Recently, Nation’s Restaurant News shared a COVID-19 Year in Review article, and specifically focused on the consequences to the restaurant and hospitality industries. It is worth a read for all restaurant owners and managers as it is important to have a clear, realistic picture of the state of the industry.
That said, the article also centered around the hope for these industries in 2021, noting the recovery plans and high anticipation for bounce-back. For example, while we can’t expect a full recovery from the pandemic in 2021 alone, experts are predicting more than a 10% increase in restaurant sales overall—good news for those restaurants who are sustaining their business post-restrictions.
There is a call to manage expectations and shift thinking. Restaurants should not anticipate returning to the “old normal” rather face-forward to what comes next, setting new standards that will become a new foundation for the industry. It is challenging, but there are also opportunities to be explored.
“We don’t expect a return to the old normal,” said Wyman Roberts, CEO of Brinker International, parent to the Chili’s Grill & Bar chain and Maggiano’s Little Italy. Earlier this year, he said “2020 fundamentally changed us as consumers. We were forced to use technology to enjoy our favorite restaurants in new ways like third-party delivery, curbside takeout, QR code menus and mobile payment.”
At National Restaurant Consultants, we have encouraged our clients to embrace the hope ahead. With more support dollars rolling out for the consumer and restaurant businesses, and an overall embracing of new systems and technologies, our consultants see opportunities and solutions for food service operators and restaurants in particular in the months ahead.
Richard Weil, owner of NRC notes, “By all indications we are on the right side of the mountain coming down hill, and now, more than ever, is the time for a fresh set of eyes and ears looking at your business. Our consultants have a mindset for guest relations and must-have operational changes to make sure your business is not only relevant in the new normal, but thrives.”
As your restaurant is working toward post-pandemic recovery, consider signing up for our re-opening plan, and contact a member of our professional and experienced consultant team to find solutions that work for your business.