Making the Inc. 5000 List

Inc 5000 2010 List

Inc 5000 2010 List

Of all the restaurants in New York City, Bogota Latin Bistro does a pretty great job of getting itself media attention. Bogota has been featured in numerous press, both print, television, radio and digital. Hard as it is to believe, I don’t pay a public relationship firm to get me in the press. The press seeks me out and I give them what they want.  The press seeks the path of least resistance.  They want a story that’s already there and they want someone who can easily tell it.  That’s us. We have a great story. It’s the proverbial story of the little engine that could (and did).  Ours is the story of Two guys who wanted to open a restaurant with no money and little experience but lots of faith, determination and discipline. Throw in hard work and a continual investment of time, energy and money into a passion for latin culture and it’s food.  Throw in the fact that my business partner and I are also life partners with twins on the way, the story only gets better.

Inc. 5000 Applicant of the Week:  Bogota Latin Bistro

“I Don’t Do Voucher Discount Programs”

Bogota Latin Bistro: New York's Best Colombian Restaurant

Bogota Latin Bistro

Yes, I am a restaurant owner and ‘No’, I have not participated in any voucher programs. I recently attended an event sponsored by Culintro here in New York City discussing voucher discount programs. I wanted to know if these programs worked for any of the panelists in attendance and what their view on them were. I left unconvinced that vouchers would be beneficial to my business.

As expressed by one of the panelists representing Tribeca Grill, I don’t feel like sharing a piece of my pie with anyone at the same time that I’m discounting my food and, in my estimation, cheapening my brand, in exchange for exposure when I feel the best exposure I can get is from doing all the right things right here within my walls.

I believe that these vouchers work well for start ups and possibly for new concepts but I’m already sitting on a restaurant that people have no problem patronizing and paying full price for in exchange for the great food, drinks and service we offer here. Bottom line: we offer a great value here as it is. We have an atypical restaurant: we defy the odds of most places. We could easily be busy (and often are) on Mondays and Tuesdays when most places have employees standing around doing nothing and going home with empty pockets. Do the right thing inside your walls, stay on top of what the competition is doing, treat your guests correctly, hire the best, train them, surprise and delight guests inside the restaurant through specials, freebies (we call them ‘promo’s”’), keep the place clean (especially the bathroom), reach out to them via Facebook and Twitter (as we often do), make them feel absolutely welcome when they walk in the door and absolutely appreciated as they walk out. Do this, among a host of other things (and I can assure that the MAJORITY of restaurants in NYC don’t do half the things I’ve mentioned here) and you’ won’t have to resort to voucher programs. Running a restaurant is hard work. It requires a huge investment of time, energy and money to stay ahead of the competition. If you can’t play with the big boys by doing all or most of the right things, then voucher programs might just be for you.

6 Factors To Consider When Contracting, Hiring, Promoting, Demoting or Firing

American Success Story

Bogota Latin Bistro founders  F. Ali Lancheros and George Constantinou

Six Key Factors I use when Contracting, Hiring, Promoting or Considering Dismissing:

  • Like: “Do I like this person?”
  • Trust: Do I trust this person?”
  • Respect: “Do I respect this person?”
  • Integrity: “Does this person have integrity? Do they mean what they say and say what they mean?”
  • Intelligence: “Is this person intelligent? Do they offer ideas and solutions? Do they understand concepts and values important to me and my business?”
  • Energy: “Is this person dynamic and growth oriented? Can they keep up and/or lead with the growth demands of my company?”

If they pass all six, I keep them around.

Follow

Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: