As a large independent or multi-site business operator in the hospitality industry, you’ve made it through the pandemic. You’re primed for growth but now what? With a new outlook in mounting responsibilities, how do you keep success going? This is where the real work begins. In his new book, You Can’t Do It Alone, hospitality coach, Matt Rolfe, teaches how to maximize profit and scale your business with solutions focused on the people behind your company. You’ll learn how to build a strong team and delegate efficiently with focused goals, inclusive strategies, and open impactful communication. The growth of your business depends on the people who work for you and their success depends on you.

Hey listeners, my name is Drew Appelbaum and I’m excited to be here today with Matt Rolfe, author of You Can’t Do It Alone: Focusing on People to Scale, Develop, and Lead Your Restaurant. Matt, thank you for joining, welcome to The Author Hour Podcast.

Matt Rolfe: Thanks for having me, Drew.

Drew Appelbaum: Let’s kick this off. Can you give us a brief rundown of your professional background?

Matt Rolfe: Absolutely. I’ve spent my entire career in the hospitality industry, which I love but I really found it by accident. I started working in restaurants at entry-level positions and then I was really lucky to start with a company called Bacardi— a lot of us know Bacardi— at the age of 19. I got a chance to work as a summer rep but a couple of weeks in, my boss got promoted and I got left with this great territory just north of Toronto. For anybody who knows Barrie Ontario at north, places I’ve never been since. But I was left to venture out and talk to restaurant operators and sell it to restaurant operators but as somebody who was really young, I just really listened. 

After my time with Bacardi, I got a chance to then join the team at Labatt Breweries which now is Anheuser-Busch. The biggest brewery on the planet. Labatt was just such an incredible opportunity. I traveled all over Ontario, had a chance to have territories that included hundreds of some of the top operators still to this day. A decade-plus later, some of the best operators in Ontario and over time, built relationships with them, traveled to different cities, did Ottawa, did Barrie, did Toronto, did the east end of Toronto as well. That’s how I started, selling products to operators. 

What I found was my career— at one point, I asked myself a really difficult question; did I want to continue to grow and climb the corporate ladder at Labatt? Which is very attractive at the time but I had this gut feeling. I had this pain in my side and one of my clients had this opportunity where he was saying, “There’s a company in Australia that we could bring across to Canada and it helps operators make more money.”

As I was working with these hundreds of operators across Ontario, across Canada, for Bacardi and Labatt, they looked busy. They were selling tons of my beer, they were on my top 10 list, the top 10 in beer volume in my territory, in my region, in my district. But when I met with the owner or sat with the manager, they were hurting, they were hemorrhaging money, they were on the verge of bankruptcy and many of them over time closed their doors and I didn’t understand why.

The breaking point for me, when I finally decided to make the jump from climbing the corporate ladder to supporting and coaching restaurants was when my largest account in one of my territories— they were probably one of the largest beer selling accounts in Canada— came to me and said, “Matt, we’re closing our doors.” I was floored.

On top of closing their doors, they were getting divorced. It was husband and wife who owned the business and the husband had a real big challenge in front of him. He was burnt out, he had put himself in a challenging environment with drinking too much, being in a restaurant. These successful people— how I looked at them— were crumbling on the back end, behind the curtain. As I talked to them, I just realized that what they went through, I felt responsible because I was pushing beer and telling them to sell it at a discount. I felt responsible for pushing a strategy that didn’t work, that was contributing to selling my beer and contributing to them not making money. I saw when I looked at all my clients in different areas— and this family that was essentially breaking apart— I saw the opportunity to really identify patterns, identify the root of the challenges that operators were facing and help them fix it. 

I transitioned from working for Labatt and Anheuser-Busch to a consulting company that focused on helping restaurants become more profitable. We could go into any restaurant in North America and find ways for them to put $100,000 to their bottom line inside of 12 months. Some of these restaurants at first were failing. If they didn’t fix this, they were going to go bankrupt but we very quickly transitioned to working with some of the top hotels, Ritz Carlton, Marriott, Sheridan’s to working with some of the most successful restaurant brands, seen as celebrity restaurant brands in the industry across North America. We can go into any operation and find a way to put a hundred thousand dollars to the bottom line.

