishes to make sure they know the meaning of “pre-rinse” and “full load”. The Excellent Manager makes sure his or her hood vents are clean, the back bar wall and the FRP walls in makeup are clean, along with the Hooters tile behind the cook line. (Oxyclean works very well at getting grout clean. Plus there are products that you can use to whiten grout, almost like painting over it) The Excellent Manager notices the yellow dinge on the wing fryers, and makes sure that it is scrubbed off nightly with steel wool. The Excellent Manager has his or her kitchen staff trained such that they do floor sweeps, wipe down the line, and re-stock on a continual basis, instead of looking for the first chance to clock out for a smoke break or retreating to the corner of the bar to pause on a stool and chat with friends or guests. The Manager sets this in motion by being this way himself or herself. He or she may even trade permission for a smoke break for a line sweep, equipment wipe down, and a song--like “Motivated, motivated…..down right motivated!......” The Excellent Manager realizes the guests need their food, and need it in less than 12 minutes much worse than any kitchen staff could ever need a cigarette, and is unsympathetic to those who need a smoke during lunch rush or a sudden busy hit. Customers and Cleaning come first.

If you wait until you have an inspection coming to do cleaning, you're waiting too long, because your guests inspect you every day. Make sure cleaning schedules exist and are used. Make people/managers stay until those duties are completed or your restaurant will slip into grunge. Don’t procrastinate on detail cleaning. It should be a continuous, ongoing, consistent program.

When things fall into disrepair, don't procrastinate and don't always jump to calling in paid help. A good Manager is a bit of a handyman and can perform routine ordering parts and repairing the glass washer. This just requires initiative and commitment to keeping the ship upright and in proper form. Make sure that if an employee breaks something, you try your best to show them how to fix it and make them do it. Proper cleaning prevents a lot of breakage, especially with fryers. When compressor covers come off, make sure they are immediately put back on, and this time with more secure fastenings.

The Excellent Manager does not wait for a health or Hooters inspection to tell him or her where we need thermometers. The Excellent Manager has taken it upon his or herself to become certified as a food service manager and knows and preaches and coaches proper food handling procedures, safe temperature zones with thermometers to prove it, proper methods for thawing, prepping, and storing food, as well as for cleaning and sanitation.

An Excellent Manager does a walk-around EVERY DAY and replaces burned out Christmas Light bulbs and pendulum light bulbs. On the building exterior, burned out bulbs should be replaced quickly. As noted previously, burned out bulbs gives the guests the impression that we're not doing well enough to replace our burn outs (so they wonder what the food's like and if we're cutting corners there too...) So it's very important to adopt a sixth sense to automatically scan and notice atmosphere things, like burned out bulbs. AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT IMMEDIATELY…Don't walk by it and do nothing.

As we mentioned above, dustiness is not good. And with as much activity that goes on in Hooters dust accumulates quickly. TV screens, lamp shades, and HVAC ductwork (especially intake grilles) must be dusted frequently.

Every day and several times during the day, the good Manager checks out his or her windows and doors to make sure they are smudge and fingerprint and mud free, and indeed are sparkling. Very important sign of cleanliness. Make sure there is no tape residue...

The successful Hooters manager takes food ordering and inventory issues very seriously, as you can take approximately one-third of your annual sales and compute the dollars we are talking about and the impact of properly managing these items with respect to your bottom line. Every mis-managed inventory or ordering item in the long run will come off of your bottom line in the form of higher food cost. Our target blended food, paper, beverage, and T-shirt cost of sales is below 30% of sales. T-shirt costs are below 50%. The successful Hooters Manager makes this happen. The areas described below are the pieces to that puzzle the superstars can correctly put together on a consistent basis.

Inventory counts are very important. They should always be 100% accurate. Integrity is of imperative importance. Never should a manager assume a quantity. The counts should be verified and double checked when in doubt. The General Manager is signing off of the restaurant's numbers and his or her success or failure depends on how they turn out. Each Manager must support the GM in this quest. If he or she did not personally count these items, the General Manager must be sure that the counts are accurate, timely, and verifiable. Each Manager when doing inventory should count each item, never estimating or guessing. The Excellent Manager should never allow an out-of-line number to go forward without automatically recounting the items to verify that the number is correct.

The counts are no good if they are costed out using incorrect cost information. It is the duty of the Excellent Manager to verify costs from invoices of the most recently received goods on an ongoing basis, but at a very minimum at least before the end of every accounting period.

The General Manager has the duty to check up on the quantities ordered by the assistant managers. Excellent Managers use sound logic in computing how many goods to order. The Excellent Manager knows how to use the product mix to figure out how much product has been sold and to figure how much product we expect to use. A key to good food cost managing is making sure orders relate to how much food is on hand and how much we expect to use. And while the good manager has a gut feel, he or she also is skeptical enough to double check his or her numbers and do a little math and a little figuring. Running Hooters is more of a science than an art. There is no artistry and no reward for throwing away spoiled goods or having to run to the nearest grocery store because we ran out of something due to an improperly done or forgotten order. This tells ownership that someone is really asleep at the switch. (unless sales doubled for no reason or something....)

The Excellent Hooters Manager UNDERSTANDS what the receiving report is for, and how invoices post to it, and it to the DOC. They understand why correct costs and counts are important in inventory, and why getting promo pay in correctly and on time is important. The excellent Hooters Manager double checks his cash work, his Hooters Girls check outs, credit card receipts, EVERYTHING EVERYDAY. Retail is Detail. The Excellent Hooters Manager is superior at attention to detail and numerical integrity.
The Excellent Managers have a net Cash Over/Short of very close to $0. Very few unsupported credit card charge-backs, very few un-reimbursed cash shortages.

Par levels are a crutch, which are okay to use if not relied upon blindly. The key is to turn over inventory as often as possible, and rotate religiously using First-In First-Out. The Excellent Manager should consider the variables of “reorder point” and “delivery day”, along with “consumption rate”. The Excellent Manager will know how quickly items are used, how often they are delivered, and how long the items take to receive once ordered. When inventories are lower, theft becomes more difficult and more obvious. So tightly tuned inventory par levels are another key to good food cost management.

The good manager maintains good and cordial relations with all vendors, and provides them frequent opportunities to quote our business. However, the Excellent Manager should never make purchasing decisions based on favoritism. His decision should be based on whoever can deliver the correct product consistently at the lowest cost to us.

As stated above, the Hooters Manager must have 110% integrity, and zero tolerance for dishonesty. Dishonest employees increase your food costs and labor costs, and probably get away with giving the least degree of customer service possible. No one should be allowed to steal and get away with it. The manager must cultivate relationships with employees to breed loyalty such that they will turn against the dishonest employees for the good of the restaurant and possibly even secretly turn in the culprits. The Excellent Manager must exercise professional skepticism. That is, he or she must assume that it is possible that any employee could be stealing. He or she must take steps to verify accuracy in counts, quantities used and sold, as well as delivered. CYA!!! The Excellent Manager must be firm enough to unconditionally terminate the employment of anyone he or she proves to be dishonest, including theft. An effective Manager will set traps, hire bar watchers, kitchen insiders to catch thieves. The unsuccessful manager will simply let these things go unchecked and just hope for the best. CMC will not retain these managers who do not attack problem areas, such as theft.

Besides being blatantly illegal, the Excellent Manager knows how to have fun, but lives a relatively clean life. That means no drug use, and if the manager drinks, he or she does so responsibly. Furthermore, and Excellent Manager eliminates known drug users from his or her staff, while the mediocre, short term manager looks the other way. The Excellent Manager realizes the impact of drug use amongst his or her staff on productivity, integrity including theft, and ultimately, the impact on his or her restaurant’s top line, sales, the bottom profit. Furthermore, the Excellent Manager, as a career individual thinks larger than just running shifts for 50 or 60 hours a week. He or she thinks of him or herself as a member of the community, a role model for his or her employees, and someone’s father, mother, son, daughter, boyfriend, or girlfriend. The Excellent Manager takes pride in his or her own self-image, and cares about the image he or she projects. Successful companies, except for bio-tech companies, have nothing to do with drugs--and neither do Excellent Managers. The Excellent Manager is also wise enough to know that ownership will investigate all rumors of drug use, and upon finding of fact will terminate and in some cases prosecute those mediocre managers who violate the company’s drug and alcohol abuse policies.

