Author Archives: Big Dave Ostrander

Ask Big Dave: Supplier Discounts

2012 December: Ask Big Dave

Q: Do you know of any independents grouping together to get discounts with suppliers? Darren Larson AllStar Pizza, Clute, Texas A: For the most part, suppliers are not keen on pricing with a loose group of independents. They are looking for groups that have been around for a while and have the authority to speak/representMore »

CSR That First Impression

If I had to choose between the best counter and phone person or the best pizza maker, I choose the best customer service rep. Pizza makers are made through a mentoring training program. You make and shape them into pizza assembly machines. On the other hand, I believe that CSR’s are a blend of trainingMore »

Ask Big Dave: Dough Rounding

dough balls, dough stacking, dough storage

Q: We currently make up our dough, round it and put it in baggies. We use it within a couple of days, and this works well for us. My question is: Do we need the rounding step, or could we just cut and bag? Eliminating the rounding step could save a substantial amount of timeMore »

Thrive in the Pizza Biz

The pizza business is currently drifting in unchartered waters. The old model of making, baking and serving a praiseworthy pizza with a smile just isn’t enough to pay the bills anymore. What are we to do to prosper in the future? I’ve heard this question a thousand times at International Pizza Expo and other eventsMore »

To Catch An Employee Thief

I’ll never forget the night it happened. It was dinnertime on a Friday night. My best-ever crew was getting ready for the rush and I had all of my aces in their places. I realized that I had forgotten to restock the petty cash box with small bills and change. No problem, the bank drive-thru doesn’t close forMore »

2012 October: Ask Big Dave

2012 October: Ask Big Dave

We are expanding our restaurant from one to two locations. Our second location is three miles away from the first in a small town. We are very concerned about logistics relating to deliveries. Do we divide the town or hope that some custom­ers just call the second location? Do you have any independent pizza shopsMore »

Menu Pricing & Food Costs

Menu Pricing & Food Costs

If you don’t know what it costs to make your pizza, how do you know your menu prices are where they should be? In the last month I’ve presented workshops and seminars to several thousand owner-operators in eight cities. The overriding theme of the seminars is getting back to restaurant business basics. In every singleMore »

Power Purchasing

Purchasing

Purchasing is the second leg of the profit triangle What is the first question you ask your sales rep every week? I’ll bet it isn’t weather or family related. I’d bet it goes like this: “How much is cheese this week?” I stopped asking the big question in 1989, after I was educated on aMore »

Operator Expense Breakdown

Operator Expense Breakdown

Chances are, your employees think you strike it rich with each sale. They don’t realize you have to keep your lights on, buy more cheese and market to keep customers. If you make a $10 sale, they think you’re putting $10 in your pocket. Boy, wouldn’t a 100 percent profit margin be nice? If youMore »

New Year Strategy

New Year Strategy

It’s time to think strategically about the new year. If you want to achieve growth you need to organize your tasks, set clear goals and implement a plan of attack. Each business has different needs, but there are some things all operators should take into consideration when making their New Year’s Resolutions. Here, then, isMore »