That was sexy and fun but as we continued to grow that business, I realized it wasn’t the inventory that was changing the results. It wasn’t how we set up the POS system. It wasn’t the accountability processes that that business really focused on, our results hospitality company, that was making a difference. What we really were doing, what I was doing was coaching behavior change. Helping people identify what they wanted from their business and creating a strategy and execution focus strategy for them to achieve their desired results. 

About 10 years into results hospitality, we split the two companies and created Westshore Hospitality Group, which is where myself and others go out and focus on coaching people, supporting the leader, whether that’s the hospitality entrepreneur. Whether that’s a manager or director or regional manager inside of a multisite restaurant group or whether that’s a leader or leadership team, this international chain, helps them to really focus on how do they take care of themselves. How do they get grounded? How do they get in control of their calendar? How do they get clear on their goals? How do they communicate within their values to their team so everybody’s aware of what success looks like? How do they recognize that their growth can’t be dependent on them? And this isn’t me pushing my belief. Most of the leaders I meet within the most successful restaurants that I’ve ever had a chance to have exposure to are seeing great success, opening locations, growing sales, good profitability, healthy profitability but they’re drained and empty. They’re unsatisfied in their days, they’re no longer doing what they love. They haven’t had time with their friends or family in years. That is my career path and how we invest solely in working with those leaders, first with the senior leaders to get them clear and rated on themselves in their vision. And then how do we communicate, support the development, and coach people around us?

Just like the book’s title, we can’t do it alone. No matter how hard you’re working, at some point, in your business, you’re going to get to a point where you can’t do it. You can’t answer all the emails, you can’t work all the hours, you can’t support everybody around you. You’ll end up as I did as an entrepreneur and as many people I’ve seen around me; just end up overwhelmed, overcapacity, overworked, and really potentially unhappy.

Drew Appelbaum: Now, why was now the time to share the stories in the book? Was there something that really inspired you? Were you on the sidelines for a little bit because of COVID shutting everything down? Or did enough people come up to you and said, “Matt, you just need to write this process down”?

Matt Rolfe: It’s a great question. We did start writing the book prior to COVID shutting our industry down. I think it’s more relatable now than it was when we started this venture based on the challenge our industry has been forced into and what we have ahead in the coming months and years to recover. I really believe that it will take that long.

Why I wanted to share the story in my experiences and what we’ve been able to do with restaurants— and it’s not about us. It’s really about sharing how people can shift their leadership experience, their people, their teams to have a culture, an environment that they love while continuing to scale the restaurants. Why we do the work that we do is because I watched so many people that were hurting, that were overcapacity. They were overworked, they were overwhelmed inside their restaurants. Although they were successful, it wasn’t sustainable. It wasn’t something that they could continue with although they might have had lots of money, more locations coming, and more growth. 

When I got a chance to one-on-one coach some of the best leaders in North America and running some of the largest chains or seen as some of the most successful chains, I just saw an opportunity to share a message that if it could reach more people, could allow them to see that unlock, that “Aha!” moment, that hopefully could help them transition in their business. Help them ground themselves as a leader, help them really invest in their people so their experience as a restaurant owner, senior leader, or manager is sustainable. Because if they don’t make the shift, the reality is, there’s burnout. They leave our industry, they leave all their experience, all their passion, what they loved about it to find a more sustainable job, a more sustainable career, a more sustainable investment. I don’t feel that’s needed. I feel what is needed is owners and senior leaders understanding that they need to take care of themselves first. They need to invest in their self-care, their personal development, their vision, and their strategy. 

The key to scale any restaurant— whether it’s a large independent restaurant in any city in North America or a growing multisite chain,— the only way to do is to find people who believe what you believe, who sees your vision, who are as passionate about what you want to create as you are. Once we can do that and focus that energy and supply coaching and support, we really can create the experience that we desire and that we want, and that we deserve. If we don’t’ have a clear vision and strategy, grounded in execution, focus on our people… I’ve seen too many people experience success and failure at the same time if that makes sense, Drew.

