Level-headed, business-minded entrepreneurs who want to succeed in the restaurant business today, should read Restaurant Success by the Numbers.
For more than 20 years I’ve been married to a (successful but now retired) chef and restaurateur, and I can confidently say that if more owners paid attention to all the important factors in this book, more restaurants would succeed.
Roger Fields’ book is heavy on reality.
The truth is, the restaurant business is fun (if you know what you’re doing). It can also be profitable. It’s always demanding and it can be disastrous. This book offers practical information to help “realistic dreamers” plan, finance, open and successfully bring their dream to fruition.
The author claims that the “book is not only instructional and informative, it’s also entertaining. It’s not just for people who have dreams of owning their own restaurant;” he says, “it’s also for people who simply want the inside scoop on what it really takes to plan, design, staff, open and run a successful restaurant” (p xvi).
Restaurant Success By The Numbers is an Excellent book:
- It has great instruction and information;
- gives actual inside scoop;
- gives thorough and accurate coverage of all aspects necessary for success;
- it’s logically organized;
- and it applies to all restaurant concepts, including drive-through or eat-in fast food, takeout-and-delivery, food trucks, wait-staffed casual or fine dining, soup-and-sandwich lunch counters, diners, or bakeries.
It is, however, not entertaining. Why should it be? (Maybe the publisher’s marketing team came up with that “also entertaining” nonsense?)
There are times in life when we need to put aside our desire to be entertained, and do thorough good work. Opening and managing a restaurant is one of those times, unless you have oodles of money to fritter away.
If this book is too boring for you to read from cover to cover; then don’t open a restaurant! Running a restaurant includes boring stuff like budgeting, costing, excessive planning, procuring business and tax licenses, dealing with city, state, and federal bureaucracy, and there’s lots of math involved. All that stuff is crucial for long-term success.
There’s valuable, accurate information here, and the cover design is clever without being distracting or cutesy, but I do wish that Mr. Fields had given specific references for the facts and figures he cites in the introduction. It would have made his argument (that the restaurant business has a bright and profitable future) much stronger.
And guess what? Roger Fields is one author who managed to land a traditional publishing contract without playing the fame game. No blog, no Goodreads or Amazon author page. No Facebook page; no Twitter account. What’s up with that?
So when are you going to open your restaurant? or
Do you think the notion that we have to be “also entertained” is sometimes inappropriate? or
Maybe everything everybody is saying about how to land a traditional publishing contract is hogwash?
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.