“Teamwork: simply stated, it is less me and more we.” That makes sense, but what does it really mean? It’s easiest to explain teamwork using a sports analogy. Take football, for example. Each player on the team has a different role on the field. The strengths – and weaknesses – of each player are unique, but they all have the same goal of winning the game. Individual efforts of team members contribute to the team’s success, but they won’t reach their goal unless they work together. The same is true of teamwork in a restaurant.

Who Benefits from Teamwork in a Restaurant?

When teamwork is running effectively in your restaurant, the benefits are multi-faceted. First, each member of the team benefits. After all, life is a team sport. Working on a team helps employees learn important skills that not only make them better employees, but better people, too. Next up, managers benefit. Effective teamwork in a restaurant makes day-to-day operations run more smoothly. Finally, the business benefits from teamwork. When employees feel like they are part of a team, they’re more supportive of each other and morale is higher. This, in turn, reduces turnover costs and improves the bottom line.

How Does Teamwork Affect Guests?

The benefits of restaurant teamwork go beyond your internal people and business. A lack of teamwork means slower service, more mistakes, rude staff, and a negative guest experience. If employees are non-supportive, resentful, and unwilling to go above and beyond, the people who suffer most are your guests. You can have the best promotion, location, or prices in town, but if your guests are greeted by indifferent employees, your opportunity for repeat traffic walks right out the door.

What Makes Your Restaurant Team Work?

Effective teamwork in your restaurant doesn’t happen all by itself. It takes time, planning, and a dedication to ongoing team training. A well-trained staff not only helps your employees improve hard skills, like handling cash and stocking the shelves, it also improves soft skills such as communication and trust.

If you’re still wondering about the value of teamwork in a restaurant, remember the words of football great Vince Lombardi: “Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.”