Vision, Team, Strategy

Drew Appelbaum: What would you say are the top three challenges that are facing restaurant leaders today?

Matt Rolfe: That’s a really interesting question because I think what people want to hear is, recovering from COVID. The challenge is finding people for our restaurants. How do we pay the wages, how do we cover the increased food cost, how do we focus on tactics, things, activities? Stuff to do inside our business. That allows us to really control it and put it in a box. But what really challenging operators, the top challenges for operators today is one thing that we coach: If we want to truly support others, we need to first support ourselves. How do we have a conversation as a leadership team, how do we have a conversation with ourselves? Because the biggest challenge for most operators today is themselves. I don’t mean this in a disrespectful way, I mean this is a great and positive, an opportunity and an abundance way. How do we get clear as to what we want?

COVID was a major challenge but what it did is it really magnified preexisting challenges in our industry. This is gut-check time for owners. What do I really want from this business? Do I have the gas in the tank to put the effort in to recover? Who do I want to meet around me? What can I do and what do I need to let go of?

The first thing, the challenge in the industry is for the leader to really refocus. To bring their ideas and their vision back to a simple single page or a simple communication process so that we could share it with others so the people around us believe in our vision, believe in what we’re looking to do, believe that we can recover. That’s the first step. Because if we just go back to opening restaurants, we’ll see some success but over time, we’ll have disconnected people that will leave and we’re seeing those trends in the industry. 

The next step is once we get the leaders focused on what they want, what they see, what they believe is possible for their business, we need to get a team of people aligned around that. Whether you own a really large independent restaurant, 30 locations, or 300, we have to get more people, more humans involved in the execution of that strategy and the belief of that strategy than just in your leader. Whatever your position is listening to this podcast, if you’re a hospitality entrepreneur, senior leader, manager, GM, regional, whichever your title is, the key to success is you can’t do it alone, we need to get other people aligned. What do we do as individuals? What do we focus on as a team? Because right now, there’s more to do than we have hours in the day.

For a growing restaurant group, that still has cash in the bank, that has an opportunity in front of him, there’s more options, more ideas, more opportunity than we can do. We need to say no to certain things and need to focus on our people. That’s the second-biggest opportunity, is how do we focus and divide our people so we can go out and together, look to achieve, execute our vision, tackle our goals, and really make shit happen?

The third part is, we’ve got to have a people-focused strategy. From people who just started yesterday to people who had been with you since you opened up your doors. Everyone out there right now as we record this podcast is talking about recruiting and hiring so it’s “we need you, we’re hiring, join our team.” What we should really be talking about first, how do you retain the people that you have? How do you hug, how do you listen to, how do you reset, how do you heal with the team that you have inside your restaurant? The ones that came back, the ones that are still with you, the ones that are in the fight. Intention and experience of those people you have is critical. 

The next thing is, we have to have an attack strategy that creates a competitive point of difference. If you’re just posting job ads and expecting people to show up to your group interview, to your one-on-one interview, it’s not happening anymore. Need to talk about what your candidate wants, what they need, what’s your promise to the people that are going to join your team? 

The average restaurant has 60 percent of the required employees to operate in an ideal way. Basically, if you had 10 servers, we have six, and six people are expected to execute on the floor, If 10 people are needed in the kitchen, we’ve got six, everybody’s stretched. How are we going to recover from that, how are we going to build our teams back to what’s required? It takes a different approach. We’ve got some great strategies and questions for people to think through. Again, COVID didn’t bring this problem forward, it already existed. It just magnified an existing issue. Prior to COVID, the average restaurant experienced a hundred to 120 percent annual staff turnover, it’s the biggest cost to your business that’s not measured for most under PNL. If we give it some intention, business gets easier, people are happier and the impact on your staff and on your guests, based on the consistency, is remarkable. 