The policy is that at no time will an employee be permitted to consume alcoholic beverages while clocked in or otherwise on working time. This includes, but is not limited to, shifts worked in the restaurant, employee meetings, promotions, and recruiting ventures Employees can not drink while in uniform, whether they are on the clock or not. Employees are not allowed to consume alcoholic beverages in the restaurant even when it is closed. This would immediately terminate an Excellent Manager’s employment. Under no circumstances are employees permitted to bring alcoholic beverages or any illegal substances onto Hooters property or to a Hooters sponsored event. You are not allowed to purchase alcohol at the restaurant for consumption away from the restaurant. An Excellent Manager keeps his or her drinking and his or her employment activities totally separated.

We recognize the age group of our prospective employees. However, we regard the drug culture to be of greater risk to the success of our company and the reputation of our restaurant than the cost and increased work required to find drug-free employees. Without reservation, all employees are required to be tested by urine cup for drug use prior to employment. It is the responsibility of the Excellent Manager to carry out this duty as detailed completely in the HR Binder.

Fraternization can be manifested in the form of phone calls, phone messages, emails, text messages, hand signals, notes, post-it notes, and/or any other form of communication that is not absolutely necessary as it relates to the business of the store. The Excellent Manager knows his role is that of a coach or sometimes parent. He or She know in many ways he or she is a mentor and is expected to lead by example. Consent of the employee is a non-issue and would not waive potential liability of the manager or our company in case the communication could later be judged to be harassing or otherwise improper or illegal. Managers and store employees are prohibited from communicating in these forms other than phone calls regarding shift schedules, promotions or policy issues that are best dealt with face to face. In addition, with the advent of Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social networking and media, and the presence of cell phones which can record video and take photographs…..the excellent manager must always aspire to create a culture of treating our employees well by ACTUALLY treating them well and having them work in a positive and professional environment, free from any type of threatening behavior by management or other employees, or by allowing our staff to receive unreasonably intimidating or compromising behavior from our guests. Yes, the Excellent Managers must have big shoulders and octopus arms to keep a span of control over everything which affects atmosphere and the well being of the Excellent Manager’s employees. And don’t assume everything is okay. Seek Feedback often…and thank them for the feedback. If problems exist, solve them. Immediately.

The Excellent Manager must reinforce proper portion control and perform spot checks and require his or her assistant managers to perform periodic spot checks of portion weights and yields per gross product or bag, for items like buffalo shrimp, crab legs, onion rings, cheese sticks. This should not be done a few times a year. It should be done a few times per day and per week by every manager. The CMC Hooters Pocket Rocket is the appropriate form on which to record these test counts. An effective GM realizes the HUGE impact of mis-portioning a key ingredient such as crab legs, buffalo or 31-35 count shrimp, or even something like onion rings by even 1 ounce or 1 unit. This variance will cost the restaurant THOUSANDS of dollars per year. The effective GM makes sure that money gets to the bottom line.

Power cooking, especially of wings, must be prohibited and this must be reinforced by each manager. Product must be fresh, and we must have no waste. Hooters is a cook-to-order concept. Wings must be fresh and hot. Not luke-warm or cool and either soggy or dry. In addition to our Hooters Girls, Hooters is known for great food fresh from scratch. Every customer must have Nearly World Famous Chicken Wings, not just the ones that weren't power cooked. No power cooking. Power cooking is for sissies!

Excellent Managers make sure all “mistakes,” either intentional ones or real mistakes, or items from those times when the “sissies” mentioned previously didn’t count correctly the wrong quantity of items were cooked or whenever a item is made but not sold, these items go into a waste bucket. Managers need to observe and count the waste bucket quantities and counsel those who contributed to this, thereby worsening our food cost.

The effective Manager has taken the time to memorize the Hooters Food Specifications. He or she also knows every time the specs are updated. The Effective Manager sweats the details. An effective Manager keeps deviant behaviors from becoming the norm by constantly punishing errant behaviors and reinforcing proper or normative behaviors with praise and other rewards. Most Excellent Managers know what "sweating the details" means: frill picks on wing set-ups, sausage in the gumbo, great looking lettuce, and properly (thick enough-not paper thin or watery) sliced tomatoes on plate set-ups. Effective managers notice this every time they are on the line and never walk by crappy lettuce or bad tomatoes. Furthermore, instead of just correcting the bad set-up, the effective Manager looks at all of the tomatoes, the entire lexan of leaf lettuce. If anything is bad, he or she gets it replaced with proper product, and then investigates to find out who prepped the product incorrectly and in effect was attempting to serve our guests bad product and scare away business to our competitors. This employee would then be counseled and shown the correct way.

Our delivery men at Hooters must have made hundreds of dollars off of us in the past. Management teams, led by the GM, must adhere to proper receiving procedures without fail. Do not let the Delivery men have access to our back of the house without 100% presence by a manager, who checks in the goods. Furthermore, the effective Manager checks costs to make sure they are correct and in line with what we are supposed to be paying. The great GMs talk to each other and find out what each other is paying to find out how each of them can get goods for the lowest cost. In addition, Excellent managers make sure beer guys from beer companies are not unhooking kegs in series from their walk-ins. This is manager’s job, because the Excellent Manager is cognizant of the cost of the 1/8 of a half-keg that that beer guy is trying to take away from us, thereby trying to sell us more beer than we need. We must optimize our costs.

Hospitality is the hallmark of being in the business we are in. That is, to make the visit of our guests enjoyable....from every acronym from every foodservice company ever in operation: QSC, QSCV, QSCVOOFAMP, Hospitaliano, CoBaSo, WOW……you name it, it means giving the guests what they come here for. And more! Every guest, every visit.
This responsibility belongs to every employee, and it is the Manager's responsibility to make sure that a hospitable behavior occurs CONSTANTLY.

One of the most important things for an Excellent Manager to do is to make sure that the guest NEVER feels or perceives indifference on the part of the staff. Every Hooters that we operate has suffered from varying degrees of this disease at one point or another. There are several "moments of truth" in a guest's experience (Service That Sells says there are 12), and the first one begins when the guest is outside of the restaurant. His or her external impression is important. The Excellent Manager’s restaurant appears to the guest to be clean, and has good reader board messages, lights all burning, lights on after dusk or if cloudy, balloons up making us appear festive, parking lot clean and sidewalks free of grease, lawns and shrubs manicured, flower beds nice looking. This is true because the Excellent Managers knows that all of these are things which make an impression even before human contact. But he or she also knows that the thing which can override most all of what happens on the outside of the restaurant is what happens when the guest walks into the restaurant. Without exception, the first thing a guest should hear immediately should be "HI! WELCOME TO HOOTERS!" The General Manager is responsible for making every employee sensitive to this and to behave in this way. The Excellent Manager sings this tune right in sync with the GM. Critical to the Hooters concept is the process where gorgeous Hooters Girls greet our guests upon entering our premises, causing the guest(s) immediately to forget what they were worrying about and begin their "vacation" without ever leaving the town...right here at Hooters. The Excellent Manager must set the example by hitting the door or quickly approaching arriving guests with a greeting if all Hooters Girls are busy. But the better Manager knows when he or she should be staffing a hostessing Hooters Girl, and the Manager has also trained the Hooters Girl at the Bar to be a voracious greeter, bright, cheery, beautiful, sincere, and definitely audible. The Manager must have as a mission to constantly whisper in Hooters Girls ears to grab the door, and greet our guests. If Hooters Girls are "not into" this, they should not work at Hooters. The effective Manager sets this standard during the first interview. They should make the candidate demonstrate their greeting as the manager walks into the see if the Hooters Girl candidate is bubbly and vivacious enough. If there's no spark, she shouldn't work at Hooters. The Excellent Manager never tolerates inattentive Hooters Girls at the Door. Likewise, when the guests are leaving, they should be bid a hearty farewell, prom queen wave and all. The Excellent Manager must cultivate this behavior within his or her Hooters Girl staff. He or she must do it him or herself often enough to be the example, and insist that his or her assistant managers enforce and exhibit the same behavior. It is almost impossible to calculate the value of this behavior. Think of Wal-Mart and Sam Walton when you want to think of someone who did not underestimate the importance of this, and see the impact that proper performance has had for his wallet!

