Restaurant Manager Interview Questions and Answers

Posted in Career Blog

Restaurant managers have a host of responsibilities to which they must tend, so an interviewer will likely ask a variety of questions to ensure that candidates are prepared for the job. The following restaurant manager interview questions and answers can help you convince your interviewer that you are both qualified and capable.

How Would You Handle an Understaffed Shift?
One of your responsibilities will be scheduling employees for an entire shift—or perhaps for all shifts. As such, you will likely encounter a situation in which one or more employees cannot make it to work. When this happens, there are several things you might do. “The first thing I would do is contact employees who are scheduled off that day to find out if any of them would be willing to cover the shift. If not, I would take it upon myself to fulfill the missing employee’s role. However, since prevention is the best solution, I would implement a reward system for employees who maintain perfect attendance” is a great answer as it provides not only a solution, but a proactive idea to prevent the issue from occurring.

Explain a Time When You Dealt with a Serious Customer Complaint.
Producing quality delicious food is the goal of any restaurant, so being able to handle customer complaints before they escalate is very important. Your interviewer may provide you with a hypothetical scenario; for instance, consider a scenario in which a customer has found a hair in his or her soup. Your answer should resemble: “In this situation, I would apologize profusely to the customer and ensure him or her that I would take steps to prevent this issue in the future. Then, after the soup has been replaced, I would offer to either compensate for a portion of the customer’s meal or give them a gift certificate for an entrйe of equal value according to restaurant policy.”

How Would You Handle an Employee who is Not Performing to Your Expectations?
From time to time, employees do not meet company expectations in relation to their performance. The reasons for this are many, and it will be your responsibility to get to the bottom of it and remedy the situation. “First, I would attempt to find the reason for the employee’s lack of performance. I would be sure to listen carefully and discover the best way to motivate the employee to do a better job. However, if the poor performance continues, I would follow the company’s disciplinary protocols up to and including termination” is a great answer. It shows that you will take the initiative to help the employee, but it also proves that you are not afraid to be authoritative when necessary.

How Do You Prepare for a Health Inspection?
Although it may be tempting to say that you would implement a restaurant-wide cleaning spree, this is not the correct answer for this question. Although some inspections may be scheduled, others are not; this means there may not be time to clean prior to the inspector’s arrival. “The restaurant’s employees should prepare for a health inspection every day in everything they do. Each employee should be aware of both federal and state requirements as well as company policies, and they should adhere to them at all times” is the best answer you could provide.

By answering these and other interview questions confidently and accurately, you will be able to prove to your interviewer that you have what it takes to make the restaurant a success.

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