restaurant manager training
by Laura-Andreea Voicu

Employee training and development is a hot topic for restaurants. Employee turnover is already high in hospitality industries and the cost of recruiting new staff is a serious bank-breaker. So, investing in employee development seems like a viable retention strategy.

However, employee development is not limited to junior employees. Managers have a broader range of responsibilities and their inefficiency means an epidemic throughout the restaurant.

So, manager training is an indispensable part of an efficient restaurant. In this article, we’ll explain why you should invest in restaurant manager training and how it should be done for maximum productivity.

What Is Restaurant Manager Training?

There are many reasons why you should consider training your restaurant managers.

Restaurant managers are responsible for various processes in a restaurant such as operation management, customer service, employee management, supply chain & procurement, marketing and PR, sales and finances, customer retention, safety issues, etc.

Inefficient management means widespread trouble throughout the restaurant.

restaurant manager

Source: Shutterstock

9 out of 10 restaurant managers start their career at an entry-level position. And although throughout the years they’ve acquired a lot of experience, they need to be properly trained for a management position.

Even if they’re already trained, to keep them abreast of the new technologies and methodologies, you need to invest in suitable restaurant manager training.

A training program for restaurant managers educates managers about improving operations and the guest experience. These programs can focus on a variety of topics related to their everyday tasks:

  • Staff operations supervision & optimization
  • Hiring & training of the restaurant staff
  • Customer excellence
  • Customer feedback management
  • Smart inventory control
  • Food safety
  • Allergy & food tolerance
  • Workplace safety
  • Equipment training
  • Marketing and promotions
  • Financial management

All restaurants should continuously invest in improving these management skills. Technical training helps restaurants optimize operations and improve the quality of their service.

And it’s smart to fuse technical training with soft skill development programs. Joining leadership and communication training programs allows managers to build strong relationships with their staff and customers.

These soft skill enhancement programs reshape managers’ approach to personnel management and customer care.

Managers develop problem-solving and effective communication skills, and cultural competence. These competencies enable them to create a spirited and safe environment that guests and personnel feel comfortable in.

How to Create a Restaurant Management Training Program from Scratch

So, how to create a stellar restaurant manager training program that will take your restaurant to the next level?

Step 1: Defining goals, resources, and KPIs

The first step of any training program is creating a plan. A plan that clarifies:

  • What are the objectives of the program
  • Which resources are available and how to allocate them
  • What metrics are defined to measure attendees’ progress and the program’s success

Training objectives

To develop a successful training program, you need to set your goals straight from the beginning.

First off, you want to identify the objectives you want to achieve by the end of this program.

A restaurant manager training program can focus on guest experience, marketing, profit maximization, reducing employee turnover, project management, and more. What to prioritize depends on your restaurant’s strengths and weaknesses.

If, for instance, you haven’t tapped into the online market, the program can include digital marketing courses.

Or, say that your high employee turnover rate is not manageable anymore. This poses an even greater risk than not having an online presence. In this case, the agenda can focus on maintaining high staff morale.


Restaurant manager training is largely theoretical. Once you short-list the most important short and long-term objectives, you’ll see that some of them are definitely low-hanging fruits. You don’t need painfully expensive course material or expert trainers.

There are tons of online courses in all areas related to a restaurant manager’s day-to-day tasks and leadership skills. You can look up online courses on the topics you’re interested in.

You’ll see that there’s one for every budget and even free ones! You can also hire expert coaching to up your game if you have the budget for it. Professional training can certainly make a difference.

The main resource that needs detailed planning is the work hours. You need to properly assess the time it will take to complete the program. When doing this, you should also consider the opportunity cost.

Restaurant managers often have busy schedules, so you don’t want to devote long hours to training. Using a planner app pays off double as it increases the organizational skill for effective team planning and finding the time in your schedule training.

But you can always set your own pace. There’s no need to add another level of stress in an already fast-paced environment. If your restaurant is always packed, you can set a flexible schedule to avoid burnout.


Before training starts, you should also think about how to measure your progress. If your main goal is to increase profits, you can set monthly, quarterly, or yearly target profits. If you have a more abstract goal, measuring can be a bit more tricky.

