How would you build a Strong Restaurant Culture

November 24, 2019


Building a strong culture is one of the hardest things a restaurant leader can do. It is easier said than done. Building a strong Culture an active process that has a significant influence on employee turnover and most importantly, on the bottom line. It is what makes you stand in the competition with other competitors. They can imitate your Menus, your recipes, your process, and your ingredients, but they can never imitate your Culture.

Follow our list to know how you would build a strong restaurant culture.

1. Identify your Core Values in Advance:

Think of your core values as the compass of your business. They form an important part of the hiring and firing policy. This is to say that your core values can guide all your business decisions, concerning hiring, menu adjustments, marketing, and management style. When hiring your staff, these values are what you look for in your job applicants and they drive your restaurant culture, not skillsets.

Values define what you want to encourage in your team and show to your customers. Accordingly, you must be able to identify these values in advance to determine your own company culture.

Start by making a list of the values you want to have in your restaurant.

The list might include:

  • Community
  • Excellence
  • Respect
  • Authenticity
  • Supporting the local economy
  • Sustainability
  • Honesty
  • Integrity
  • Creativity
  • Charity/volunteerism
  • Dependability
  • Adaptability
  • Hospitality
  • Teamwork
  • Quality
  • Consistency
  • Credibility
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Openness
  • Initiative

Once you have made the list of values, review the list and start pointing out the values that influence you. Your list shall end up with almost 10 values. Then, spend some time to decide what values relate to your vision of your business, and what are irrelevant to delete them.

When the list is ready, start working to create processes and protocols that inform these values so that management and staff in both front-of-house, back-of-house use them to guide their actions and overall workplace behavior.

Communicate these values to your team. Schedule several meetings to explain to your team what the values are and why you chose them.

Remind your team of your core values every at the chance you get such as staff training, job descriptions, or pre-shift meetings.

Ensure that your employees know that their opinions are important. Encourage them to come to you with questions and feedback on these values. Try to adjust any value that may get negative feedback and communicate these adjustments openly to your staff.


2. Learn from Experiences:

On one hand, you can learn from your own mistakes that you have made previously to avoid them. On the other hand, you may reuse the things that have worked in the past, which helped you promote employee unity and company culture. Decide how to use those principles now. Drop or modify any principle that was not very helpful to be in the right place.

If you are new to this, take advantage of the experience gained in other jobs or departments, as well as the resources of those who have been in it for a longer period.

Finally, ask your customers for feedback about their experience in your restaurant. Not to mention that you shall reward staff members who consistently deliver great experiences.


3. Lead by Example to Engage Employees:

To make sure that your employees embrace your restaurant culture you cannot just tell them what you want them to do. Alternatively, you need to lead by example and to show them in your actions.

Culture needs to engage employees. Restaurant managers have to do all they can to retain and motivate their staff. A strong culture has the ability to do this better than free food and other common privileges. This is because leaders can use restaurant culture to connect employees to higher purposes and to each other.


4. Consider these aspects of restaurant design to create a strong culture:

·Color Scheme:

You need to choose the right color schemes for your restaurant design that defines your theme. Maintain the same color scheme throughout the restaurant from your walls to your furniture so that the customers would not be confused with too many ideas.

Above all, colors play a great role in psychology. Every color evokes different emotions. Therefore, if you run a fine dining restaurant, avoid using busy and energetic colors like red or yellow. Whereas these colors are a great idea for a fast-food service. Thus, ensure the consistency of your theme, the form of restaurant, and color scheme.

·Seating and furniture:

To have a true representation of the local culture, consider sourcing materials native to a particular region. If your value is authenticity, then choose furniture with intricate carvings from local artists.

Design the seating plan with the appropriate furniture according to different eating traditions in your culture. Some customers prefer sitting on low seating, with plush mattresses and couches, while others usually enjoy outdoor seating, featuring handcrafted wooden chairs.

·Kitchen Design:

Pick the forms of cutlery, utensils, and cooking processes that suites your restaurant culture. Your kitchen design must reflect the culture. Equip your kitchen with the best of tools and equipment, to cater to the different cooking processes used in a particular culture.

·Serving Utensils:

Any culture has a different eating style and Materials of serving utensils can effectively highlight the aspects of a particular culture. Try choosing the cutlery and serving dishes that infuse your restaurant culture.


Building a restaurant’s culture can be a tough process. Nevertheless, with the right leadership and management skills, you can do it. Eventually, you will find that improving your restaurant’s culture benefits the whole of your staff as well as your customers.