Another example of deliberate and excellent service to guests is proper table maintenance. This is lacking at many Hooters because at times the management team members sometimes choose not to direct their Hooters Girls to stop chit-chatting in the waits stations or flirting with management or one specific table of customers, and instead do what they were hired to do, provide proper service to all guests and entertain. The Seventeen Steps of Hooters Hospitality. All managers should know them off of the top of their heads, and the Excellent Manager should definitely know them (maybe a new tattoo....) No guest likes to eat with a plate full of wings bones, crab leg carcasses, and/or used napkins piled in front of him or her. Any passing Hooters Girl or Manager on the Floor should be constantly searching for things they can remove from the table (“Hands Full Golden Rule”) Maintenance means also making sure the tables have everything they need: napkins, silverware, and a Hooters Girl entertaining them. Table Maintenance means making sure the order is correct and complete, and the food quality and presentation are excellent. The Excellent Manager must reinforce this by doing this also him or herself, making sure the assistant managers reinforce this also, and finally, constantly coach the Hooters Girls to look for this and do this also. This is usually more difficult to train in newer stores, but in older stores, the Hooters Girls usually divide themselves between those who are truly hospitality-oriented and find table maintenance a natural act, and those who are in it only for themselves and who will do the bare minimum (or what THEY think is necessary...forget the Twelve Steps of Service) or feel that being so servile is belittling. (They don't get it). Those people should not be Hooters Girls. The effective Manager puts all personal prejudices aside and objectively observes and looks for the correct behavior, takes notes, and coaches. The Manager gives a lot of "atta gal"s to the Hooters Girls carrying the load and doing a proper job, with specific recognition for the specifically correct thing that they were doing. Those who do not improve after coaching, the Excellent Manager replaces as soon as possible. Excellent Managers use training games such as “Set-Up Survivor” and “Bus-Tub Survivor” to reinforce and make fun learning the right table maintenance habits.

The effective Hooters Manager reinforces teamwork by using it him or herself within the management team. The GM cannot do everything him or herself, so the GM must divide and delegate. But to be effective, the GM must be a great recognizer of when things get done. And the Excellent Manager with his or her staff. Praise in public. Write memos of thanks. Recognize team players within the staff. Don't let hourly employees leave early at night, sticking others with the work. The effective Manager always takes the side of the person putting in the time and getting the work done for the good of the restaurant. The Excellent Manager notes who the clock watchers are and who is concerned only for themselves. Hooters Girls may be bossy with each other or with the hostess. The kitchen staff may try to skip out on specific cleaning or prep duties. The effective Manager does not tolerate employees who bring the team down with their selfishness. He or she realizes that employee is probably short changing the guest too...and the profitability of the restaurant. The great Managers get everyone thinking "we" instead of "me" and "you". A team means "us" & "we" not "I" "me" "you" "them". Excellent Managers must reinforce this. But the effective Manager does this most effectively by being firm, fair, and kind, instead of being inconsistent, or trying to get in a "doing favors and being owed favors" position with the employees, back and front of house.

It is very important the successful Manager be an excellent operator--hands on, with initiative, energy, creativity, and a stick-to-it-aveness which translates in walking and moving quickly but calmly....making sure ticket times are under twelve minutes...even during busy lunches or on weekend slams. The effective Manager realizes that in our impatient society, people will not return to a place where the service is not quick. The effective Manager knows things by having actually done them and by not being afraid to demonstrate again and jump right back into it, whether it's numbers on the DOC, inventory, cooking Phillys, or pre-bussing tables, or bidding guest farewell at the door as he or she opens the door for the guest. The effective Manager talks up his/her game constantly to reinforce the standards of ticket times and product quality. Instead of inquiring about every non-work thing when talking with Hooters Girls and other managers, he/she should be asking how quick service was, and get specific. 12 Minute ticket times are the standard. Standards are made to be exceeded by great performers.

The effective Hooters Manager should know that atmosphere is key to Hooters’ success. In fact it is a CORNERSTONE of the Hooters concept. That atmosphere must contain and exhibit the critical components of Fun, Attitude, and Teamwork. Those behaviors and conditions that affect Hooters Atmosphere are squarely the responsibility of the Excellent Manager to constantly monitor, fix, increase....That's what restaurants of the this millennium will have, that the unsuccessful restaurants will not: that is, the atmosphere that largely contributes to the guest(s) exciting and entertaining dining experience. That's right, dining experience. Guests are not just going out to eat. They want an experience. The GM must insure that at Hooters, the guests will be getting that and more. Again, MANY factors affect this. The GM has to be constantly checking the restaurant's pulse to detect these and prevent any lapses in atmosphere. A few tools for this are as follows:

The fact that we have these in most of our Hooters locations is a coup at all. We have a "free" way to advertise our concept to our daily traffic counts, which is somewhere between 20,000 and 40,000 people for each of our locations. So it is the Excellent Manager's responsibility to combine our free advertising opportunities to both reinforce our "delightfully tacky, yet unrefined" image and also sometimes provide promotional messages or sales related messages. At no time should the Manager allow the same message to remain on his or her reader board for more than a day. If big events are coming in the evening, the excellent Hooters Manager will even add or change the message in the late afternoon to highlight the night's event or provide something interesting and different for the drivers heading home (or out to eat and be entertained) in the evening.

An important feature of the NetPOS point of sale system is that it allows us to change the last lines of the guest's check. We can make the messages verbose or brief. Here also we MUST make sure our locations telephone number is included. Every Excellent Manager works with his or her GM to use this tool to make neat messages to focus on upcoming Hooters' events, sporting events, or highlight current specials, happy hours, etc. This should be modified so the Management Team can use creativity in trying to reach that guest and motivate them to keep coming back and bringing friends.
Many or our restaurant have lighted display boards that can be written on with neon crayons. Usually they are provided by beer companies. The lackluster Hooters Manager lets it stay un-designed, because "we don't have any crayons." The successful Manager realizes how a lively neon board adds to his or her restaurant and presses the beer guy to get more neon crayons, and then keeps them in his or her care. The Manager should find out where those supplies can be purchased. The boards are another "free" way of advertising and promoting to our guests.

Another "must do" for every successful Hooters Manager is to never run out of balloons and ALWAYS have them up outside of the restaurant prior to opening. Some locations, like Station Square, are more difficult to tell when it's actually open, so balloons help, and make it look more festive. The successful Hooters Managers find the lowest cost provider for these balloons, which is usually a local party store, or as a last resort Aero Garment or Super Sports. Every Hooters Manager should also continue to make Hooters a key part of the "home-town" crowd by coordinating the colors of the balloons to the colors of the teams or events that are going on at the time. Sound too corny? Little things count—Big time!

The successful Hooters always feel like something is going on. Every Hooters Girl is talking about it. Events are listed on flyers, calendars, foyer displays, rear exit displays, in the bathrooms, on neon boards, on employee bulletin boards, on posters in the break room, on laminated calendars in the manager's and promo manager's offices, on the reader board (everywhere). Did you notice I did not say "on banners from Beer companies?" That is the lazy Manager's way out. First, every Hooters Manager must understand the extreme importance of promotions and events at Hooters. Having gorgeous Hooters Girls, great wings, cold beer, and our beach atmosphere, is a combination that competing restaurants cannot combat very well. We must leverage that ace up our sleeve. It is VERY important to have promotions events scheduled, big and small, and then to communicate them to staff and guests. Events must be posted. And there must be events to post. Every successful Hooters Manager takes advantage of technology to help him or her communicate this: Corel Draw, Calendar Creator Plus, Form Worx, Print Shop Deluxe. The Excellent Manager must have events posted in a presentation style that is sharp and effective, and still practical from a cost perspective (as little cost as possible).

A consummate Hooters Manager knows and lives the first and tenth Commandment of a Hooters Girl. "Thall shalt always SMILE." It is difficult to get Hooters Girls to smile if Excellent Managers don't smile. If we remain solution oriented instead of problem oriented, then we are more likely to be smiling and find it easier to relate to others and get them to smile. The very successful Hooters is full of smiling Hooters Girls. The Excellent Manager must find effective ways to make this happen, and not rest until it does.

