There’s a popular belief that nine out of ten new restaurants fail in the first year. It’s a myth.
A new study by an associate professor of hospitality management at Ohio State has identified a real figure of six. Six out of ten new restaurants fail in the first year. That’s still pretty high mortality, but not out of line with startups in other business categories.
Nevertheless, I think the only business tougher than retail is the restaurant business. There are just so many different reasons why people don’t come back.
A wise marketing professor once said that when things go wrong, more often than not, it isn’t because the strategy was bad; it was because the strategy was executed poorly, or, not at all. In other words, nobody made it happen.
William Bonoma at the Harvard School of Business likened it to war. He said, in effect, without a competent, hard-charging sergeant to drive the squad up the hill, no strategy would work.
Among all the other benefits of the Internet is how the Internet re-affirms principles we should already know.
For instance, one of my favorites is that people do more business with people who make it easy to do business with them. It’s not just that the Internet is there and is omni-present. It’s that the Internet is crowded with E-tailers who make it easier to do business with them than with most RE-tailers.
An expression I don't hear much any more is, “don't sweat the small stuff,” but I absolutely see demonstrations of it everyday. It means don't worry about the details and concentrate on the “big picture.”
Yet, little matters more than the details, because it is the details that determine the quality of the execution, and most great strategies or plans fail, not because they were bad, but because they were executed poorly. Billions in a retail chain with check-out clerks who don't even look at the customer.