Tag Archives: Insights

Business and Life Wisdom from Mom

My Mom kept it simple when we were growing up, but I still think of the things she said to guide us daily.  I still turn to her sayings in my business and personal life.

~ “Be considerate!” ~ I strive to think about what I am about to say or do and how others will react and feel.  This is a healthy version of being “PC.”

~ “I’m going to count to 3…” ~ I’ve learned to stop and think before speaking or taking action and I’ve never been sorry after doing so.

~ “Tomorrow is another day.” ~ I strive to let the grudges and failures of today not pollute my future attitudes and action.

~ “Mind your P’s and Q’s!” ~ In my lifelong involvement in  bar/restaurant hospitality industry, I’ve learned it’s a nickel and dime business where failure is often caused by ignoring a lot of little things.  I think that’s true of many other endeavors, both business and professional.

~ “It’s just one of those things.” ~ I have a need to analyze and understand everything, and I have to make peace with the reality that sometimes stuff just happens, and people act in ways that don’t make sense.

~ “We’ll see…” ~ Mom’s version of “maybe,” in response to those endless kid requests.  She taught me to be tactful in controlling requests, but staying open to possibilities.

~ “MOB!” (Mind your own business) ~ This is one I use every day and it saves me time, money, and aggravation.

~ “Don’t be unpleasant.” ~ Smile and the world smiles with you. Or as I say to Clients in the hospitality business, “Smile and Make Money!”

~ “Go outside and play!” ~ Mom had very tough rules limiting media screen time. Of course there was only the TV screen back then.  But growing up we “watched” much less than our friends, as Mom would kick us out the door to go expend some energy and grow our imagination.  Today, I’m aware that passively consuming too much media is binging on mental junk food.  I try to model behavior and spread the word to friends and associates that spending time with “talking heads,” talk radio, reality TV and negative web sites is mind pollution.

~ “Do unto others, as you would have others do unto you!” ~ The Golden Rule, present in every major faith, was big for my Mom and it remains the ultimate piece of Life Wisdom

So here’s my favorite Mother’s Day Song from Junior: “Mama Used to Say.”

And Here’s some more thoughts on what some “old school” mom’s taught us kids.

Happy Mothers Day!




Hospitality Business Hit Hard by Falling Millennial Wages.

Many hospitality business leaders and local operators are pulling their hair out over why traffic, sales and profits are falling at most bars and beverage driven restaurants. One big reason is a huge drop in the earning power of our primary market – young people. Read about it here, and here, very helpful in understanding the factors driving recent troublesome trends in sales and customer spending patterns.

At A-List we specialize in helping operators beat the trends toward discounting and lower margins by creating an exciting environment with exceptional customer experiences, that beats the competition in the war for customers’ shrinking entertainment budgets.





Six Drivers Of The $700B Mobile Internet

Our bar / restaurant industry is behind the curve on developing mobile friendly (responsive) websites, social media and other trends in mobile that are bringing big changes in customer habits. This should be a marketing priority for every restaurant, bar, nightclub, hotel and other hospitality operator! Shoot me a note for help with this – easy, proven, profitable moves you can make quickly. Cheers! TimTheBarGuy

Think you’re too cool to smile a lot? … Then you’re saying you’re cooler than Richard Branson.

Great advice from Sir Richard Branson:

“If you’re looking for the next big investment for your business, but don’t have much money to spend, start by looking at yourself in the mirror. A smile won’t cost you anything, and the returns to your business will start right away.”

Or as I like to say regarding the food and beverage service business, “SMILE, AND MAKE MONEY!”

Read the inspiring short piece in Entrepreneur Magazine:  Richard Branson on Smiling as a Competitive Advantage

If you don’t believe me or Richard Branson, maybe you’ll listen to Nat King Cole’s opinion.

Nat King Cole - Smile (single)

Have a great week and don’t forget to smile!  — TTBG

Why it’s so hard to sell to food and beverage operators: Recap

Here is an update to a post from a while back, as I continue to receive questions on this issue and have recently provided some new and successful solutions for my clients: (Tim)

nosalesmansignIn response to some questions I’ve received via LinkedIn and in person, I’ve thought about the primary reasons why sales professionals have so much difficulty selling in new products, line extensions, technology and new ideas in general to bar and restaurant (F&B) owners and managers. I’ve been on both sides of the table, selling to the industry and as an F&B industry buyer. I was marketing director for a chain of restaurants and bars for more than 10 years, with a purchasing budget in the millions. Also I’ve been a consultant and agency exec who’s successfully sold in hundreds of programs and products to the F&B industry.

I’m happy to answer any specific questions posted in comments, tweeted or otherwise sent my way re this subject. So here’s my take on the top reasons our industry is such a tough sell:

(1) Sales people often lack significant experience in the hospitality industry, so they aren’t current on the problems, workflow, challenges and even the language of F&B operations. Therefore the products they sell are often perceived as marginally relevant and trust is not established. Jargon is a big problem on both sides.

(2) You can bet that every operator has had bad experiences in the past saying ‘yes’ to supposed ‘free,’ ‘no-brainer’ or ‘money making’ products/systems. Every scammer, bust out or ball-dropper who wasted the operator’s time and money in the past works against today’s good sales person trying to sell to restaurants and bars.

(3) Successful operators often view the “new idea” sales person as trying to build a start-up on their shoulders, piggybacking on the F&B establishment’s success. For some reason this breeds resentment and unwillingness to buy/try.

(4) Complexity is your enemy in F&B operations. It’s already too complex and a daily struggle to operate food and beverage establishments. Good operators are focused on streamlining and simplifying, not adding layers. Anything that takes your eye off the ball of “the basics” better be a grand slam, not just somewhat beneficial, or you’ll lose more than you gain due to the drag of added complexity. I looked to get 7x return on investment for anything we spent time or money on when I was a buyer/marketing director for large independent. That’s a tall order.

(5) Inventories are kept low as possible. This makes line extensions and new brands a hard sell. Most top operators adopted “just in time” inventory principals more than 10 years ago. Every extra item stresses storage space and is seen as a waste or theft hazard.

Continue reading Why it’s so hard to sell to food and beverage operators: Recap