The music is critical to Hooters' atmosphere. The music at Hooters should help the place feel sort of like at a fraternity party in the 50's, 60's, over even the 80’s, like Animal House (but we kick the Blutos out). Music helps the place hop! The outside speakers should always preview to the incoming and departing guest the experience that they are about to have or have just had. This is very important. Dead air should never happen. All TVs should be on, working, tuned to sports, and dust-free. Every Excellent Manager must be totally capable of operating the amps, satellite receivers, TVs, sound system, microphone for promo use, and know what to do in case of a snowstorm if/when DMX will not work. Every zone in the restaurant must have good sound level. Every TV must be on. However, the simplest thing, being unaware of the volume of the tunes, or what channel the TVs are on in the restaurant, allowing it to feel dead, or being so loud that no one can hear each other, is another way that CMC Ownership gets a hint that this manager does not “get it” about managing Hooters....It’s that important and critical....again...the social chairman of a fraternity, or beach party thrower....that’s the proper Hooters Manager’s perspective when it comes to music, TVs, and atmosphere.

Hooters lighting should be correct at all times, and the Excellent Manager gets this right. During daytime, interior lighting should be full up. In the evening, about shift change time in the winter and after 6 or 7 p.m. in the summer, the lights should be turned to their pre-designated levels, usually marked by one of the owners at the store’s opening. This should be dimmer than daylight, enough to take the glare off, but no so dark that one cannot see clearly across the room or that it feels like a bar. Hooters is a restaurant.

A very critical component of Hooters success is the Hooters Girl… In fact, the Hooters Girl is the first CORNERSTONE. And who is the first Hooters Girl that many guests see? Maybe the Hooters Girl at the Bar! The Hooters Girl at the Bar must be a very capable individual with almost perfect ability AND image. She must be attractive, professional, polite, spunky, mature-minded, helpful, honest, fast moving, and should draw more regulars with ease. Filling this position is not just finding someone who will work it. It is finding someone who regards herself as a professional bartender and likes working at Hooters. She must have a great telephone personality, and understand that every phone call is a potential guest. She must be great at giving directions, and honor management policy on personal phone calls. That is, they don't happen, and people know that she won't pass them on. She must be great at greeting incoming guests from the door as they walk into the restaurant. The Hooters Girl at the Bar must draw them to the bar with a great smile and great eye contact. She also should vivaciously shout out “Hi , Welcome to Hooters!” at them as soon as they walk into the place. Sort of like the entire Cheers bar yelling “Norm” when he walked into the bar on TV. She must really make the Hooters experience what it should be. However, professional skepticism still applies. Many Hooters Girls, in their minds they are making peanuts and the management is making millions, so what’s a beer given away here or there? The successful Hooters Manager is on a constant search to find a person who fits this mold to help make his or her Hooters a second home to many people. This is a warm comfortable place, where the Hooters Girl at the Bar is like a best friend to the patrons. And she can sell and make Hooters a ton of money in the process. This Hooters Girl can be a Calendar Girl in her own way. She can't be hard to look at or on the fringe of what is acceptable at Hooters. EVERYONE who comes in your restaurant notices the Hooters Girl at the Bar. Think about that. So you want to let your bartenders get away with no makeup, hair up? You want your Hooters Girl at the Bar be an introvert, or a sourpuss? NEVER! You want your Hooters Girl at the Bar to be the epitome of a Hooters Girl? Perky, Warm, Friendly, Outgoing, and a page out of the Calendar? ALWAYS! In addition, with the advent of full liquor to Hooters, not only does the Excellent Manager put his or her most Hooteriffic Girls behind the bar, but he or she makes SURE they are trained on all of the liquor serving requirements. What can scare a bar customer or Hooters patron away more surely than a Hooters Girl who doesn’t know or can’t properly make a Hooters cocktail?

Many unsuccessful Managers think the way to labor cost management is to cut the number of girls on the floor. This isn't Shoney's or Eat n' Park or Hoss's. Hooters Girls make 1/3 of what a kitchen staffer makes in hourly pay. Hooters must feel like Hooters. That happens by guest seeing a bunch of orange shorts and tank tops running around, singing, socializing, having fun--not being stretched so thin and stressed out by having too many tables. Hooters Girls will make just as much money with four or five tables if they are allowed to be Hooters Girls. They must have time to execute the 17 Steps of Hooters Girl Hospitality, which includes Entertaining the Guests. If they have to have six or more tables to make money, they should work at Shoney's since they obviously don't understand the entertainment part of our concept. Manage labor from the back of the house forward. Make sure kitchen schedules are efficient. Don't bring in guys until you need them. Don't cut too many girls too fast after lunch rush. Stagger them out of there. Bring in enough girls early enough to make sure shift change is handled easily and those guest arriving between four and five o'clock in the afternoon get a PM girl, and everyone knows who's getting which tables. Our guests should not sense that a shift change is occurring.

While the Kitchen employees are not the prime reason guests come to Hooters, they CAN be a reason why guests do not return. Kitchen employees should interact with guests, and should understand that "50% of the Meal is Eye Appeal!" Guests eat with their eyes. The kitchen, while busy and hustling, should stay as neat as possible. The cooks should always be wearing aprons full up, not folded down. When aprons are folded down, their shirts get grungy. As previously stated, no earring or beards are allowed, and only the neatest of goatees will be permitted. The successful Hooters Manager helps the GM cultivate a management philosophy which does not allow a weak link in enforcing earring and beard rules...and double checking those goatees instead of looking the other way.. Soon, his kitchen staff learns not to test any managers. The guests don't want earrings in their food, or bacteria after a cook scratches his beard with his gloved hand. And guests see this.

The professionalism of the cooks depends on the reinforcement and treatment by the management team, led by the GM. Cursing should not be allowed or tolerated. Nor should arguing. The kitchen should be focused. Ready to hustle, sing, have fun, clean furiously, to "rock the kitchen, baby!" and challenge the Hooters Girls as to "who rocks the floor, baby?". Floor sweeps and equipment wipe downs should be second nature. The Excellent Manager sets this standard by directing this to be done often. The successful Excellent Manager neither ignores or lords over the kitchen staff, inconsistently yelling at employees or totally ignoring them, instead of working with and encouraging them. Another key that the successful Hooters Manager realizes is that you must pay your good people well and continue to recruit and train. The Excellent Manager MUST insist on excellence and instill pride when it is achieved. The Excellent Manager does not let the events of the day or his or her degree of fatigue affect his or her objectivity about the work which should be done to operate and clean the restaurant to the highest specification.

At CMC, we go to great lengths to ensure the managers we hire are ethically strong. That is to say an excellent manager is above reproach in his or her integrity, morality, and judgment. He or she would never do anything to bring harm to the reputation of the restaurant, or scheme in any way to provide less than 100% honest information on all company reports and adherence to CMC policies and procedures. Excellent Managers do not condone, tolerate, or “look the other way” if cash handling policies are not being followed. They make sure the Safe Fund is always 100% correct, free of IOU’s, or any other form of script. All deposits are secured, taken to the bank on time, validated to the Deposit Control Log. The Excellent Manager always makes sure Petty Cash balances, and has evidential support for expense paid at all times. They also keep accurate records for gift certificates, promo certificates, charity funds, and the like. The truly Excellent Manager finds it second nature to be honest, and make sure that fiscal accuracy is precise. They understand the implications of dishonesty regarding tip share payouts, contest prize cash, gift certificates, petty cash funds, safe funds..... CMC will not employ managers with less than 100% integrity. Having sound ethics, professionally and personally, makes compliance with condition a given for Excellent Managers.

The Excellent and Successful Hooters Manager not only possesses the skills unique to a Hooters manager, being sensitive to atmosphere and promotional things unique to Hooters, but also uses the skills of a professional manager in the restaurant industry, regardless of concept. All of the concept building in the world does no good unless the Manager can parlay that progression into a profit on the bottom line. This is the single most important measure of a Manager's success: The dollars of profit on the bottom line. The more dollars there are, the more valuable a Manager will be. There are many, many administrative duties in the huge ball of what makes a Manager effective from an administrative perspective.

