You win by putting clients second!

You win by putting clients second!

"Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients." -Richard Branson

The café industry is as much about people as it is about food. Making it a great experience is highly rewarding for staff morale as well as your pocket.

There is nothing better than going to a café where the team are smiling and happy, are well engaged with each other and with the customers. Mix this with great coffee and food, and you have a winning formula.

If you look after your team, your team will look after your customers, and your customers will take care of you. Get this wrong and it can quickly fall apart.

Here are 3 simple ways to enhance the experience for your staff.

  1. Team get-togethers. Get your team together for an outing at least 2-4 times per year, as a way to show your team your appreciation. This could entail a meal, activities like mini golf or bowling, or something as simple as a beach picnic. This could also be an opportunity to give out awards for various things, be it silly, fun or serious awards.


  1. Public praise, private corrections. Everyone appreciates being told how great they are, especially if their peers can hear it. They will be beaming and this will transfer to your customers.

This also works in the opposite. You can quickly damage a relationship by berating someone in front of others. Make any corrective conversations private, beginning the conversation with an appreciation about the person.

I know of a café where a customer had emailed the café manager about a standout barista. The manager got jealous and kept this to herself instead of publically praising the barista. By chance the barista saw the email, and within a short space of time she quit her job. What an opportunity missed.


  1. Rewarding standout performance. Actively look for standout performance, where your team go the extra mile for a customer. This could be getting to know your customers, consistently bringing glasses of water to tables (if this is not the norm), saying goodbye to customers as they leave, remembering particular things about customers, e.g. their kids birthdays…

So remember, take care of your employees, and they will take care of the clients.

See you next time.

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