It’s not cash that you need to grow to get more locations. It’s not real estate. It’s not a beautiful design. I literally have clients who have tens of millions of dollars in the bank that aren’t growing right now because they don’t have the people. They’re holding until they do. So it’s not the location, it’s not the money, it’s not the design, it’s not the menu, it’s humans that are going to work inside the four walls of your restaurant. They’re going to create an experience that’s going to draw guests back time and time again to your restaurant to ensure you can survive, to ensure that you can grow, and to ensure that you can have a business that you want to continue and are proud of. I promise you, it’s possible.

In every major crisis, our industry has faced, in the last hundred years, somebody wins on the other side of it. Somebody won on the other side of the financial crisis. New multi-site restaurant groups popped up all over the world, all over North America. In my hometown of Toronto, we saw great new groups pop up and see huge success. We saw people that were successful before continue to grow and we saw a lot fail because they stuck to their old patterns their old behaviors and their old approaches. 

The question for you now is, what do you want to do? Because what we did prior to the pandemic to be successful won’t guarantee success in the future. If we do what we did to be successful previously, there’s a large chance— and for my business is to say, we had to pivot as well, but your business— it needs to change. It needs to adapt, and it needs to evolve, in a world that’s abundance, it’s not scarcity. It’s what do we choose to focus on what’s going to create the business that we want. That’s going to create the culture— and for the leaders listening to this— that’s going to create the balance, the satisfaction, the development in and the growth in which you do every day.

We spend more time on a daily basis at work than we do with our friends and family. I spend more time in my office, more time coaching my clients than I do with my kids, with my beautiful wife, with my golden retriever Gary. I have a mandate for self and core value that I’ve got to love what to do. A lot of people during COVID fell out of love with what they’re doing but we can find it again if we choose to change our approach. That starts with aligning our team to make sure we’re clear, aligned, engaged, and supporting our message, our vision, and our goals. And then how do we support our people? Retention first and then making sure we have an attack strategy that’s different than everybody else in the market right now. 

I’m really excited about it for our clients. We’re seeing great results, great recovery. It’s simple, but it’s just not easy. You’ve got to want it, put the work in and we’ll change the results. You’ve got a choice to win on the other side of this absolutely terrible and devastating situation for our industry.

Drew Appelbaum: In your mind, when you began the book, who were you writing this book for? Is this for someone who owns a local restaurant or owns a local pub? Is this for someone who already has a series of restaurants but is looking to scale that out to 10, 20, 30, 40 restaurants?

Matt Rolfe: This is something that we put a lot of thought into when we wrote the direction of the book and who I coach, support, and who our team coaches and supports. The book is directed at growing multisite restaurant groups, so what we call regional multisite restaurant groups. 

A lot of restaurant owners have one location and see success. They add another, they pass that success on and it’s really addition. It is a little bit harder but they are able to manage it. Once they get to three locations, five locations, ten locations, it’s not addition as they add more outlets, more revenue, more people. It really is multiplication of complexity. So, we wanted to pull it and target the content in the book to really support that growing restaurant operator. Whether it be the hospitality entrepreneur, a senior leader that’s managing a group of restaurants, or a GM that’s in charge of leading dozens, if not a hundred people to deliver the vision to execute the direction of the operation. 

Drew Appelbaum: For those small group restaurant owners or managers out there, what do you think is the right time to scale to go to that restaurant number from five to 10 or to take that leap, 10 to 15 and beyond? 

Matt Rolfe: Yeah, I think its timing is relative to their situation. One thing I coach is what is the age and stage of the operation? What I encourage people is, don’t grow for growth’s sake. Don’t just grow because you found a location. Don’t grow because you have money in the bank or you have a lineup of investors who believe in you who want to be a part of what you’ve created. I really coach people to have intentional growth. How does that growth add to your vision? How does the growth support what you are looking to accomplish, the communities that you’re looking to serve? 