The effective Hooters Manager does not merely shoot from the hip. We formerly used a Communications Log. However, there should be nothing that cannot be reflected in the MOD Log. Therefore, we require, instead of communication logs, that managers use meaningful and voluminous comments in the Manager Of the Day Log (MOD Log). The Excellent Manager does not deal in broad abstractions, but follows a disciplined problem identification and solution approach, in writing. He cites specific examples both when he finds behaviors outside of specifications and when recognizing good performance. The effective Hooters Manager refers back to and augments his own notes, noting follow up progress. The effective Manager writes effective notes and descriptions of the business in the MOD log. The more information, the better informed our decisions will be. A good Manager does not make decisions based on his or her ego or gut feeling alone. A good Manager's decisions are supported by written documentation of observed behavior by the management team. It's difficult to know where the ship is going if you can't tell where it's been.

The good Hooters Manager dutifully responds on time to requests from headquarters and the GM, and makes sure all correspondences are relayed to every manager, supervisor, or other pertinent person. He or she is void of cynicism, and if he or she questions the directive, he or she is confident and tactful enough to call and inquire further about the directive to understand its purpose or make suggestions to how to better achieve the objective of the directive. The Excellent Manager does not just plod along if he or she does not understand or agree with the rationale behind a directive or the proper way to proceed. The Excellent Manager finds solutions to every challenge.

Hooters managers are required to have pagers OR cell phones and keep them on at all times except during vacation periods. Especially with cell phones, your store in an emergency does not need to get your voice mail. And even then, the good Hooters Manager will check in with his or her store. Excellent Managers report in to the GM often, all constantly aware of the common goal to drive sales and maximize profits. Pagers are never turned off or calls not returned. Messages left on answering machines are always returned. The Excellent Manager understands that sacrificing five minutes of personal time and a phone call for the sake of maintaining the smooth operation of the restaurant is worth it, compared to the results of a stressed out manager and rough shift operation or dissatisfied guests because of something the MOD did not know how to do-- and could not get in touch with anyone to find out. Furthermore, in case of emergencies the usefulness of pagers is self-explanatory. An excellent manager does not hide. He or she lets the team know where he or she will be. If a manager is called too much when away from work, this is good indicator that the other managers maybe should be given more comprehensive information prior to the manager leaving the restaurant.

The Excellent Manager monitors discounts to make sure that they are honest discounts, taken by guests in earnest, not being used fraudulently by Hooters Girls or Kitchen Staff. Discount Chits must be used for EVERY discount. All Discounts must be logged on the Adjustment Log. This is monitored and audited. We must have third party evidence that a deduction from a check for food that has been prepared is valid. Also, a well running Hooters has all managers logging all discounts and having them balance with the system total every day, with very little discrepancy In addition to being honest, the Excellent Manager has good business judgment. The good Hooters Manager knows which offers are driving sales and may appear to be incremental, versus specials which are worn out or appear to be regular customers substituting cash with a coupon. Effective and honest Hooters Managers do not give out the password for discounting to Hooters Girls or Kitchen Staff.

Excellent Managers seem to be excellent, balanced individuals. These people set aside time to plan, assess themselves, and set goals for themselves. The good Hooters Manager sets goals high enough to distinguish him or herself from the mediocrity of the average pack. He also encourages and sets goals for his or her assistant managers. Achievable, and with opportunities for rewarding and esteem building, Goal setting is imperative to instill a sense of accomplishment along with having actual achievements and progress. This goal setting should be done in a formal manner with managers also as frequently as possible. Some goals are longer term than others.

Anyone can shoot from the hip verbally. It takes an excellent manager to coach, counsel, and set goals in writing, and then set an appointment mentally with him or herself, and follow up or report on the progress at a subsequent point, and do so in writing. A good Manager notes where we are, what the goals were, what were achieved and what not, and charts a course to achieve any remaining goals while recognizing the ones achieved.

A good Hooters Manager should use several tools for motivation, and devise a "system" that helps reinforce goals, instead of drawing all attention to him or herself and making every goal a personal issue. Charting Sales lets the team know where they are. This is an easy and excellent way of focusing on positive behaviors. The old axiom is true, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” This is also a way to create momentum within the restaurant. The Excellent Hooters Manager is not shy about reward giving when rewards are due. CMC enjoys taking good care of those same Excellent Managers in similar fashion!

Again, the effective Hooters Manager analyzes and coaches on an individual basis, too, based on actual observations and results, cultivating an atmosphere of friendly competition. He is not tight with the rewards and keeps setting goals that are increasingly difficult, to make the rewards even richer for the most successful and most competitive, again based on objective measures.

The good Hooters Manager is hands on, and pushes for performance. He schedules help in at the latest possible minute and gets maximum productivity out of each team member. Staggered scheduling is essential, both Front of House (primarily for PM shift), and especially for Back of House (mostly AM but also PM). This is where the effective Hooters Manager is part psychologist. The good Hooters Manager continually coaches, counsels, and prunes his staff to reach peak performance and is never afraid to get "back there and show how it's done," and then try to teach the employees to be better than he or she is. Excellent Managers hit their labor targets of under 12.5% direct and certainly below 15% direct in all cases, and under 20.0% total raw labor. They do not procrastinate for the sake of someone's job. They keep the best employees and constantly cull and groom and staff to keep the peak performers and terminate the mediocre performers. Once that labor cost is expended, there is no way to get those dollars back onto the bottom line.

Effective Hooters Managers design their own systems to make sure food and beverage cost controls happen. They randomly check portion costs, double check invoice costs, costs in their inventory models, and they keep their inventory par levels accurate and as low as possible without stocking out. Good Managers run Hooters where there is intense employee loyalty and honesty, very little theft or pilferage, because Excellent Managers will terminate on the spot employees they see giving away food or nibbling food not paid for. Excellent Hooters Managers hire bar watchers and compare who is bartender with beverage costs over certain periods of time to make sure we do not have thieves behind the bar. They also enforce nightly beer inventories anytime costs go awry. Excellent Managers can hit 29% food cost, 22% beverage cost, and 50% T-shirt cost, along with paper costs between 0.5% and 1.0%. Excellent GMs can CONSISTENTLY hit total blended cost of sales below 30%. They are tireless until they get there and will do whatever it takes. Excellent Managers understand the impact on their P&L of 1/10 of 1% of sales. On an annual basis, between $5,000 and $10,000. Excellent Managers regard those amounts as bonus dollars they should be earning and receiving, not being piddled away as food cost waste, pilferage, theft, inaccuracy. Zero tolerance. Perfection. Day after Day. That's what it takes.

The Excellent Manager does not run his or her store to a "budget." They run it for AS LEAST COST AS THEY POSSIBLY CAN. They reinforce conservation of linens and smallwares, and office supplies, and punish wasteful employees. Again effective Managers see their bonuses being carelessly thrown away, whereas if the Hooters Manager could encourage and cause to happen even reasonable care of goods, his or her costs would plummet, and yield a bigger bottom line. Effective GMs do this by restricting purchasing authority to him or herself. After all, the EFFECTIVE Manager realizes that it is his or her SOLE responsibility to control those costs such that some of the sales make it through to the bottom line.

The effective Hooters Manager does not just cruise in and "run his or her shift." The effective Hooters Manager is always noticing the operation, taking notes, observing staff, taking notes, (using 3x5 index cards, stored in his or her back pocket) and then at the proper time, coaching and directing to make happen a better course of action that will positively affect sales and the bottom line. The Excellent Manager is constantly guiding people to exceed the specifications and be great Hooters employees. This style gets results, and results are what counts to a successful Manager at Hooters.


Although the Excellent Hooters manager is aware of the shopping criteria, and is on the constant watch to make sure those behaviors are happening, even he or she can become, unfortunately, susceptible to walking by the same things every day. A mystery shopper report will awaken a manager to the GUESTS perception. An EXCELLENT manager will respond and make adjustments based on mystery shopper’s report. The Excellent manager will not just assume that comments made are an isolated event. The Excellent Manager will communicate with his or her other managers to make sure everyone is always on their toes...front of house and back of house...knowing that our customers “shop” us every day and night.

