Just lost a manager

Yesterday one of our managers quit…He was actually one of the only people we trusted…How do you guys find people who you trust in a cash business like we all have?

I feel your pain. Yesterday my kitchen manager was POACHED by the previous owner of my place. He is opening a replica of his old place but high end prices and 100 different wines, 4 blocks from me in the basement of an unknown deserted strip mall.

I was expecting the guy to show up and he just never called or came in. I had to go to his home to find him and get the story.
But on the flip side he was my most expensive employee and i will save some $$$$ now, and as for the previous owner KARMA is a brut.

I go with my instincts on hiring. I have been wrong before but I have also made bad advertising deicisions that wasted even more money. the most important thing to me on the cash control is systems combined with regular checking. Take good care of good employees and make sure they benefit when things are going well.

Pakula… didn’t you have a non-compete in your contract? Or has it expired?

If you were referring to me, yes we had a no compete for the name and I bought the rights to all recipes. But I am not really concerned. It is a matter of bad person, bad location, bad food. It has been for sale for years and he has tried to revamp it with as many different formats. Also we have an over abundance of high end places in our resort community. This might end up benefiting me.

Pakula… from what I have learned its one of those things that is gonna happen to almost everyone at some point. when I Bought this place I knew nothing and relied totally on the employees I have since crammed to learn everything I can. It still stings when someone jumps ship. Try and get as much feedback as you can from this person to find out why they decided to leave. Use that for what you think its worth and start the new search, you might end up in a better situation. FWIW :smiley:

It stinks when a trusted, and good, employee leaves; but I always look at it as one step backwards, two steps forward. In this business, people have to leave or they end up making more than what the market warrants. Nobody should be so important to your business that they can’t be replaced. You don’t want to be in that position. If you can get the same performance from someone else and save $2 an hour doing it (just for example), you can put $4000 back in your pocket at the end of the year (assuming a 40 hour week). The numbers are even greater for upper level employees such as managers. Just keep hiring, training and developing your people and expect them to be leaving at some point, and you will be ready for the next one to leave. Good luck to you.

I know how you feel.

Last November my manager gave me same day notice of leaving (Friday morning !!! and knowing we were short for the weekend). I promoted my 18 year old Trainee Manager and he was doing agood job until he unexpectedly gave me 2 weeks notice. He left to chase the big money in the mining industry - gets $1200 per week after tax.

Just prior to the young manager leaving a 19 year old girl who previously worked for me(she had to return to UK for family reasons) returned to Australia looking for a jo. She was good at her job and knew our business so I had no hesitation in taking her back. Around the same time my daughter started to work for me and she acted as manager allowing me a couple of days off. But now she is set t fly the coop in a couple of weeks to go to the US (Camp America counsellor) and then travel to UK and Europe.

Now I’m looking for a manager again. The 19 year old put her hand up for the job and I did a full on interview with her and she came up trumps. For her age she shows a lot of maturity and leadership qualities and over the past few months working with my daughter has blossomed. They get on well and my daughter is extraverted and knowledgeable which brushed on to the soon to be manager. Over the past 2 months I had given her added responsibilities and she did these well incuding staff direction etc.

Hopefully she will stay for a while and grow into the business as a compentent manager.

Now I am looking for an assistant manager to fill her spot, but with our 3% unemployment I think it may be a long and hard road for a while.

It’s hard finding the “right” person and someone you feel you can trust to run your investment and do all the right things and the right thing by you, including being honest wuth financials.

Nineteen is young to run a business but then again ost of the managers in Domino’s, PH, MacDonalds etc are young people so hopefully mine will work out for me.

It’s hard to find staff but even harder to find the “right” one.


Almost one year ago, I lost the only protege I’ve ever had in nearly 14 years in the pizza business. He had been with me almost 5 years, was 26 years old, and knew (or so I believed at the time) as much as I did. He faithfully operated my main location while I wasted time and money trying to bring a 2nd location online for his eventual investment. Having relocated the 2nd location after 3 years, I had the “new” location up and running and profitable. Within 4 months of turning it over (still no investment on his part), he lost interest and eventually, after a mild confrontation over his neglect (something which I would never have dreamed of before), he considered, gave notice, and walked away.

He was very loyal and highly paid.

I have been running myself ragged keeping two stores up using essentially an assistant in each store (both 19 years old), until the franchise program is finished and I can sell the new location (hopefully within a month or two).

What have I learned?

  1. The only indispensable person in my operation is me.
  2. Any manager, unless he/she has investment , is just 2 weeks away (or less) from leaving.
  3. I will NEVER be in a position ever again, if at all possible, where I do not have the leverage of termination at my disposal. (Sounds cold, but I must be able and available to do their job if and when it becomes necessary.)
  4. There are limits to how much any employee should earn (and a manager is ultimately just another employee)
  5. Always keep a farm team available and keep a sharp eye out for potential replacements.

All that being said, we must be willing to love and trust (but verify) again as there are always great people out there looking for opportunities to excel. Bottom line is that all managers in our line of work are seldom going to last more than 1-2 years IMHO before they move on to something else.

I feel and have felt your pain. Look within your organization first. I’m always amazed at how people step up once the leader vacates. Changes the dynamics completely.