BAR-NIGHTCLUB MANAGEMENT

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BAR-NIGHTCLUB MANAGEMENT

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BAR-NIGHTCLUB MANAGEMENT
 
 The Bar-Nightclub Management Challenge is one that is both a day and a nightly adventure.
  From General Managers faced with Owners who refuse to embrace change,
  to Owners who instruct General Managers who refuse to implement their
  Marching Orders.
  It's a never ending struggle. The longer a person owns a bar the more set in their ways they become and are very unwilling nor receptive to change. For some strange reason only they can justify, they would rather suffer and sink, then soar and succeed. They are very slow to act, which ultimately causes their demise. A beautiful upscale restaurant/lounge with a great crowd recently closed after a year of packed nights, not because of the format, but behind the scenes the owner, the management were overspending, not paying attention to food costs or liquor costs, hiring the wrong staff, putting their establishment's name in every ad that they were approached to take, so no matter how many nights they were packed, they could not keep up with their out of control lack of financial oversight. There is a discipline that is demanded in this industry in order to have long term success. When ego and arrogance dominate the Ownership/Management, do not expect a long life span for any bar, club, sports bar, restaurant/club, lounge. Ramada Inns and Holiday Inns are losing millions of dollars from their lounges/bars because they have no consistency of any kind.
They operate their liquor businesses like a step child, instead of embracing the revenue source, the local lure, the guest income, they ignore it, choosing to let it linger and languish. In this economy, every single avenue of income that you can derive cash flow from must be addressed, expanded on, and offered. But poor Bar-Nightclub Management is the reason why often, so many places go under, go out and go bye bye.  
 
WORSE CASE OF BAR/CLUB MANAGEMENT/OWNERSHIP I HAVE EVER HEARD:
 
Hey Rich,

 
I've got a bit of a horror story for you.

 
I'm a Disc Jockey and about a year ago I had a great dance night with great customers of good middle class people who came out, drank well and danced all night to my pop based music format.  I quit when management wanted me to switch to hip hop.
A year and a half later the club is left with this nightmare:

 
-thugs every night of the week
-$60,000 of new debt
-bartender tips UP, revenue DOWN 
-graffiti\profanity all over the restrooms
-broken sound system
-broken lights
-broken projector 
-dead weekend nights
-dead week nights
-bartenders serving free drinks
-bartenders stealing cash from the bar
-weekend drink specials that nobody knew about and brought in nobody
-wrecked decor
-same bartenders
-same management
-same drunks

 
They told me before I quit that all we have to do is change my pop format over to hip hop and they would "double" their revenue - I've been through this before Rich, it's never worked and has never brought in loyal customers who spend real money.  I DJ'ed at this club for over 3 years, keeping up with lights and sound, doing 100% of the promoting myself, making sure to attract good quality people and working with the bouncer to throw out the scum.

 
It was not long after I quit when I realized what was really going on.  These bartenders didn't like me because I was throwing out their buddies (thugs).  The owner\manager didn't like me because she was also friends with these people and continued to let them back in.  These people were so high on their own ideology of discounting drinks and that switching to rap music on weekends was really going to maximize profits.  Seriously.

 
It was all about keeping the party going for them - keeping free drinks in their buddies hands so the bartenders can keep getting their tips from the same 5 or 6 people who ended up being their only "loyal customers"....ummm, I wonder why??  

 
To me, the most embarrassing part is that this is a venue with crazy low overhead and in a prime location right in the middle of the madness in a major metropolitan area of over 3 million people and tons of foot traffic.  How could you go wrong?  Well, they have NEVER had a game plan - never wanted a WOW factor, never once planned for big events (Halloween, New Years, Etc).  All of our "meetings" were centered around 'the bar' and 'drinking' with no sight of what we can do to make a better experience for our customers or how to capitalize on our strengths and improve our weaknesses.

 
Even in a down economy, all of the bars and restaurants in this neighborhood are doing record numbers except this one.  They wanting me to switch to hip hop was just the last straw for me - I had a great dance night but I certainly heard my share of complaints, slow bartenders, piss poor atmosphere, etc. - it was obvious to my customers that management didn't much care for their business and that it was all about a little party for the owner and her buddies and the bartenders friends so they can drink for free as long as possible.  