The effective Hooters Manager spends enough time with his or her GM analyzing, studying, and understanding his or her profit and loss statements, his or her inventories and employee schedules to almost be able to quote what normal costs are for items on the P&L, for the cost of inventory items, and what normal on-hand quantities are along with an approximate consumption rate. The Excellent Manager also knows all the employees--their strengths and weaknesses. The Excellent Manager always knows where his or her sales are at, compared to last week, and last year, and where his or her labor is at, again compared to previous results. These numbers are quick at hand, on the MOD log

The Excellent Manager is accurate and neat in his or her presentation style and the presentation of his or her restaurant's numbers. The inventory spreadsheets are always correctly sorted and the correct font, with the correct borders and correct number formats, with dollar signs, commas for thousands...the details.... His forms always add up correctly and make sense. The Excellent Manager knows that the numbers make sense because he or she understands what they mean and has already investigated anything out of line, going backwards to find the cause of the problem, and setting a course to not have the problem recur and fix the problem if it still exists. The effective Hooters Manager never turns in numbers, and says "oh, wild numbers this week. Dunno why, probably will go back other way next week." The effective Hooters Manager stops this not-so-merry-go-round and nails it every week. His numbers are tight and right.

REGULARLY WRITE MEMOS, TO-DO, FOLLOW UPS Effective Hooters Managers set aside time for effective correspondence. Maybe five or ten minutes a day, an hour or two a week to update to-do's, to write follow-ups on last week's to-do's, to respond in writing to memos from the office or to guests.

The effective Hooters Manager writes to the community also, always spelling correctly and using proper letter style to make a great impression as the consummate professional that the excellent Hooters Manager is.

The good Hooters Manager knows the area like he or she has lived their all their lives, and makes a point to read enough current periodical information to know what's going on in the area and tries to leverage that knowledge into opportunities to involve Hooters and increase sales. (or in the rare cases, we may avoid certain groups, or show empathy for tragedies and help any way we can.) The Excellent Manager, once again, effectively communicates this with his staff, using the promo manager, memos, jumpstart meetings.

The effective Hooters Manager cannot be a procrastinator or one who always must be putting out fires from lack of planning. The effective Hooters Manager makes a point to find out everything going on three months ahead of time, from sporting events to conventions, and the like. He or she maximizes the opportunities to have Hooters benefit from those events for the least cost. Hooters must be an "in" part of the community, and the excellent Hooters Management Team, led by the GM, gets us there.

Effective Hooters Managers realize the awesome potential for guests in hotels without restaurants. The Excellent Managers should be taking care of the bell captains like they were our own employees. The smart GM has prepared a list of the surrounding hotels for ease of instant winging. The Excellent Manager helps add to this list. He or she takes a personal interest and makes a point every so often to treat the hotel GM and strike a mutually beneficial and cordial business relationship. The most effective strategy would be to allow some sort of Hooters advertisement with the Hotel in the room and have some program to alert guests to the nearby Hooters. Maybe even drop off some flyers, coupons, or Hooters matches.

The effective Hooters Manager realizes the advertising power of Hooters Matches. And this is one thing a guest keeps with him or her for a while, at such a low cost to us. The effective Hooters Manager never lets his or her restaurant run out of Hooters Matches, just like we don't run out of balloons, string, helium, kids menus, crayons.....details, details, details!

While what happens on a person’s cell phone or in their email world will never surpass in importance what can happen to them when they are PRESENT in a Hooters Restaurant, the Excellent Manager UNDERSTANDS the additional methods of making impressions on our guests, as well as those who have not yet come to love Hooters as much as the Excellent Manager does. The Excellent Manager always ensures that he or she, or a member of his or her Excellent Management Team updates the Facebook pages and Hooters of XXXX website and keeps it current with the location’s exciting events, and upcoming great events. In addition, the Excellent Manager makes sure every opportunity to add members to the database of his or her restaurant’s customer base is taken full advantage of, by constantly having Hooters Girl integrate as part of their normal service experience to inquire if the guest would like to be made aware of special deals, coupons, offers by way of email or cell phone texting and offers to register them at one of the several methods which are available to Hooters. The Excellent Manager also knows to tow a middle of the road line regarding electronic communication, and never designs or writes in a way that would “bring harm to the Owl”. In other words, the Excellent Manager understands that messages put forth in electronic communication formats stay alive FOREVER….

While this could have been discussed under atmosphere, it is important from an administrative point of view as well as motivational and for atmosphere purposes. This is the opportunity to cover policies and promotional information to all Hooters Girls and Kitchen staff. Sometimes, important and serious information should be conveyed, and it is just as important to inform the night crews as the day crews. What an opportunity to pump up his or her staff! Effective Hooters Managers do not hold "low key" meetings, He or she is vibrant, and all Hooters employees can see the excitement in his or her face. The effective Hooters Manager realizes that morale and mood start with the Manager him or herself. And so he or she takes charge of this responsibility and makes sure that all other managers respect and respond to this duty 110%. To quote Jim Sullivan, “Be a Blow Torch, not a Candle.” Effective Managers use effective jump-starts to keep Hooters hopping!

Good GMs hold regular employee meetings. Some just for back of house or front of house only, and some for the entire staff. These meetings should always be substantive and end in a positive way and always provide and opportunity for dialogue. The effective GM uses great presentation skills, with flipcharts, films, etc, and has practiced his or her presentation to provide a motivating session. The Excellent Manager has astute observations which can add to these meetings.

The Excellent Manager regards himself or herself as “Trainer in Chief” and this is not only by having been through the training and learning the material, but by being a walking-talking teacher trainer. Excellent General Managers make sure they observe their certified trainers often, and do not let training get diluted. They keep their training files and specifications current, and do not allow trainers to take short cuts be it in the Heart of House or in Hooters Girl training. As the HOA training systems change, Excellent CH General Managers adapt and update their training to be in synch with the best methods agreed to by CH Management.

The excellent Hooters Manager understands the impact of raising guest check averages by even one dollar. He or she is constantly monitoring the Hooters Girls to look for opportunities to praise them for suggestive selling and coach them if they are not. The effective Hooters Manager makes sure the suggestive selling tapes are used in training. He or she also re-performs the suggestive selling workshop to new employees every so often. The great Hooters Manager holds contests constantly, like Wingo and Tic-Tac-Dough to reward the Hooters Girls for suggestive selling well.

The effective Hooters Manager GM knows that promotions can “shoot your restaurant in the foot” if not properly planned. And proper planning depends on making sure promotions are scheduled as far in advance as possible, using a “count-back” method. He or she makes sure there is coordinated communication between the promotions person and the employee schedulers. And these are done in as far in advance as possible. The great GM makes sure he has a 3 month laminated Calendar on the wall, on which all promotions are scheduled and also that a Promotion Execution Checklist is properly filled out and reviewed with all managers and hourly personnel involved in the promotion. The Excellent Managers also realizes that if a promotion is requested with such short notice that it cannot be properly done, we do not accept the proposition. Similarly, the Excellent Managers balances his promotions outside of the restaurant against the demands from what is going on AT the restaurant, not over-stretching his staff such that the Hooters Experience cannot be delivered in 100% correct fashion at either the restaurant OR at the promotion.

The Excellent Hooters Manager is not a clock watcher. He or she knows that observation, coaching, and action are required in Hooters to make it a success. The excellent Hooters manager knows that he or she cannot observe, coach, or act in many ways if he or she is not present. This means putting in the time--stopping in on days off, staying an extra hour or two if extremely busy or working on projects. This does NOT mean not having a private life. But the effective Hooters Manager knows that putting in enough time will ensure smoother and more successful operation of the restaurant, which will save time in the long run. This time is devoted to coaching other managers, devoting time to memo writing or making charts with which to motivate the staff. The Excellent Manager takes advantage of our newer technology which can allow him to view the restaurant via it’s internet accessed camera systems to check on activities at the restaurant from time to time. He or she also spends time when necessary reviewing recorded video if he or she suspects improper activity related to behavior of bartenders, other managers, or to see 1st person incidents relating to a customers’ complaint. When the excellent Hooters manager is away from the restaurant, he or she often pays attention to his or her surroundings, looking for and thinking of opportunities to link Hooters to the community and draw more guests to the restaurant. He or she also pays attention to other restaurant's operations, noting what is working, and determining if those successful ideas can be used at Hooters. He or she does not wait until someone for CMC Headquarters or HOA tells them what to do. The Excellent Hooters Manager possesses high levels of creativity and initiative, and a keen sense for correct business building behaviors. The effective Hooters manager does not let a time pass where he or she does not have contest of some sort going on, a chart of some sort reminding someone what the goals are and where everyone stands. He or she also never fails to have a record of praising employees to encourage future great performance, like pictures of a reward ceremony, a chart circling, starring, or highlighting the leader, or positive comment cards or good scores on mystery shops, posted in the employee break room.

