March 15, 2020 will be a day synonymous with a systemic change. Although Covid had been making headlines for a couple months, here in North America, reality was finally setting in as every major jurisdiction went quiet. Full lockdown, streets emptied, and mothers trading their first borns for a roll of toilet paper!
Well not quite that bad…fortunately. Despite a genuine fear that Covid lurked on every surface and that your delivery driver was one cough away from starring on the Walking Dead, many began discovering the art of bread making and were spared the long commutes in favour of wearing their pyjama bottoms to their meetings.
The whole world hit pause and perhaps for the first time in human history, we patiently waited for the future to return to a somewhat ‘normal’.
So what does that world look like going into year two of Covid and beyond?
“Having received more press and public outreach than ever before, the industry we care so much about is having its moment in society’s collective consciousness.”
For restaurants, arguably one of the hardest hit sectors, the future has never been so ambiguous. Having received more press and public outreach than ever before, the industry we care so much about is having its moment in society’s collective consciousness.
People are tipping more, being more grateful for a well cooked meal, and more patient about how long things take to prepare or be delivered.
“One has to truly ask, where is this industry headed?”
The reality, however, is that most restaurants are merely surviving because of government subsidies and many are closing their doors. This not generally due to direct bankruptcy, but because the mental energy needed to make it through this is just not worth the hypothetical financial return. One has to truly ask, where is this industry headed?
This series will begin by looking at the history of restaurants, because to look into the future, we have to understand the humble beginnings. Then, we will examine why current dining room economics just don’t make sense and where the new equilibrium lies. Finally, I would like to share a more upbeat look at five things that I am really excited about when dining does return to normal.
An expert in dining room economics and the guest experience, Frazer Nagy is an entrepreneur and the co-founder of Tablz, a Transparent Kitchen company, committed to a vision of changing the way the story of your dish is communicated and helping restaurants finally become profitable businesses.