If you have strong organisational skills, a business mind and enjoy working with people then a career as a Restaurant Manager could be for you.
A Restaurant Manager is in charge of an eating establishment and usually sets the standard for food quality as well as service. Furthermore, a Restaurant Manager will work behind the scences to ensure that these standards are met. They are involved in hiring and training staff as well as managing employees in the restaurant. Restaurant Managers will also handle the purchasing of good/supplies, strategic planning, daily management and budget setting in a restaurant.
There are no paticular subjects that you will need to take in high school in order to become a Restaurant Manager. However, there are some subjects you could take to help you post high school.
- Business Studies
- Hospitality Studies
- Consumer Studies
Apart from Business and Tourism Management courses, studying towards a qualification in Hospitality Management is the best way formal way to become a Restaurant Manager. The following institutions are highly recommended for studies in Management:
- Nelson Mandela University (NMU) – Minimum Applicant Score of 310
- University of Venda (UniVen) – APS of 32
- University of Johannesburg (UJ) – APS of 26 (with Mathematics) or 28 (with Maths Literacy)
- Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) – Minimum APS of 27
- Cape Pennisula University of Technology (CPUT) – APS of 26 (with Mathematics) or 28 (with Maths Literacy)
In order to qualify as a Restaurant Manager, you can choose one of two routes. Either working as a waitron and gain industry experience. This path will lead to you becoming Head Waitron (with enough time and dedication to the job) after which you could become Restaurant Manager.
Alternatively, you could study a formal qualification in hospitality, tourism or business management. There are a variety of courses offered in each of these areas of management which range from a Higher Certificate to National Diploma to a Bachelor’s Degree. The better your qualification, the better your chances of employment at a managerial level in the industry.
You will need to have the following skills to succeed as a Restaurant Manager:
- business mind
- interpersonal skills
- the ability to work under pressure
- organisational and planning skills
- communication skills
- problem solving skills
As a Restaurant Manager, you would most commonly work in a restaurant. However, you could also have the opportunity to work in a pub, cafe, hotel, conference venue or cruise ship. The opportunities in this career are widespread as the food/entertainment industry is an important part of a country’s economy, in general.
In general, Restaurant Managers will work a 45 – 55 hour week which includes weekends, evenings and holidays. Most Restaurant Mangers will be the first to arrive at the restaurant and another manager will be the last to leave at the end of the day.
According to Payscale, the average annual salary of a Restaurant Manager in South Africa is R115 851 with an average bonus of R4 500.
Here are a few things you can expect from a career as a Restaurant Manager:
- working indoors most of the time
- managing administrative work
- dealing with a variety of people on a daily basis, including dissatisfied customers
- having to take on a lot of responsibility
- a dress code that could ranger from a company uniform to formal attire
- often working in a fast-paced and stressful environment