When is the right time to grow is once we have a vision of how can we own, manage, lead a sustainable operation because if we don’t think about the people— and that’s the only way really to be sustainable. It is not cash, it is not location, it is not the design of a restaurant. It really is the people that we employ, that come on to our team, that we hand the keys to these locations to, that are going to determine the success or failure. I think the right time is once we find the people, the strategy to attract people who believe what we believe, see our vision, and will help us execute on a daily basis— once we have the bench, the grid, the lineup of people that want to join or people that are developing in a restaurant, then we attack. 

Sustainable Growth

Drew Appelbaum: What can happen when someone just sees success in their restaurant or small restaurant group and they over-extend and expand too quickly, as you mentioned, without the right people or with the wrong game plan? 

Matt Rolfe: What we see in so many cases with really successful brands in any major city across North America, we can always find examples. There was a really hot restaurant group that had one, two, three, five locations and then we blinked and they were gone. It’s so surprising. What happened? They were so busy, they seemed so successful and what happens is we overextend ourselves to where we don’t have people to support the restaurants, to lead the restaurants. Because usually at about three to five, especially five-plus locations, the operator or the hospitality entrepreneur or the leader that was part of that growth, part of that initial success, is no longer in the restaurants on a daily basis. They are often working on strategy, they might be working on cash flow, they might be working with partners or menus. They pull themselves out of the restaurants into an office unintentionally. They are almost victims to their own success. When they do that, they leave a gap and what happens if we leave a gap that we don’t coach to close— we don’t support the people, we don’t communicate with clarity— the restaurants stop operating the same way it did when we had three locations, the same way it did when its founding three owners were in the restaurants 20, 30, 40, 50 hours a week. 

Then as we grow, we see failure. We see employee turnover and very quickly, we see cash flow start to dry up. Then investors— a lot of people out there can relate to this— whether there is investors or a bank, they start to look for their money back sooner than we expected. They start to look for a return on their investment when it is just not there and then we overextend ourselves. That’s why the restaurant industry has an 80 percent failure rate. 80 percent of restaurants go bankrupt in their first three to five years. It’s a shocking statistic to a lot of people but there’s so much risk in our industry. It might seem attractive, it might seem sexy, it might seem exciting, but if we don’t have the right people strategy to operate these locations in a sustainable way, then the business often collapses over time. 

Drew Appelbaum: Now, you know the title of the book is You Can’t Do It Alone, and you’ve mentioned people a lot right now and so, I think I’d love to dig into consultants like yourself and consulting firms. What exactly and when is the right time to reach out for outside help in outside consulting and advice? 

Matt Rolfe: One thing that I position myself in the industry is there are a lot of consultants out there. There are people that have spent their lives in the industry running restaurants and I promise you, there are lots of better consultants in most major cities across North America than me. Really what we do as I see us— a separation from consultant and a shift of how we position ourselves to the clients that we support, to the quick service restaurants, to the independent restaurants, to the multisite or national chains— we really are coaches. I am a coach. My job is to ask the hard questions, ensure that our strategy is grounded in execution and not just entertaining. 

I think there is a lot of room for consultants and the right time to reach out and get outside support for a consultant might vary from a single location that needs a couple of tweaks to somebody who supports the operation and actually works in it with you. Our job as a coach is that coaches never go into court. If the strategies that we share in this book, if they were dependent on me as a consultant to execute, then we would fail. We don’t have the capacity to reach that many locations. 

What we want to do is provide solutions, proven strategies, simple processes that when implemented consistently will help a team, a leadership team of a multisite restaurant group get the results that they want and deserve. They have the focus, they have the effort, they have the talent, we’re just looking for the tweak. We’re looking to create or magnify the strategy, the transition, the vision, the goals that once focused on consistently will change the results. It will really allow a successful group to see that next step in their scale, that next step in their growth. That might mean more locations and— often what it means really, what we are looking to support— it might be more balance for the owner who’s working 70 hours a week, who’s burnt out, who hasn’t spent time with friends and family in weeks or months or really in a present way in years. Or the senior leader or general manager that is working as hard as they can but their life really is work and when it comes to friends, family, and self-care, they find themselves empty. We know with the focus today on mental health and the challenges, burnout, overwork, and disconnection, it’s really a risk for those individuals. It doesn’t have to be that way. 

