Customized Restaurant Planning Tool to Combat Uncertainty in your Business

Dan Bachrach is the Manager of the Business Enterprise Service Team at Burr Pilger Mayer, Inc. Dan has created a Restaurant Planning Template exclusively for GGRA members, which can be downloaded here. The Restaurant Planning Tool is a customized spreadsheet designed to help businesses determine what changes, specifically menu changes, would have on a restaurant’s revenue. If you have questions about the tool, you can reach Dan by email at or by phone at 415-677-4563. If you have trouble logging in to download, please email Samantha.  

Benjamin Franklin has been cited as the author of the old adage “In this world nothing can be certain, except death and taxes”. As business owners in the San Francisco Bay area can attest to, nothing in this life can be certain, except death, taxes, and now, uncertainty. The current political, social, economic, and legislative environment in the Bay Area and throughout the State continues to evolve resulting in constant change and uncertainty as to the impact these changes will have on businesses.

In conjunction with the GGRA, I have developed a restaurant planning tool that provides business owners with the knowledge necessary to understand how these uncertainties may contribute to their financial viability. This tools provides a financial snapshot of current profitability, and then allows for owners to setup multiple ‘what-if’ scenarios to determine what effect certain changes may have on the profitability of the business. The tool also provides a break even analysis that indicates the minimum number of weekly guest checks required in order to cover the total weekly costs.

By providing this tool to GGRA members, it is our objective to empower owners to gain the necessary financial knowledge so that the decision that are made within the business can be both meaningful and impactful. While it is recognized that uncertainty will not be departing anytime soon (as with death and taxes), owners who have the resolve to succeed and take the time to gain the necessary knowledge will find the greatest opportunities for continued success.

The year 2015 brought about 930 new state laws as well as numerous City and Federal laws. These laws bring about a great level of uncertainty to business owners who are simply trying to deliver to their customers a great product at prices that are both competitive and cover the costs of doing business. But not all hope is lost. As I meet with my clients to discuss these concerns, I always come back to two traits the empower employers to manage this uncertainty: Resolve and Knowledge.

RESOLVE: For owners, resolve is what paved the way for success within their business. Resolve brings about a determination to overcome anytime someone counseled them to give up or to change their course. Resolve was the answer to even the most difficult of circumstances. And sustained resolve was solidified by the daily successes that encouraged the continued course. There is a great deal to be said about the individual who is determined for success, particularly in the face of severe challenges. As renowned author Wayne Dyer so aptly described it, “There is no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love; there’s only scarcity of resolve to make it happen”.

KNOWLEDGE: Second and equally as important to overcoming these challenges is knowledge. This term has a number of definitions, put simply put, knowledge is a theoretical or practical understanding of a subject or skill. Knowledge is vital to owners in order to ensure that informed decisions are being made. Knowledge empowers owners to discretely review competing priorities in order to come to a conclusion as to the most prudent course of action. Without knowledge, or without a complete understanding of the facts and circumstances, the difficult decisions wrought by owners are usually accompanied by disappointment or regret.

While I seldom have the ability to motivate my clients to increase their resolve (other than the occasional ‘pep talk’), I do find many opportunities to assist my clients in gaining the necessary knowledge in order to empower them to make informed decisions. The ability to create a solid foundation of knowledge is a tremendous asset to assist owners in overcoming the uncertainty that exists within the business environment. Owners who take the time to increase in knowledge through theoretical and practical experience are more likely to find long-term success, which in turn brings about joy in the work they are performing.


Recent Posts

Leave a Comment