Say, for instance, your goal is to reduce your staff’s stress levels for higher productivity and lower turnover rates. The training would ideally be on effective communication and personnel management strategies. But it won’t be so easy to measure stress levels once you complete the program.

What you can do is survey your staff or arrange 1-1 sessions to collect verbal feedback. Verbal feedback can give you clues about your staff’s happiness and work-related stress levels. Naturally, you’ll also need to collect pre-training data to make a comparison.

Note that verbal data might be slightly biased, as some staff members may refrain from speaking their minds. If you think that’s the case for the majority of your staff, you can also work on improving transparency in your workplace.

An OKR software platform can make the process of tracking your key goals and objectives and soliciting feedback from employees very easy.

Step 2: Incorporating hospitality industry technology

Restaurants, like the rest of the hospitality industry, are relatively late to digitalization. But technology has slowly infiltrated the restaurant industry too.

Deloitte’s research reveals that customers expect frictionless digital experiences from restaurants.

Today’s restaurant managers need some level of tech literacy to offer a good guest experience. They must be familiar with contactless/digital payment, online ordering, and table booking systems.

Get a free online ordering system that requires no tech knowledge Start accepting orders online on your smartphone in minutes

And they should also know about digital systems that streamline back-of-house operations. Examples are profit and loss reporting, pricing, invoicing, and inventory monitoring tools.

Some of these tools come with onboarding sessions that teach you about their functions and controls. If you’re new to these technologies, you can opt for software and hardware that offer good onboarding and customer service.

For example, you can enable online ordering for your restaurant and teach your restaurant manager how to start accepting orders online in minutes using GloriaFood. No prior tech knowledge required. Here’s how:

And technology also makes training in general convenient. Online courses, learning management systems, video conferencing tools, task management software, customer relationship management tools, and many other technologies make learning easier than ever. You can support your training program with a functional and affordable tech stack.

Step 3: Investing continuously in soft-skills training

Any seasoned restaurant manager knows that a huge part of the job is making sure the employees are happy and doing their jobs well. This is where soft skills come into play.

Soft skills help managers keep their employees happy. And they have a great deal of impact on a restaurant’s success. When restaurant managers keep their personnel happy and engaged, it improves employee productivity, quality of service, and customer experience.

Various soft skills are increasingly sought after in the restaurant industry:

  • Know-how of effective communication
  • Maintaining a positive attitude
  • Conflict management and problem-solving skills
  • Stress-coping skills—which are necessary in the often chaotic restaurant environment
  • Workplace ethics and cultural competence
  • Teamwork

These skills help restaurant managers communicate effectively to avoid misunderstandings and conflict. Managers learn to tackle issues with transparency, respect, and a positive attitude. This kind of leadership motivates employees to perform better, which translates into greater service quality.

These days, managers also need to invest in gaining cultural awareness and upholding workplace ethics. Zoomers will soon constitute the majority of the workforce and global consumers, and their approach to these matters is pretty straightforward: they demand respect, and rightly so.

Training for gaining cultural awareness brings managers closer to offering a top-notch experience to guests from different backgrounds. A better understanding of cultural differences can help restaurants attract tourists, business people, and expats in the town.

Managers can find inspiration in these differences and encourage menu improvs. These new products can be tested during service hours, or in pop-up kitchen events around the neighborhood.


Employee training is an indispensable process in any successful restaurant. However, it’s not limited to the staff. Managers have a key role in the success of any operations in a restaurant. So, their training should be at the forefront of any employee development program.

To create the right restaurant manager training program, a 3-step process is recommended in this article:

  1. Defining key goals, resources, and KPIs
  2. Using the right tech stack
  3. Investing in soft skills development

This article is a guest post.

photo of GloriaFood blog writer Laura-Andreea Voicu
Laura-Andreea Voicu

Laura-Andreea Voicu is an experienced content writer with a knack for marketing and SEO. She creates guides and resources designed to help restaurants grow their presence online and boost sales.

She has been featured on the Oracle Food and Beverage Blog and wrote for Search Engine Journal, Clutch, Sender, Venngage, Quickbooks, and many more.

Find me on LinkedIn.