 
Well, the fun stopped about a month ago.  The business is $60,000 in the gutter and the owner\manager has walked out.  Now, as of this week, the other remaining owner has stepped up and invested some of her own money in the business.  They have hired a new bar manager and decided to bring me back as a resident DJ.

 
My question is this:  Is this business worth saving with over $60K of debt?
The good news is that they have very low overhead and the stealing bartenders are gone.  They have a new manager who has accepted their offer to work on an incentive basis than base salary to improve the business.  I myself might throw down some money on lights and sound.  The thing is, right now they have ZERO customers.  Halloween is just around the corner and we have a lot of work to do in a short amount of time  - we are going to try to make the best of it.  I think IF we can all work together and get the place looking good again I can attract  some of my crowd and bring them back.  They've been on a downward spiral for a while and are now broke with no customers - is it too late to save it?

 
Alan
 
MY RESPONSE:
You are an amazing DJ, hard working, very insightful, and dedicated to this club, it is with the greatest of reluctance I give you my following Expertise,
WALK AWAY NOW.
 Do not invest a penny of your own $ in any equipment. It's way too late , with far too much in debt, with the worse reputation possible, the odds of you turning this
nightmare around is 1%.
You are too Good, too Talented and too Knowledgeable to not find another club gig. You were right all along, and this is another example of greed, arrogance, ignorance, zero respect, zero honesty, all resulting in what should of been a Great Club into a Total Disaster.
Good Luck Alan, You have what every Club is looking for.
_______________________________________________/
 
 
 
BIGGEST NIGHT FOR NIGHTCLUBS
 
 It's this Month, and it's the biggest night of the year for Nightclubs, Lounges and Bars. But far too many Owners will simply go through the motions and totally ignore the potential for doing 100x the business they normally would on a Wednesday  Night. I am speaking of "The Night Before Thanksgiving" it is the biggest night of the year for those Nightclubs, Lounges & Bars that maximize the "FUN" and the "WOW FACTORS" not with just the usual local band, not with drink specials galore, but with actual, interactive, high energy, "FUN" and "WOW".
It takes a full month of superior marketing, advertising, promoting to insure you have Women, Women and Spenders that night. It is not one of those they arrive late and stay for a couple of hours until you close. No way, it's the Night, they arrive early and stay all night long.
This is an entirely new Concept for many Owners to grasp.
They have not had a night where Clubbers, or Patrons came early, stayed through the night in years, if they can even remember when?
So now with early advice, I strongly urge you to stop whatever your doing and create a systemic Night of "FUN" and "WOW" all night long.
Most college students are home for the long weekend.
In fact Thanksgiving Night itself is another Night of Taking in Cash. Most clubbers and party people have spent all day and afternoon with Family, they ate the Turkey, did the Family Get Together, Now are ready to PARTYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY.
Then you have Friday and Saturday Nights to follow.
The most important aspect of your "GAME PLAN" is what are you going to do for four straight nights to bring out a crowd, connect with them, bring them back with their friends, keep them returning all weekend?
I am always shaking my head, when I ask Owners "What do you for the Night Before Thanksgiving"? They respond " Nothing". And why aren't you open Thanksgiving Night? NO, NO Bands, NO Karaoke, NO Comedy, NO Hip Hop Crap, NO, NO, NO.    
____________________________________/ 
 
