A few nights ago, I was flipping through the channels and I came across this show I’ve never seen before. The basic premise was this guy, who is a supposed expert in bar science, goes into failing bars and nightclubs, gives the owners some tough-love and turns them around to become more profitable. It was interesting, so I gave it a shot. I found it a bit over-acted but I enjoyed the basic idea behind the show. It let me see some of the inner workings of a bar that I had never really paid too much attention to before.
On one episode, the expert was installing a new bottle service section and updating how the area was managed. According to the owner, the VIP area was losing money, when in fact, it should be one of the highest margin areas of the entire business. The flaw in this particular bar was attributed to theft, as we would eventually find out. Bottle service hosts were also working the normal bar, so there was not a dedicated host to each VIP table. The hosts would sell shots of the VIP bottles to normal bar patrons and pocket the cash. There were no controls in place to stop this.
The fix was two part and pretty simple. Going forward, the hostess at the bottle service tables were only responsible for that table. They didn’t run the bar, they didn’t serve other tables and their attention was not solely focused on their VIP guests. The second part was the introduction of Alpha EASy Bottle for the premium liquor. Now, when the host needed to serve a VIP guest a drink, she would have to remove the security device and pour the drink, eliminating the possibility of her selling shots of the purchased liquor to other patrons and pocketing the cash.
I thought this was pretty cool to watch. It’s not that often that I come across loss prevention tactics on cable television. It made me think that they guy might actually know what he’s talking about. Someone that puts that much emphasis on shrink and unnecessary loss is alright in my book.
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