Resources For Emplyee Management

I need some book, website, magazine article, etc. recommendations to help me rethink my employee management.

I’ve been in an ownership and/or management position for the last 12 years (and I’m only 33). Up until about 5 months ago, I was able to put together some great teams and use my theories about pairing personalities on shifts to get some great results. I don’t know what’s changed lately, but I’m having some really rough times with employees.

Today was my first day off in 47 days, although, that includes some shorter 4 or 5 hours shifts. But, all are shifts in the kitchen or front of house. Worked a short yesterday morning, went to a fashion show my wife was modeling in (poor me, right?) then went out of town to see a band that are friends of mine. Got home at 4 a.m., slept in until 10:00 a.m. and went to pick up my 3 and 1 year old kids at my mothers house. Hang out with them all afternoon, wife get’s home from work and we lay in the bedroom with our daughter watching some TV. Sure as s**t, my phone starts blowing up 15 minutes after the shift change. Cashier hasn’t shown up, day cashier can’t get her to answer phone, can’t get anyone else to come in. We have a small staff, 8-10 people with 3 former employees who are happy to come in and help when needed. Nobody can/will come in, so I go in and work a brutal dinner rush. Call absent cashier after the rush and leave message explaining terms of her termination and when she can pick up her final check. She calls back 2 minutes later, without having listened to the message and says “oh, I didn’t know I was supposed to work”.

I think I’ve become soft, or something. I’m having problems with tardiness, prep work, cleaning and just overall work ethic that I’ve never had in the past. Most of my staff are college students and I try to make it a job that helps them achieve their goals. My offer of employment always comes with the statement that I expect their families to be the first priority, school their second priority and working for me to be their third priority. It ultimately comes down to me, so I need to get a new game plan.