  A BAR OWNER EMAILS ME:
"HELP THERE ARE FIVE OTHER BARS/CLUBS IN MY AREA, ALL ARE GIVING AWAY THEIR DRINKS, ONE HAS BEER @ 85 CENTS"
I ASK HIM, "WHAT ARE YOU DOING THAT THEY ARE NOT DOING?" HE RESPONDS "HUH".
I REITERATE, "WHAT "FUN" , WHAT "WOW FACTORS" ARE YOU HOSTING THAT TAKES THE LURE OUT OF EVERY OTHER PLACE IN TOWN THAT IS GIVING AWAY THEIR BAR, AND PLACES THE FOCUS FIRMLY ON "THE FUN" AND "THE WOW  FACTORS? HE TELLS ME THAT HE WILL NOT SPEND A PENNY ON RADIO OR NEWSPAPER ADS, BECAUSE OF MY ADAMANT OPPOSITION WHICH MAKES PERFECT SENSE TO HIM.
FINE, BUT THEN WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO MARKET WISE TO REPLACE THOSE TWO OLD WORN OUT MARKETING DOGS?
A FACEBOOK PAGE, WOW, THAT IS GOING TO PACK YOUR PLACE WALL TO WALL? NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. HE IS ALSO FEATURING JELLO SHOTS FOR $1 AND SCREWDRIVERS FOR $2
HE HAS OWNED THE BAR/CLUB FOR THREE YEARS, HAS NO CLUE WHAT TO DO, KEEPS BLAMING THE OTHER BARS/CLUBS FOR CHEAP TO DRINK NIGHTS. WHAT HE SHOULD BE DOING IS COUNTERING THAT PANIC PROMOTING, DRINK DESPERATION MODE OF OPERATING WITH "FUN" AND "WOW". HOW LONG DO YOU THINK AN OWNER GIVING AWAY HIS BEER @ 85CENTS, IS GOING TO LAST?
DON'T, DO NOT TRASH YOUR COMPETITION, RATHER EMPTY THEIR PLACE OUT. USE THE "RICHIE RIGHT IN THEIR FACE" STRATEGIES OF BRINGING IN WOMEN, WOMEN, AND SPENDERS.
AS I STATE IN MY OTHER ARTICLE THIS MONTH, THE FASTEST GROWING SEGMENT OF DRINKERS ARE WOMEN, CAUCASIAN WOMEN. THIS DATA IS GATHERED FROM A DETAILED MARKET STUDY.
BUT THIS IS NOT ABOUT GIVING WOMEN CHEAP AND FREE DRINKS, IT'S ALL ABOUT BRINGING IN WOMEN, HOT WOMEN FOR "FUN" AND "WOW" WHO WILL ORDER TOP SHELF AND CALL BRANDS, RATHER THAN THE WELL. IT'S ALL UP TO YOU.
OWNERS ARE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR THE EASY WAY TO STOP THEIR ESTABLISHMENT FROM SUDDENLY DECLINING IN TRAFFIC AND SALES.
THE REALITY IS, THIS DIDN'T HAPPEN OVER NIGHT AND UNLESS YOU TAKE ACTION NOW, IT WON'T STOP NOSE DIVING NIGHTLY.
YOU CAN BLAME WASHINGTON, D.C. AND ALL THE POLITICIANS YOU WANT FOR YOUR CURRENT PLIGHT, BUT TRUTH BE TOLD, YOU HAVE NO ONE TO BLAME BUT YOURSELF. THE SMARTEST OWNERS I HAVE ENCOUNTERED ARE THE ONES WHO HAVE THEIR GENERAL MANAGERS CONTACT ME AND THEN THEY, THEMSELVES TAKE ACTION.
 THE OWNERS WHO TALK, AND TALK AND TALK, ALWAYS END UP WITH THE WALK, WALK, WALK OUT OF BUSINESS.
THERE IS NO REASON WHY IF YOU HAVE A FULLY EQUIPPED KITCHEN THAT YOU SHOULD SIMPLY LET IT SIT IDLE, NOT MAKING THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS FROM FOOD SERVICE.
I DIDN'T SAY HIRE A CHEF, PREP PERSON AND DISHWASHER. I DIDN'T SAY SPEND ON PACKING THE WALK IN, I DIDN'T SAY ROLL OUT A BOBBY FLAY MENU. I SAID MAKE MONEY WITH SENSATIONL, SIMPLISTIC FOOD SERVICE, WITH NEXT TO ZERO OVERHEAD.
OH YES, IT CAN BE DONE AND IS BEING DONE ALL OVER THE USA. ALL NIGHT "BAR BITES".
WHAT YOU DO NOT OFFER AT YOUR BAR, AT YOUR CLUB, YOUR PATRONS, YOUR CLUBBERS WILL SEEK OUT ELSEWHERE. THAT IS WHY YOU SHOULD NOT GIVE ANY CUSTOMER A SINGLE REASON TO LEAVE YOUR NIGHT LIFE ADVENTURE, UNLESS IT IS , A TOTAL MISADVENTURE. ISN'T IT REALLY, TRULY TIME YOU STOPPED TALKING, STARTED DOING?
AREN'T YOU TIRED ALREADY OF CLUB PROMOTERS? ARE YOU ADMITTING RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW, YOU CAN'T PROMOTE, PRESENT, PRODUCE AND PACK YOUR OWN BAR/CLUB?
THEN SELL OUT, GET OUT, CLOSE OUT....................
    