The Hooters Manager position is a powerful position with regard to Hooters reputation in the community. The Hooters Manager should take advantage of this and use every opportunity to help Hooters become a staple of the community. That comes from being a positive Hooters like manager when away from the restaurant, and taking every opportunity to "network" and grow more Hooters-friendly people to the concept. The Hooters Manager should be proud to be recognized as the Hooters Manager when he or she is in the grocery store, at sporting events, at church, at the health club, the mall, other restaurants, the movies, everywhere...building up the image. Looking for opportunities to make YOUR restaurant more popular and profitable. The best Hooters managers live close to their stores, and are "Bully Pulpits" when out in the neighborhood, letting everyone know with pride that person is a Hooters Manager or the General Manager. The excellent manager always carries his or her business cards, and invites neighborhood contacts to "come and see me at my place--Hooters!"

The Cornett Management Company Hooters Managers should be known as consummate professionals. No one is perfect, but we should be known for pursuing excellence at every opportunity, and for creating opportunities when there appear to be none. We should treat our employees in the most excellent and professional manner possible, and our guests with the best experience we can possibly give them. Every day, every great Hooters Manager should be constantly asking himself or herself, "is what I'm doing the most excellent way that I can do this?" No matter what the task, be it an easy or difficult one, routine or uncomfortable one, that question should apply. The Excellent Hooters Manager never conducts him or herself to bring harm or shame to the organization. He always is zooming, soaring, and striving to take every opportunity to make Hooters a wonderful thing!!!!


The life of our company is a morphous being. It keeps changing, presenting every Excellent Manager with opportunities and threats, as well as exposing certain strengths and weaknesses within our own company, our own performance, as well as that of our competitors. To continue the on-going journey toward Excellence in Management, certain additional theorems, operating standards, and philosophies will become necessary for us to embrace so that we may successfully carry out our mission of Most Excellent Operations.

From the book In Pursuit of Excellence, the common traits of several successful companies are analyzed. For Excellent Operations, there exists, at the same time within the company, many areas where policies, procedures, and attitudes may be “loose”....and also may other areas where policies, procedures, and attitudes may be “tight” or strict. That is, the loose areas can be interpreted or carried out in many different ways, with varied styles of execution or follow-through. These areas also may be said to have several “shades of grey.” Other areas, conversely, of a companies operations, policies, procedures, or attitudes are very “black or white”. They either “are” or they “aren’t.” Right or Wrong. And for these “tight” areas, incorrect follow-through or interpretation, or lack of performance is objectively judged and should be easily detectable. (not subject to opinion...)

The key to being an Excellent Manager is knowing what is “loose” and what is “tight”.

Clearly, within our existing operations, administrative procedures for Excellent Managers is tight. Substandard managers have loose controls, lackadaisical enforcement of ticket times, uniform standards, cleanliness. They may even have slack attitudes towards reinforcing the fun atmosphere. This sounds like a contradiction. How can one be “tight” about making people have fun? The Excellent Manager will understand that “fun” is a cornerstone of the Hooters concept, and he or she will be proactive to find activities and help create the atmosphere to keep it fun for our guests, as well as for our employees, including him or herself.

A key hallmark of the successful franchises within the Hooters System is identifying what “type” of managers is right for Hooters. And within Cornett Hospitality, the same is true. Three elements are essential. A manager may have many other strengths. These other strengths or attributes may qualify him or her to do well in other concepts. But the Excellent Manager that succeeds within our Hooters organization will, every day, every shift, possess and exemplify three fundamental traits: They exhibit the ability to:
Work Hard, Have Fun, and Make Money!

Any one of these three things missing will cause the manager’s operations to be less than excellent....

In this age of nearly full employment and the furthering into the workplace of the Generation X and Y employees, and across the different regions where CH operates, the interpretation of “what is hospitality” varies and suffers in translation at times, as it does in many concepts. But we MUST exceed the SERVICE LEVEL of our competition. As a matter of fact, FOOD AND SERVICE is another CORNERSTONE of the Hooters concept. . But the Excellent Manager knows that wherever he or she manages, guests like to be noticed and made to feel welcome. That is why the Excellent Manager understands and takes special steps to ensure every arriving and departing guest is greeted when entering his or her Hooters Restaurant.....and not by just one Hooters Girl. The goal is to train our Hooters Girls such that at least 3 Hooters Girls greet every newly arriving guest. No matter if the Hooters Girl is putting in an order at a POS terminal, or carrying food, or behind the bar, or whatever. Every Hooters Girl should “chime in” and yell, “Hi!” or “Hello!” towards the arriving guest. As soon as a girl hears the first girl, she should shout out also. As a matter of fact, it’s almost like shouting “door!”, except it’s “Hi!” “Hello!”...and it’s a lot less annoying. (Sneaky, aren’t we???) And a little eye contact will help it even more. We must still make sure that at least one Hooters Girl picks up the guest and seats them at the best table in the house...hers. In addition, we use the E3 program, to make sure our Hooters Girls talk to Every Guest, Every Table, Every Day.

The Excellent Hooters managers have embraced the qualities of the 17 Principles of Success, by Napoleon Hill and W. Clement Stone, and reviewed from Bottom Line Personal at CMC University. While we realize that complete implementation of all of these principles is a very tall order, Excellent Managers at a minimum constantly attempt to stay on the path to reaching that goal of complete implementation. At a minimum all Excellent Managers understand and exhibit the behaviors of the attitudinal principles of Positive Mental Attitude. They also exhibit a Definiteness of Purpose in their actions as they manage.

In addition to the “17 Principles” mentioned above, Excellent Managers retain and practice as well as possible the guidelines presented from the Fred Pryor seminar on “How to Supervise People.” Excellent Managers have diagnosed their own strengths and weaknesses as managers, and constantly refer to resources such as this to straighten out inconsistent or weak performance in their specific weaker areas of performance. Furthermore, they recognize that they must manage in the ways described therein to progress and succeed within The Company.

Excellent Managers are able to grow themselves professionally and mentally without losing touch or the realization that the most important commitment to the restaurant business is managing the “nuts and bolts”. That is, the hands-on details--labor, food cost, controllables, driving the top line. They don’t lose sight of why they are trying to be better managers: to make more money, get it to the bottom line, and have more fun doing it! They balance their professional skepticism with their methods of re-affirmation caused by never being to busy for too long to keep from getting “hands-on” in the kitchen, or from keeping an eye on the floor. He knows that after a fair amount of planning, training, and discussion, it’s time to “get with the program, put your nose down, and grind out excellent results. Making that goal come to reality is a key to success....

Make sure you keep your mail-box (in-box) clean. Keep pertinent forms on clip boards and leave the office EVERY day with the office being in neat and organized order. If you go the extra mile a little bit EVERY DAY, then you won’t have to run a marathon later to stay in the race. And your assistants will be less likely to give up, because they’ll be held to a certain standard which you yourself uphold.

Be ready for business. Have plate set ups made in advance. Skip the plate, just lettuce/tomato/pickle set ups on a clean sheet pan. You can then place the entire ensemble on the plate. Plus they fit in the makeup refrigerator, too. Use line set up checklists, and thaw pull charts religiously. Double check employee schedules weekly. You as an excellent manager must motivate your employees to want them to work there. See the job, get your rap down when interviewing, orienting, and jumpstarting. Personnel motivation and charisma, energy, and integrity are KEY required attributes for a successful and excellent Hooters manager. In our particular company, none of our more successful managers have achieved success without these abilities or personality traits.

