it all turns out…

I’ve had an interesting two days. I usually don’t use my blog for personal life updates but in this instance I felt I needed to process. You see, yesterday I got a promotion at work. I had been expecting it for a little while, but with restaurants, you don’t usually get a lot of notice when you are moving. You hear rumors, you ask questions, you get some veiled answers, then one day your boss comes with a cake to tell you that in four days you will be running a different restaurant.

It’s funny, I came to the company I currently work for about 7 months ago. I was frustrated with my other job. They gave me a good offer and it was a good fit. I’ve been an assistant manager of restaurants now for about two years, and in the last few months I have wondered if my new employer was still serious about promoting me.

Well, they were, but I had my doubts for a while. About a month ago the general manager of a coffee shop that adjoins my location asked me why I didn’t have my own store yet. I expressed my minor frustration that they seemed to be dragging their feet with me but I didn’t know; maybe they just didn’t have a good place for me yet, or maybe what seems like a very male-driven company really doesn’t take me that seriously. I really didn’t know what to think. So as I chatted with the coffee shop GM he said I should apply with them. I was interested. So, what the heck, I wrote up a cover letter, polished my resume, and sent it in. I waited several weeks for the coffee company to call me for an interview. And they finally did, as the GM next store assured me they were going to.

Well, they called last night, right after the conversation where my regional told me I was getting my own store this Monday. How ironic is life. Actually, it’s good this way. The past few weeks I have really felt ready, for the first time, to run a restaurant. To lead it how I want, and be accountable for what happens. I am excited. It’s going to be a big challenge, from what I hear.

I’m heading to a very new but already opened store that’s had a rough first few weeks. I’m expected to go in, take charge, basically turn over the bad staff members and get my own stronger staff together, and increase their sales. Whew. I was searching my soul for nerves as my regional manager told me all about the bad open they had, the staffing problems, the dirtiness, etc etc and amazingly, I didn’t find any. I’m not nervous. I think even a few weeks ago I would have been.

In one way, I’m sad. I am leaving a great staff, an awesome GM who has really allowed me to grow, and a place where I am very comfortable. My “new” job, at least for a while, will be very uncomfortable. I will need to work a lot of hours, fire some people, have some difficult conversations. But this is growing up, having responsibility, living life. And I think I am ready for it. Wish me luck.


7 Responses to it all turns out…

  1. Laura,

    Having spent the first part of my life in the restaurant business, I say go for it. I grew up in the restaurant biz in Atlanta, a great restaurant town. It cost me my first marriage in fact. I moved to south Florida immediately and took a job running a restaurant there. It was a truly valuable experience, so I say go for it and enjoy. At the very worst, it will be a learning experience for you, and another notch in your resume. Good luck!


  2. Mary says:

    Wow, Laura!!! Major kudos to you – I’m so excited to come and visit you at your place 🙂 Can you rename it and make it Laura’s Burritos? Hee hee. So proud of you!!!

  3. Laura says:

    Thanks net friends. I’m excited. But even in these first few days knowing and preparing for this I have put in a lot of hours – whew. I’ve got a lot of work to do over there. But, again, I’m excited. I sort of get to start over and new with that.

  4. I remember the first time I had to fire a cocktail waitress. We both ended up crying before I was through. Tough the first time. Good luck.


  5. JEM says:

    Congrats! I don’t even know you, but it sounds like you are sure enough of yourself that you will do a great job. 🙂

  6. allan says:

    Good for you Laura! There is nothing like being excited about your 9-5. Well, I guess in the restaurant business it isn’t exactly 9-5 but you know what I mean.

    My dad runs his own pub and I remember him firing people left right and centre…only to hire them back the next day.

  7. Sarah says:

    Hey Laura,
    Read on Mary’s website about your new position. Congratulations on the promotion!!! WAY TO GO! Here’s another Barga wishing you all the best, as well as supernatural wisdom and peace and discernment about hiring and firing, making changes, etc. I hope it goes AMAZINGLY smoothly.

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