 
 
 KUDOS TO KFC
 KFC, has gotten a lot of press lately thanks to its hugely hyped"Double Down", a sandwich that strikes some as the epitome of American excess. The company's latest offering, however, takes a step toward balancing that image: "REUSABLE PACKAGING". Already in place in five markets around the U.S., the 100% Propylene Containers, are replacing the Styrofoam boxes KFC has been using for side orders, such as mashed potatoes, green beans, and coleslaw.

KFC is calling it their best packaging idea since their iconic bucket, I totally agree, it is a major break  through  in Take Out Containers.
 
These new containers require 25 percent less energy to produce than the old polystyrene, and generates 50 percent fewer greenhouse gases. And because the container is both microwave- and dishwasher-safe, consumers really can reuse it. KFC  research shows that so far, about two-thirds of customers keep the containers for at least six weeks.

KFC is projected to reduce foam packaging  use by 62% by the end  this year. The rest of the Food and Beverage notice should take urgent notice of this major change in "TAKE OUT" and jump on the "REUSABLE  PACKAGING" methods ASAP. KFC's new Take Out Mantra is "Renew, Reuse & Rejoice".

Let me make this as clear as possible, foam boxes, and non recyclable bags are outdated and project a poor regard for the environment   and your customer's perception of your establishment. Unfortunately domestic sales for KFC units overall are down. Their marketing in my opinion stinks. Their Window Service leaves a lot to be desired, and their management has lost touch with what made KFC the Premier Chicken
Leader.
Their launch of "Grilled" was way too little in portions and way too late.
Their "Double Down" is a fat loaded, sodium loaded item with appeal to whom I have no clue. 
 
 
 
 
 
LEGENDS, TALL TALES, GOOD STORIES, MYTHS, WHATEVER YOU CALL THEM, THE 'DRINKING WORLD" IS FULL OF THEM, HERE ARE FEW OF MY FAVES TO DEBUNK:

MYTH: Beer before liquor, never been sicker -- liquor before beer, you're in the clear.
TRUTH: This is a cute jingle, but not reality. The percentage of alcohol in your blood (known as your blood alcohol content or BAC) is what determines how drunk you are. It doesn't matter what type of alcohol you chose to consume, alcohol is alcohol. More than your body can process can make you sick no matter what the order. A 12-ounce beer equals a 1.5 ounce shot of liquor.

MYTH: Dark beers are stronger in alcohol.
TRUTH: The color of beer has nothing to do with its alcohol content. People often mistake a beer like Guinness Irish stout for a "strong" beer when it actually has an alcohol volume of 4.2%, less than Budweiser's 5%. Many Belgian beers with a light color have the alcohol content of 8% or more.
 
 

MYTH: Sticking the handle of a spoon into a bottle of sparkling wine prevents the escape of carbonation.
TRUTH: Sparkling wine will keep darn well for a day or two under refrigeration even when left uncapped. The bubbles in sparkling wine are carbon dioxide, a gas that's both inert and heavy. After you pop that cork, the C 02 forms a layer on top of the wine that holds oxidation at bay and also helps to keep the remaining carbonation in liquid form. This layer holds even better when the wine is kept at a good chill.
 
 
MYTH: If you shake gin in a drink like a martini, you "bruise" it.
TRUTH: Hearing big ice cubes in a metal shaker sure sounds like that gin is taking a beating, right? Shaking a drink can end up diluting it a bit faster, so perhaps this is what some folks mean by bruising. You also create tiny shards of ice when you shake a drink -- I prefer my martinis stirred to avoid those shards. However, many gin cocktails are delicious when shaken.

MYTH: Mixing watermelon and alcohol will cause death. (Yes, there are people who believe this.)
TRUTH: There's no lethal chemical reaction with watermelon and alcohol.
 
