Pizza Today - November 2017 - 60

ROAD
TO
EXPO

The Top Ten Most Important
Lessons I've Learned in the
Pizza Business
By Michael Shepherd

1. The pizza business is
the "people business." You
need people to make your
pizza, and you need people
to buy your pizza. You need
both a passion for people
and pizza. The sooner you
understand this the sooner
things will make sense.

2. Being profitable is a

fails at their job, most of
the time it is because I
hired the wrong person,
didn't train them properly,
or didn't give them the tools
they needed to succeed.
Take a good hard look at the
reasons why an employee
failed and learn from them.

5.

deliberate action. It doesn't
come by luck or automatically by high sales. Restaurant profit is in the boring
details and tedious tasks of
managing ideal food cost
variance, labor budgets,
prime vendor agreement,
portion control, and so on.

The customers are not
always right, but we need
to make sure they think they
are. Even if the customer is
wrong, they are still right. It
is all about the customer's
perception. What do we
accomplish by proving them
wrong? Nothing. There is
no room for an ego in a successful pizzeria. Be humble.

3.

6. You must be a jack-of-

Systems and delegation
allow for growth. Creating
easy-to-follow systems
and procedures gave my
employees the tools they
needed to do the job right.
They knew what to do
and how to do it, freeing
managers up to manage
and allowing me to focus on
growing the business.

4.

Most employee failures
are my fault. If someone

all-trades. Success comes
more easily when you not
only know how to make
pizza but can fix that leaky
faucet, change out that
exhaust fan motor, sort
a database of customer
addresses, design a flier on
your computer, and prepare
a P&L report. Waiting on
others to do things often
means lost sales and lost
opportunities.

7.

A great recovery means
everything. Mistakes will
happen and they will happen on a regular basis. How
you respond to them will
determine if you keep the
customer or not. Every mistake should be apologized
for, corrected and made up
for. Learn this refrain: "I'm
sorry, here's a new pizza,
and here is $5 off your next
order."

8.

Slow growth is permanent growth. Real long-term
growth comes from customers who have decided that
you are now their favorite
pizzeria. They choose you
for lunch or dinner automatically because they love you
and your service, not your
prices. Changing people's
habits takes time.

9.

Marketing is made of
a million parts. There is no
silver bullet when it comes
to marketing. It is made up
of many different elements
all working together -
direct mail, social media,
word of mouth, community
involvement. Never put
your marketing eggs in one
basket.

10. Hire slowly and fire
quickly. Take your time in
hiring the right people that
are the best fit for both the
position and the culture of
the pizzeria - even if it
means operating shorthanded while you search
for them. Quickly terminate
those who don't assimilate.
Always follow your gut
instinct.
Michael Shepherd,
president of perfectingpizza.com, owned and
operated three pizzerias
in northwest Ohio for 20
years, growing smalltown locations into a
multi-million-dollar
company using nontraditional marketing
methods and a systemic
approach to operations.
At Pizza Expo 2018, he'll
be speaking on how to
make a 20 percent profit
and giving a workshop
on opening a pizzeria.

Registration is now OPEN! - Visit PizzaExpo.com for more information.
6 0 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 7


http://www.perfectingpizza.com http://www.perfectingpizza.com http://www.PizzaExpo.com http://www.PizzaExpo.com http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - November 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - November 2017

Pizza Today - November 2017
Commentary
Contents
Contributors
Expo Spotlight
Interact
Conversation
Man on the Street
Respecting the Craft
At Your Service
Destinations
Knead to Know
Menu Boards
Sauce & Cheese Pairings
Open-Faced Sandwiches
Mac & Cheese Main Dishes
Customer Demographics
Immigration Enforcement
Forced Closure
Road to Pizza Expo
Top 100 Pizza Chains
On the Road: Fire!, Spokane, Wa
On the Road: The Boiler Room, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Reader’s Resource
Mike’s Monthy Tip
Pizza Today - November 2017 - CT1
Pizza Today - November 2017 - CT2
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Pizza Today - November 2017
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover2
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Commentary
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 4
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 5
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Contents
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 7
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 8
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 9
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Contributors
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 11
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 13
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Interact
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 15
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Conversation
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 17
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 19
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Respecting the Craft
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 21
Pizza Today - November 2017 - At Your Service
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 23
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Destinations
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 25
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 27
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 28
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 29
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Menu Boards
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 31
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 32
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 33
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Sauce & Cheese Pairings
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 35
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 36
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 37
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Open-Faced Sandwiches
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 39
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 40
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 41
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Mac & Cheese Main Dishes
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 43
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 44
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 45
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Customer Demographics
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 47
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 48
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 49
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Immigration Enforcement
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 51
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 52
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 53
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Forced Closure
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 55
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 56
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 57
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Road to Pizza Expo
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 59
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 60
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 61
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Top 100 Pizza Chains
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 63
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 64
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 65
Pizza Today - November 2017 - On the Road: Fire!, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 67
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 68
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 69
Pizza Today - November 2017 - On the Road: The Boiler Room, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 71
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 72
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 73
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 74
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 75
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 76
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 77
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 79
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 80
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 81
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 82
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 83
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 84
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 85
Pizza Today - November 2017 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 87
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 88
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 89
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 90
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 91
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 92
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 93
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 94
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 95
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 96
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Reader’s Resource
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Mike’s Monthy Tip
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover3
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover4
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