If adopting these aforementioned behaviors becomes a burning desire and goal for you, and you sincerely aspire to improve on these, then little by little, day by day, positive change will happen. You will feel more control and confidence, and less anxiety, and claustrophobia from feeling smothered by your work. Great managers don’t necessarily work a lot. They work smart. You have to manage with a purpose, and that purpose must be evidenced by notes, memos to your staff, motivational posters, and charts. To achieve success, you must pursue this with a conscious effort, persistence, and tenacity, until success becomes a habit. The excellent manager does not rationalize anything less than success as being acceptable.

These are programs which we use and can add 20% to your monthly bonus, or subtract up to 40% from it..

ϖ PROMO CHECK UP PROGRAM o As part of the aforementioned programs to increase our opportunities for success, the excellent manager exhorts his promo team to achieve 100% compliance and completion with the Promo Check Up. o The excellent managers also makes sure all managers use and post correctly to the Promo Declining Budget, to keep his promotion costs in check, and make sure he or she is getting productivity for promo dollars being spent on materials and promo labor.

ϖ CMC In Store Training Review o CMC uses the In Store Training Review, initiated by Hooters of America, Inc. and adopted by CMC. The excellent manager keeps his training materials up to date, stocked, and well organized.

ϖ Comment Card Response Program o In addition to the In Store Training Review and the Promo Check Up, the additional programs to go the extra mile towards excellent guest service are the Comment Card Response Program and the Mystery Shop Score averaging. For the Comment Card Response, the excellent manager understands how important comment cards are, and to have a card actually followed up on by the manager will surprise the guest in a potentially wonderful way. The excellent manager lets no dissatisfied guests remain dissatisfied or un-contacted.

❖ Mystery Shop Scores Program o As for the Mystery Shop scoring, since in 2001 it has an impact on the monthly bonus program for management, the excellent manager reinforces and reviews the shopper form with his front of house and back of house staff members, to make sure they are sensitive to what constitutes good service in the eyes of the shopper. Furthermore, the excellent managers ALWAYS reviews recent shops with his staff, looking for an opportunity to praise great performances, and to re-direct, re-train, or reprimand unacceptable results when noted.

As reiterated throughout this manifesto, the Excellent Manager understands that a cornerstone of the Hooters concept is the FUN atmosphere.. Remember F.A.T. Fun/Attitude/Teamwork. These principles are very well illustrated in the FISH tape, which is based on the employees of a Seattle fish market. From that tape come the same very true, very simple principles, which are absolutely required for success.
Play! Make Their Day! Be There! Choose Your Attitude!
The Excellent Manager understands that FUN flows from him or her…and it can also NOT FLOW from him or her, if he or she is not being excellent, and understanding and practicing the principles of the FISH tape. It is imperative that managers use tools such as this tape to convey the message of making Hooters THE fun place to be… for our employees AND our guests…

Excellent Managers understand that CHANGE is a constant in the hospitality industry. Positively and aggressively anticipating change and addressing changing needs effectively and with constant, consistent, and recurring execution of whatever is necessary to accomplish our goals. Excellent Managers remember to think through the consequences of future actions, and understand the paralysis of inaction or ambivalence. We know that we must out-compete our competition, every shift, every day, every week, every period, every season, every year. Excellent Managers know that someone out there will think that running restaurants is easy, or extremely profitable…and they maybe or maybe do not understand, the minutae of detail, and the most excellent state in which those details must be executed to survive and thrive in this hospitality world. So by investing in extra efforts every day, mining for new business or ensuring guest service is happening every day, Excellent Managers make sure the “cheese” (their guests and related sales, their employees and staffing levels and satisfaction) are sufficient.

Excellent Managers follow a “best methods” approach. That is, they always look for the performer with the best operations….the highest sales, the tightest costs, the best reviews, the cleanest operations…they find out what they are doing, confer with their cohorts, bosses, and subordinates, and find ways to implement whatever it takes to adopt and adapt to, when practical, those best methods, so that WE can be THE BEST.

Based on the metaphor from the movie Wizard of OZ, as illustrated in the OZ, Principles of Accountability book, we realize that as Excellent Managers, we are accountable to achieve results for our organization, as well as for ourselves. We understand that to achieve desired results, which for Cornett Hospitality are a 5% increase in sales, a 3% point increase in Controllable Profit, and 100% ACE (Amazing Customer Experiences), we must take Actions, which cause the results to happen. We must change the Experiences which have formed Beliefs that certain Actions will produce certain Results.. In order to do that, we will get feedback often, and make sure that we SEE the playing field of business clearly….we accept OWNERSHIP of the responsibility to produce the results. We will SOLVE any challenges which prevent us from achieving our desired result, and continuously ask ourselves “What Else Can I and We Do?” and we will DO it…whatever it takes to relentlessly pursue the actions necessary to achieve our goals.. By doing this, and achieving results, we will become truly Excellent.

One of the BEST ways the Excellent Manager can increase their sales is by increasing the revenue per guest that each Hooters Girl serves. Not many managers would look good in the Orange Shorts, so what the Excellent Manager does is KNOWS the concepts within the Renegade Service book, and uses this as a teaching tool EVERY shift. Also, the Excellent Manager examines results and communicates the best methods, and be performances from every Hooters Girl. The Excellent Manager recaps the change in the commonly known TIPS (to insure prompt service) to the Renegade Hooters Girl version of TIPS.. T – Treat Me Like a Regular I – Increase My Check P – Personalize My Service S – Stand Out

The Excellent Manager constantly reminds his or her Hooters Girl staff what is the difference between a “food fetcher” and a “Renegade Hooters Girl”. The Food Fetchers normally, serve food, know the menu well enough to ring in orders, work a floor section, let the hostess seat their guests, take orders, and are basically interchangeable cogs in the machine. The Renegade Hooters Girl CREATES the special type of experience the guest is seeking, knows the menu well enough to suggest the things the guest will love, and they MANAGE their sections, so IT works for THEM (makes it their business), have the Hooters Girl at the Door manage their wait lists of regulars and requests, make memories of the experience at Hooters for their guests, and are IRREPLACEABLE! By doing this the Excellent Manager can boost the guest check average for his or her unit by over $1 per cost, with consistent and immediate ownership of the methods of this concept.

These are some of the key character traits that that the successful managers in our company possess. Excellent managers exhibit these qualities in their daily behavior. Employees LIKE working with Excellent Managers, and RESPECT that the Excellent Manager is looking out for their best interests as well as the best interests of the business. Excellent Managers know that managing a restaurant is a challenging and invigorating task, and that this is not a career choice for the meek of spirit. Excellent Managers become proficient at the administrative tasks such as inventory, scheduling, and understanding completely all paperwork. Excellent Managers understand Microsoft Office and make sure their restaurant exceeds minimum standards set forth by health inspections or other compliance or safety inspections. Excellent Managers also focus on, talk about, cheer-lead and help their unit achieve sales increases, beating prior year sales. Excellent Managers do not sit idly by and hope good financial control happens. They measure, portion out, do spot checks, nightly inventories, to measure usages or to have efficient use of labor… Excellent Managers give constant attention to the mood and quality of staff, as well as the training and competency of existing staff. Our best managers treat their employees and their guests like they’ve known them all since grade school…realizing that maintaining relationships is job #1. Excellent Managers embrace best-method guidelines that are communicated to them formally and informally, by conference calls, meetings, memos and by just observing others with excellent operations. Excellent Managers possess the confidence that they can succeed and constantly reinforce and fortify themselves to remain confident…AND to have FUN while doing it. Excellent Managers make sure they keep their career at Hooters the MOST FUN career choice they could have made…And you, who read this, have the potential to be an Excellent Manager if you fully embrace the principles within this Manifesto.

Excellent Managers who succeed with Hooters and make tons of money managing Hooters, and who regard Hooters a career choice and not a job…understand to the core of their work being that the CORNERSTONES…what makes Hooters work or NOT work, if not given enough attention, are
We cannot succeed unless continuous and effective focus is given to each of these foundational principles.

It is our hope that by investing in you, and giving you our best efforts to prepare you to excel in the world of hospitality management, you will exceed your own, and our expectations to enrich all involved. Good Luck! Go for it! Rock on, Excellent Manager!

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