The right time to reach out for a consultant or how we see ourselves, a coach, can be when we’re really open that we’re working harder than we should be. We have the right team and people but we seem just a little bit frayed on our results. We are getting 80 percent of the way there. We have lots of great ideas, lots of priorities, lots of opportunities but we are not getting what we want or feel that we need or we should in our business. Somebody who is open to taking a different look, having a different approach, being open to a new strategy. 

My job is not to give – this book isn’t going to give you just the direct answer of what you should do in X situation. It is going to provide examples of top-performing operators, the top 10 percent of the industry, who have been in situations of overwhelm and in situations of extreme turnover. Who have been in situations of absolute burnout whether it be the leaders, the staff, or the ownership. What they were able to do to tweak their focus, their routine, their strategy and see the effect of that on their entire team. 

I find that most restaurants are working way harder than they need to, to get the result that they have right now, to get the successful results, the successful progress, the growth that they have right now. It’s just harder than it needs to be, it could be or should be. With a slight adjustment, a want to make it easier, a want to have balance, surrender to the fact that we can’t sustain what we are doing right now, the hours that we’re doing right now. That’s the focus of You Can’t Do It Alone. 

There is a point where a leader goes, “I’m seeing great results but I don’t know if I can continue to do this. I don’t know if I have the next five years, the next three years, the next 20 years in my career to work as hard as I am right now. What can I do to develop people around me? To take care of myself first, to tweak our approach, to make sure that we can grow but also have satisfaction on our jobs on a daily basis?” 

Post-COVID: Is This the New Normal? Can We Rebound?

Drew Appelbaum: I’d like to just touch on the fact of what happened with the coronavirus and the restaurant/bar industry. I would love your expertise, has the industry seen any kind of dip or something like this before with everything closed, people laid off, and just forcing restaurant owners, restaurant groups to pivot and reinvest in things like outdoor seating and take out? Can we expect things to rebound and normalize? 

Matt Rolfe: Yeah, there is a lot in that question and that’s a great question. It’s one that everyone is asking right now, especially those looking at the industry to see what do we do. How do we recover? 

The way that I look at it is, I see COVID, the pandemic like open-heart surgery. COVID was the diagnosis, there is something wrong that if we don’t fix it is going to have a dramatic effect on the world. And surgery really was when they cracked us open. They cracked our ribs open, they opened us up. What that looked like for the restaurant industry was they shut us down. And across North America— obviously some states and provinces longer than others— but they shut us down. That really was the surgery part; the raw part, the cutting open, the pain. Now, we’ve seen our industry reopen, so they’ve closed our ribs up, they’ve stitched us up, and our doors are open but we haven’t had time to heal yet. 

Right now we’re open and there’s guests coming into our restaurants, there is a lot of tension, there is staff that don’t feel safe. There’s guests that want to or don’t want to wear a mask, there are guests who want to have proof of vaccination, and some that absolutely believe that they shouldn’t have to do that. All of this, what we’re experience through COVID, really was extremely hard but I hate to say this— and I am saying this respectfully— it was the easy part. 

The hard part for everybody in the restaurant industry really is ahead of us. The next three or four months of 2021 and the real challenge will hit in Q1 and Q2 of 2022 when we see the impact of guests returning or not. We see the impact of limited seating, we see the impact of staff not returning. Because some of what we were experiencing when the pandemic happened and the industry shut down, the restaurant associations were predicting that 50 percent of restaurants would close due to the pandemic, to never reopen their doors again. Drew, can you imagine that you’re located in your hometown, 50 percent of the restaurants going dark? 

Drew Appelbaum: No, that will leave half the block. It would be very dark in every block. 

Matt Rolfe: If you look at any major city, it’s got a lot of offices, new office towers, a lot of people driving in. Those financial districts or downtown courses really did experience that. We are seeing the shutdown. They are seeing 50 percent of locations potentially not reopen but the stats get scarier as we reopen and seeing what we are seeing now. 

