4. Why Teal?

In pursuance of creating a Symbiotic Teal bar you have to start by implementing new approaches to your business. Changing the dynamics focuses on improving the whole staffs health, motivation, self-management and leadership skills. On top of that, the improvements are valuable for all levels of the organization.

For current bartenders and floor staff, the improvements create a chance for taking on responsibilities and tasks close to your interests, since they are not solely taken on by the managers above you. By being able to participate in executive meetings and having access to the administrative “back of the house” data, you can have a greater understanding of the business as a whole. Transparency builds trust and you will have a sharper understanding what is expected from you, instead of just following orders without knowing the true purpose for the task. Engaging in the operational work can gain your expertise for opening your own bar one day, if that’s something you are interested in. Of course, non-disclosure agreements (NDA) and other legal matters cannot be violated. Getting a grasp of how to run a business and to learn from that can be done without stealing. Be worth the trust the company gives you.

For current managers, the improvements mean more assistance from your co-workers, since every task doesn’t have to be single-handedly done by you. When others are allowed to carry some of the weight, for example place product orders, less burn outs and sleepless nights are coming your way. This can free up your time and energy for the creative aspects you probably miss from the time before filling the end of the month inventory lists and ordering toilet paper. On the other hand, you might want to be more active on the executive meetings and take on responsibilities related to social media, community building or even look into launching a product (spirit, soda, condiment) under the bars name. The opportunities are endless, if you give away some of your power (simultaneously freeing your time) and let the staff take certain responsibilities off of your hands.

For current owners, implementing these changes to your bar creates an adaptive, self-learning and self-managing venue. If you are part of the bars day-to-day ‘bees knees’, you can receive support from your co-workers/employees similar to managers. If your end goal is to step back from the daily operations, the Teal approach enables the bar to thrive on it’s own. Nevertheless, you have created the bar and you give the framework for it. But at the end of the day, the people who work there are shaping the bar to it’s final form by adding an ounce of their personalities and a dash of their razzle-dazzle to it. Creating an environment where the people are allowed and supported to grow to be the best versions of themselves is something I think should be encouraged more in our industry. Whether you are a hands-on owner or one who has made the move to the sidelines, coach your team so well that they can “dethrone” you. Because when they finally do, you know your venue will still be in good hands.

What comes to the financial side, applying the Teal approach can help reduce the costs and create greater profits in the long run. When the whole team works in a self-managed and accountable way, your management costs reduce considerably since you don’t need to use as many work hours in micromanaging. Simultaneously, the need for meetings is cut down and the information flows faster and more efficiently. When your employees have a suitable knowledge of the business, they have a greater understanding of the bigger picture regarding wastage, pricing and giving out discounts. Instead of just clocking in and out daily, they constantly have one eye on the horizon taking care of the overall view.

When the team knows the objectives, budgets and limits that needs to be met in order to even operate and get salary, remembering to upsell feels more relevant than a trivial three dollar sparkling wine incentive. Also, they are more willing and able to start initiatives that benefit the bars growth and expansion. I’m not saying it happens over night, but investing in your employees health and motivation is the best thing you can use your money for in the long run.

Movements similar to Teal, or precisely Teal, have been common especially in the Start-Up world during the last decade. Examples range from IT and Gaming industries to Cryptocurrency and Retail companies. It’s not as easy as copying and pasting from one industry to another (it’s pretty hard to have a remote work day in a bar) but the change in management trends is noticeable. People change, the industry has to change as well, to suit the needs of a modern human.

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Mika Ammunét Written by:

Bar Manager, Future Bar Owner

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