I have been a AM, KM and now I am working on AGM for Red Robin.  I am about to be acting GM for 2 quarters.  I have worked every position in the restaurant business sans GM.  

I want to know what advice you would give a new GM.

Even if it is basic stuff, sometimes basic is the best.  

What can I do to make us the best restaurant in town while hitting the numbers?  

Commence the advice!

Thanks in advance. 

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1. Don't hire girls just because they're smoking hot. Hire ones that are smoking hot and actually qualified.

2. Do not, ever, ever, ever flirt with the members of the wait staff. Arms length only. 

3. Have your wine supplier give your wait staff a primer on the wines you serve. He'll be glad to do it because the better your wait staff is with the wine, the more wine you sell. The more wine you sell, the more wine you purchase from your wine wholesaler. 

4. Conduct yourself at all times like your RM is standing right behind you. If you wouldn't want your boss to hear you say it, don't say it. If you wouldn't want him to see you do it, don't do it.

5. cleanliness, cleanliness, cleanliness.

6. As soon as you are promoted, one of your Male employees will test the fences with you. Shit-can his ass immediately.

7. Don't reinvent the wheel. Every time a guy gets a promotion to GM, he tries to be that new guy who is going to set the world on fire with how he runs his restaurant. 99.99999 percent of the time, he royally screws it up. His first mistake is usually to tell all his employees how he is going to set the world of restaurateurs on fire. Don't try to reinvent the wheel, just do it like they taught you to do it.

Well said, the only thing I would add is show up 15 min ahead when you are expected and be sure problems are done before you leave. 

Also remember the between and issue and a problem.

An issue is a difference of perspective. Neither view is particularly correct or wrong.  This can be how things are accomplished.  As long as the tasks are accomplished don't stress the difference of perspective. 

A problem is something is broken or a legal requirement.

I'm no expert.  But:  see that the routine makes sense, and see that it doesn't change that often.  That way you avoid people not getting the right order, or on time, or done right.  Seems that when the staff struggle with a new way of doing things, that's when things don't work.

As a guy who has been an employee under just about every boss there has ever been (I'm now in-between jobs, but I'll be a teacher shortly!), I can tell you that your employees appreciate a sense of community.

The boss who says, "I don't ask you to do anything I wouldn't do!" is the same boss that does little more than stand there and yell. You're in it together, so make sure you're as useful to your employees as they are to you.

Great point!  I know of a General Manger of a expensive resort who will jump on the reservation phones or handle front desk check-in's if the base line crew needs the help.  There are some jobs she is not qualified to do but for rest she jumps in and helps when they are swamped in addition to everything else she does.  The staff as a lot of respect for her and pull their weight for her. 

All of the previous comments are great advice.  I'd add, Don't just tell people what to do and how to do it.  Show them why to what in what way.  Help people understand how what they do and how they do it affects everyone else for good or ill.  This engages people's higher-order thinking.  Some employees are in fact lazy idiots, but mostly that's because that's all that's asked of them.  If you give them not just their instructions, but show them how it all fits together, they can start to self-manage.  Some won't, so you get rid of them and go through people until you find the ones who will.  The good ones will come to you,, once they understand, with ideas to improve processes, that you might not have thought of.

Then a manager can start handing off responsibilities.  You continually replace yourself, work yourself out of a job, and you yourself can take on more.  Why hire people if you have to follow them around to tell them what to do anyway?  You're hiring the whole person, including their mind, for an agreed-upon fee. Use it, and pay for it.  

And while surrounding yourself with worthwhile people, show them by actions that you appreciate them and like having them around, and that they are good for the overall business.  A good way to do this is to do the job everybody hates, once in a while.  Jump in and help your people without getting in their way.  You can't fake any of this; it has to be genuine.  If you can't muster the feeling to do this, you're probably in the wrong line of work. 

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