Based on the labor shortage, restaurant operators are seeing an increase, on average, an increase in required labor or salaries of 16 percent. In order to attract people just at a base level, we’ve seen wages go up 16 percent and I believe it was a required transition. It was a required forcing function for change that was needed for the people working in restaurants. But the reality is, most restaurants aren’t making 16 percent. Most are making single digits and many across North America are making less than 5 percent. So, with the increase in labor wages, that’s a major challenge that we’re facing now. 

We’re seeing most restaurants are about 50 to 60 percent staffing capacity. So, the timing for the book, the message that we are looking to put out around strategy and vision grounded in people, you know, if we are 60 percent staffed, we do need a people strategy. Because right now the leverage is on the side— and I love that situation because it will create results. It will create growth, it will create change that was needed— but the leverage is with the employee. It is with the host, the server, the bar manager because there is less of them than there are jobs. If you want to thrive or survive through COVID, you’re really going to need to think about how do you support, develop, listen to, communicate to your staff. Because if these shortages continue, our restaurants can’t operate. 

Drew Appelbaum: Well, Matt, we just touched on the surface of the book here. There is so much more in there in terms of how to lead your business correctly but I just want to say that writing a book just like this that’s going to help out the ailing hospitality industry is no small feat, so congratulations on having your book published. 

Matt Rolfe: Thank you very much. It was a challenging process but it was very rewarding. It was something that forced us to really think about the solutions that were needed, the pain points in the industry. We went out and had a lot of conversations, hundreds of conversations with leaders and restaurants across North America to find out what they were really challenged with, what was keeping them up at night, what they felt they needed to make it through COVID but really to keep themselves in our industry. We found patterns of responses and we shape the content of the book thinking about the audience. 

It is not a book of what we do or what I do or our processes. It is a book of sharing what leaders have done to achieve remarkable results, balance, scale, profitability but more importantly, happy and positive cultures. That’s what we really want to come across to the reader and it is an execution-focused book. Everything we do is grounded in execution, so it is not strategy and ideas. We’re going to give you the tools, the downloadable documents. We have a video series should you choose to look at that, where you can go through how to implement all the core exercises that are outlined in the book. Our goal is not just to put content out there but, to help with strategy that allows people to change their patterns, change their behaviors and change their results. That’s our hope. 

Drew Appelbaum: This has been a pleasure and I’m excited for people to check out the book. Everyone, the book is called, You Can’t Do It Alone, and you could find it on Amazon. Matt, besides checking out the book, can you give us the website where folks can find more resources that you just mentioned? Also, is there anywhere else where you’d like people to connect with you? 

Matt Rolfe: Absolutely, the best place to connect first off would be on LinkedIn. You could find my LinkedIn profile at Matt Rolfe. We put content out daily. It is actionable content of videos, articles on a daily basis. It is a commitment of ours to support the industry based on what’s happening now, so the content is shot live. It is shot based on what we’re hearing in the market, what we’re seeing of COVID recovery. In LinkedIn, you’ll get live content. 

You can go to Westshore Hospitality to find out more about our online course. And it is not just another course, the content we’ve created is an interactive experience. There are over two hours of video content, there are over 35 downloadable assets, tools that you can teach your management team to help implement strategy, to discuss strategy, to consolidate ideas, and to help to communicate what you’re looking to do to the rest of your managers and to your staff. 

We also have a sister company Results Hospitalitythat’s where we started where we help restaurants become more profitable. We have the ability to go to, you’ll be able to find a health check assessment that will allow you to think through your business, really what is happening, give yourself a score, find out where the opportunity exists and then the team will provide you free tools to help you put focus on what matters most. What if your change would have the biggest impact on your profitability or your guest experience today? 

Drew Appelbaum: Well, Matt, thank you so much for giving us some of your time today, and wish you nothing but the best of luck with your new book. 

Matt Rolfe: Thank you so much for having me, Drew.