4 Mistakes to Avoid when Managing a Bar

    There’s no question that the bar and restaurant business is risky. With approximately 60 percent of all new establishments going under in the first 12 months, you have to know what your doing and have a plan to be successful.

    As a bar manager, it is your job to “call the shots” on all aspects of the bar’s operations. While this is hard work you have to remain diligent. Overlooking a seemingly simple thing, and you may face serious consequences.

    The good news is, there are some mistakes that are more common than others. Getting to know what these mistakes are can help you avoid making them and give your bar the best chance of success.

    1. Failure to Enforce Laws and Regulations

    Believe it or not, this is actually a huge issue. If you don’t stay on top of your staff, they may become more relaxed when it comes to checking your customer’s identification. If this happens, and you serve to someone underage, you may face fines, legal liability and more.

    If you want a simple way to avoid this problem, utilize an ID scanner age verification system. This will let you know instantly if the person you are serving is of legal age.

    1. Improper Management of Your Staff

    The success of your bar is on your shoulders, but it’s also on the shoulders of your staff. You can’t run a successful bar without them.

    This means that you have to take initiative to ensure the following:

    • Each staff member is properly trained in all aspects of bar operation
    • That you have set clear goals and expectations
    • That you have not been unorganized or irresponsible when it comes to scheduling
    • Not ignoring internal problems
    • Always encouraging clear and honest communication

    By keeping this information in mind, you can ensure your staff is properly trained and they know what to do and when to do it.

    1. Not Keeping Up with Industry Trends

    Do you know what is popular in your industry right now? Do you know some of the hottest new cocktails that have been created?

    A huge management mistake is if you lose touch with the most current industry trends. If this happens, you may automatically lose business. After all, people want to try what they have heard about on social media. If you fail to keep up, then your customers are going to go elsewhere to find what they want.

    A great way to stay updated is by visiting online forums, following trends on social media and listen to what your customers are saying.

    1. Not Paying Attention to Your Inventory

    You need to count your inventory, order alcohol and calculate your pour cost to fully understand what you need and what’s popular. As the manager, you need to develop a solid strategy for each part of your inventory process. If you fail to do this, then your bar and profits are going to suffer.

    Some of the most crucial elements to keep in mind when it comes to inventory management include:

    • Organized invoicing and fast ordering
    • Efficient and accurate usage counts
    • Minimizing levels of sitting inventory
    • Setting accurate pars
    • Constant monitoring of your pour costs
    • Lowering variance
    • Using a POS system to monitor sales and your profits

    If you fail to control these things, then your variance may grow to unhealthy levels and your bar business will suffer.

    If you want to run a successful bar, then you have to avoid these common mistakes. Knowing what they are is half the battle. Now it is up to you to implement strategies that will help you avoid making a huge mistake.


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