 
 
GUNS IN BARS & RESTAURANTS, WHY?
 I am all for Gun Ownership and the Right To Bear Arms.
What I am totally opposed to, is the NRA's push State by State to enact legislation to permit guns to be carried into bars, nightclubs, restaurants, lounges, sports bars.
 I have seen first hand in my own Community, people shot and killed on the dance floor of nightclubs, when altercations broke out between individuals.
 I see no upside to allowing weapons of death in the same environment  as
"FUN" and "WOW FACTORS".
Thankfully, food and beverage establishments have the right to ban guns from their premises if they post a sign and inform their customers.
But too many Owners are afraid of alienating patrons, so they refrain from enforcing any type of protective policy. Especially with certain genres of music bellowing out violent lyrics and behavior, the last access you want in these types of venues is someone packing "heat".
While it is glorified in some music, it is horrifying to have your life put at risk simply because someone has a weapon and can fire at will, if provoked or is creating a hostile situation. Such danger arises every time someone with a gun feels threatened or is doing the threatening. 
Add to this menace , the 18 and over policy of some bars/clubs, you have the formula for a very tragic incident occurring . There is not a week that goes by, that someone is not knifed, beaten up, attacked either inside a bar, club sports bar or lounge, or outside in the parking lot. Why should any liquor establishment want to increase the odds of violence by allowing patrons to carry firearms into their bars, and then drink?
This is beyond stupidity, it's totally MORONIC.
I speak from over 40 years in this industry, how many do you have? 
I don't know what the thinking was in passing these laws, but I doubt lawmakers in these respective States actually visited the premises where at midnight, patrons have been drinking, energy is running at full speed, and someone or some patrons have guns on them? I am an adamant advocate of having door hosts wand  down patrons and searching pocketbooks at the front door, before even entering any night life venue. I have FIVE STEPS YOU SHOULD IMPLEMENT to avoid troublemakers, problematic patrons and to entice "Quality" Clubbers to come through your doors.
Email RichUnger@promotingnightclubs.com tell Rich what you think?
 
 
I CHALLENGE YOU TO DOUBLE YOUR REVENUE & PATRON COUNTS FROM NOW TILL NEW YEAR'S EVE.
THE QUESTION IS NOT IF YOU CAN DO IT, BUT HOW YOU DO IT? FIRST WHY LET PATRONS WAIT AND WAIT TO BE SERVED. YOU SHOULD HAVE A BEER TROUGH AS YOU ENTER,( THE BEER TROUGH IS FREE FROM YOUR BEER DISTRIBUTOR, EITHER LOANED TO YOU OR GIVEN TO YOU, PER YOUR STATE LAWS) A WINE BAR, A "SHOTPAK" BAR, THAT'S RIGHT DON'T POUR, MEASURE, OR USE TEST TUBES OR JELLO SHOTS, EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW GO TO WWW.SHOTPAKINC.COM AND SET UP A BAR TO SIMPLY SELL SHOT PAKS, REAP THE REVENUE, TAKE THE LOAD OFF THE MAIN BAR BY HAVING THREE ADDITIONAL MINI BARS THAT SELL SPECIFIC BEVERAGES.
BEER/WINE/SHOTPAKS= THREE FRESH NEW AVENUES OF INCOME. ESPECIALLY NOW DURING THE HECTIC DAYS OF THE HOLIDAYS. 
 


IT IS NECESSARY TO EVOLVE OR DIE
How long can you keep doing what your doing and stay open?
Why do you listen and do what so many people suggest, when they have no clue?
When are you going to rise above your
stubbornness and actually take your bar, your club, your sports bar, your ultra lounge and "EVOLVE"?
YOU SHOULD HAVE NEW YEAR'S EVE SOLD OUT BY DEC.10TH, IT SHOULD BE A NIGHT FILLED WITH "ULTRA FUN" AND "NON STOP WOW". NOT JUST THE TYPICAL, USUAL, PREDICTABLE TOAST @ MIDNIGHT.
EMAIL RICHUNGER@PROMOTINGNIGHTCLUBS.COM TELL HIM WHAT YOUR NEW YEAR'S EVE FORMAT IS.
 
   
 
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL.
FEED THOSE IN NEED, THOSE DOWN AND OUT. DO FOR OTHERS THIS YEAR.
IT COULD BE YOU, NEXT YEAR. 
Copyright � 2010 Rich Unger

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This web site, its contents, graphics and text are � 2005, Promoting Nightclubs.com.
All Rights Reserved. For comments, questions, or suggestions about this site, contact the webmaster.

[ Home ]

This web site, its contents, graphics and text are � 2005, Promoting Nightclubs.com.
All Rights Reserved. For comments, questions, or suggestions about this site, contact the webmaster.

[ Home ]

This web site, its contents, graphics and text are � 2005, Promoting Nightclubs.com.
All Rights Reserved. For comments, questions, or suggestions about this site, contact the webmaster.