Three must-do online courses to prepare staff for re-opening
By Duncan Campbell
May 26th, 2020
Operationally, are you ready to face a post-lockdown world? What should hospitality operators be doing to ensure your biggest assets – your people – are ready to meet guest needs, while maximising revenue for your business?

Whether you manage a hotel, cocktail bar, restaurant, pub or club – there is no doubt that the hospitality and club industry will be re-opening with restrictions set by government – be it operating hours, social distancing, number of patrons allowed on your premises, drinks needing to be served with food, or perhaps even takeaway only for now.

So, how are you preparing your staff to reopen with a bang?

  • Have you shared insights on the financial wellbeing of the business?
  • Have you incentivised upselling and maximising each order, while respecting responsible service?
  • Do they understand how to communicate your latest operating procedures to your guests?

Speaking of guests –

  • Are you communicating clearly your expectations of them when dining with you?
  • Are you setting a minimum spend per head, without exception?
  • Do they understand the important role they play in (1) supporting your business, and (2) ensuring the safety of themselves and hospitality workers?

In the coming days we're going to add a guide to operational expectations for hospitality businesses, and share our thoughts on how to communicate clearly with guests to ensure they play ball. In the meantime, here's a thought-provoking playbook by Black Sheep Restaurants in Hong Kong on re-opening.

There is no denying it, venues can't thrive with many of the restrictions imposed for re-opening. From physical distancing to one person in-and-out or shifting square metre rules, making money let alone offering hospitality will be hard.

But what you can do is take necessary steps to maximise the potential revenue in any given day – and we're here to help. At Small Batch Learning, we've curated three free online courses that we think should be non-negotiable for your team prior to re-opening your doors. We can also get you set up with your very own free training platform, and you can be inviting your team to take this training in under half an hour.

And no, we're not asking you to assign your team a 20-minute tutorial on washing their hands. We pride ourselves in developing training content that respects the time and intelligence of the learner. It is written to answer the "why" behind operational decisions, because knowledge retention happens best when the why comes before the what.

So, here's a quick overview of the three courses – they are packaged up in a training plan and ready to be assigned to your team.

1. Hygiene & safety: 35 mins.

We don't offer compliance training, so this isn’t a health & safety certificate issued by your state government. Instead, this hygiene course focuses on practical information that might go generally unnoticed, or under the radar of what generally constitutes "cleanliness".

With guests on hyper-alert, it's not just mess that may translate to "unhygienic" in their minds. It's also any unnecessary contact or lax hygiene practices that they consider an unacceptable virus risk. So, how will you adjust your standard operating procedures, particularly around bar and table service, and how will your team play their part in alleviating concerns – because a guest is unlikely to return to a venue that they've deemed unsanitary. And by the way, now might be the time to appoint a hygiene monitor (for small businesses), or a chief health officer (for large organizations).

2. Upselling & maximising revenue: 40 mins.

Here's the equation: if revenue < cost of running your business, “you’re gonna have a bad time”. How synched is your team to the realities your venue is facing, and what can they do to ensure operations are as close to financially viable as possible?

The time for action is now, so this course specifically highlights the role your employees play in helping your business stay afloat by training on maximizing revenue potential using simple selling strategies. Focused on the “why” and “how”, we highlight the crucial role your team play in the financial health of the business, and why they should care.

3. Healthy Hospo Level 1: 60 mins.

We partnered with Healthy Hospo, the industry's first not-for-profit tackling health in hospitality, to develop a course focused on supporting your team’s mental wellbeing, covering: isolation & cabin fever, sleep, diet, stress, burnout and a healthy workplace.

Often left unspoken, this course digs into the hard truths around mental health in hospitality, and what your team can do to help build a healthier life in our industry.

To find out more about training your hospitality (or retail) teams on Small Batch Learning, contact us here.