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Extra Silly Season

Extra Silly Season

by Phil Gannon

Scott Warman Rr Yf1 Rfot Sm Unsplash

Melbourne Cup traditionally marks the beginning of the silly season for hospitality operators, a season that will likely be extra silly given what everyone has experienced over the last few years.

As a result of years of conditioning, I cannot help but start thinking about the preparation required for venues and what they could be doing now to ensure their teams are adequately prepared for the massive upswing in trade. Today it dawned on me that this will be an extremely tough period, needing a different approach than years prior.

The lack of available skilled hands in frontline roles will place increased pressure on leaders in most businesses this summer. Inexperienced management teams won’t have access to the “this is how it’s done” knowledge typically passed down from the more experienced leaders, as many have now left the industry.

I remember approaching November and knowing what was coming; how much glassware to order, what time security needed to start, how to turn function spaces over from day to night-time events, what the roster times needed to be etc. The sector has lost a vast volume of experience over the last few years; therefore, execution is sure to be put under pressure, particularly the leaders in businesses with fewer experienced people to support them.

Leaders at all levels will need help, support and understanding. Hopefully, all operators can acknowledge this and take practical steps to ensure we do not suffer further loss of talent on the other side of the new year.

If anyone has any examples or strategies around how they plan to support their leadership teams, we’d love for you to share them.