How to Lose $500+ in Business on a Quiet Monday Night

publication date: Mar 31, 2024
author/source: Jaime Oikle


Here's a quick story on how to lose $500+ in business on a quiet Monday night.

Our group of 23 (8 adults & 15 kids) walks into the waiting area of Restaurant A. The staff begins to set the sitting area for the group and here it comes...

"Could you kids behave?" (said in just the tone and attitude you might imagine)

Ouch. Three things restaurants really shouldn't talk about -- politics, religion and telling parents how to discipline their kids.

Now trust me our kids can in fact misbehave. However, that was not the case here, and even if there was a small issue, it should have been politely addressed to the parents. This group of parents and kids eats out frequently as a large group and we are very aware of our kids' behavior in the restaurants we eat at.

The result: 23 people walking out the front door!

Economic Impact

$500 billThe immediate impact was about $500 in lost sales and maybe $100 in wait staff tips. But, oh, what about future lost revenue. How soon, if ever, will any of the seven families return to this restaurant? And, oh no, what about word of mouth? This is the kind of story that gets passed around quite a bit and certainly impacts the perception of the "circle of influence" of all the people involved. Without even doing any fancy math, I can tell you it's a big deal. The sort of accounting that no restaurant wants nor can afford to do.

Marketing Lesson/Reminder

team at restaurantYour customers have a choice of where to eat!

This particular restaurant had the chance to hit a home run without even swinging. They did no marketing to our group. They just happened to be nearby so it could have been a big win for them.

But guess what, there were 5 suitable replacement restaurants in walking distance and another 5 within a 5 minute drive. Subtle tip: don't piss your potential guests off because they're gone in 30 seconds and who knows if they will ever be back. And restaurants, like many businesses, rely heavily on repeat business.

Monday Night...

Both restaurants are quite large and had ample space for a large group on an otherwise quiet Monday night. Maybe on a slamming Saturday night there's no dent in your business from such a mishap, but I guarantee you a group of 23 makes a difference on Monday night. I don't know too many restaurants who would want to pass that up.

Now Restaurant B didn't hit everything out of the park (please bring our adult beverages quickly-trust me here), but they were accommodating and friendly and took good care of the kiddos. And what is marketing gold for any restaurant to hear... "we'd consider going there again."

No need to name the restaurants, but what's important is that any day of the week you want to capture as much business as you can. Can you really afford to do otherwise?

Jaime OikleJaime Oikle is the Owner & Founder of, a comprehensive web site for restaurant owners & managers filled with marketing, operations, service, people & tech tips to help restaurants profit and succeed.

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