Canadian Pizza Magazine

Features Business and Operations Marketing
from the editor’s desk: Make time to be the best


It’s March and New Year’s resolutions have come and gone, either into fruition or failure. Now is the perfect time to realign your resolve and check in with your commitment to drive your business to bigger profits and better products.

It’s March and New Year’s resolutions have come and gone, either into
fruition or failure. Now is the perfect time to realign your resolve
and check in with your commitment to drive your business to bigger
profits and better products.

To celebrate the commencement of spring, I
like to remind myself of one simple fact of every business: no one
wants to pay for average and no one wants to sell average. Success is
in creating a unique value proposition for customers that goes above
average in every regard. The surest way to find out where you stand is
to spend time with your customers and scout your competition. This all
takes time – time that gets stolen by unexpected problems, inefficient
processes and a lack of organization. But it takes time to create
solutions, agendas and priorities. It’s quite the catch-22 for many
pizzeria operators and all the sweat equity they’re investing in their
passion for pizza.

A great pizzeria starts with a fabulous pie and then is organized as
such to consistently provide the remaining components, such as service
and cleanliness, that make up the value package of your product and
experience. Inside the pages of this issue you’ll find articles
designed to help balance the needs of the quality product against the
time constraints facing you, the operator. We’ve compiled expert advice
on choosing high-quality ingredients, fresh produce and busting those
time bandits that get in the way of long-term planning and policy
creation.

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I recently read a book I’d been meaning to read for some time called
The Myth of Multitasking by time management expert Dave Crenshaw. It’s
a fresh take on the essential human truth – we can really only do one
thing at a time. Checking our e-mail while talking to an employee
doesn’t do justice to either activity, notes Crenshaw, and, in fact,
damages the relationship with the person, who is not receiving the full
attention they require. Performance needs attention and high
performance needs the focused and dedicated concentration of a winning
athlete.

I found Crenshaw’s deduction of how much time is lost in switching
rapidly between activities fascinating – anywhere from 28 to 50 per
cent of the day is cited in the book, depending on how senior the
management. We live in an information overload era where we are
expected to put our brain in a million places at once, but this is the
fastest route to mediocrity, and Crenshaw makes a convincing case that
it’s neither efficient nor effective. If you find yourself in constant
firefighting mode and never seem to find the time to sit down and do
the organizing that would help prevent the fires, I recommend reading
The Myth of Multitasking. The worksheets at the back of the book are a
practical way to start managing events – and not allowing events to
manage you – as well as is realistically possible.

Reassessment is often motivating and spring is a great excuse to purge
the superfluous from your business. Hugh Johnston of Hugh Johnston
Strategy and Business Planning sums up the singular caveat in
restaurant time management in “Beat your time busters” on page 22 by
saying: “The biggest single time waster is doing anything that the
customer doesn’t want or won’t pay for.” Put in that context, it is a
starting point for tightening the focus of your business and revealing
the unique value proposition that makes your brand above average. And
that’s what every customer wants to pay for.