Oscar Wilde once very eloquently explained, “I regard theater as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being.” That sentiment about the stage resonates with the aspiration every sincere restaurant owner and operator has for his or her guests as well—to provide a genuine and powerful experience to each visitor that joins them. So, let’s take a moment to appreciate everything that goes into creating a memorable performance that guests will rave about to their friends and family—and what all this might have to do with the passion we have at FLAT® for each of the products we’ve developed.
Casting Your Play
Every good play starts with a strong director. In a restaurant, that is the head chef. Their goal is to create an experience that resonates with guests and further reflects their own skill and passion for the craft. Your chef has spent meticulous planning time creating a menu—the screenplay for your performance—and employing the staff they believe will be able to best serve their goals.
The backstage kitchen team works in harmony to create an amazing and consistent performance with every plate. The actors, in the case of a restaurant, are all the ingredients that have been selected to make each dish delight and engross the guests.
The front of house staff are all tirelessly trained to ensure that visitors are cared for and prepared to have a unique experience, standing at the ready to help each guest feel welcomed and grow their anticipation for what has been prepared.
There’s likely been a great investment in the theater décor to ensure that your restaurant has the correct atmosphere to spotlight the beauty and pageantry of the meal to come. Everything has been designed to help prepare each guest for one of the oldest and most powerful shared experiences—a thoughtfully and well-prepared meal with others.
All this investment comes from the restaurant owner’s belief that good food in a well-designed setting has the potential to create a human experience that can positively impact people’s lives. It is a noble pursuit that deserves the admiration and respect of anyone.
Here’s the Rub
How many times have you heard a friend or family member discussing a play or musical they’ve attended mention the actual physical stage? It rarely—or never—happens, right? The entire goal of a well organized performance is to make the actual stage disappear. For the theater-goers to be transported into the story of the play, the stage needs to become completely invisible. That is usually the first—and completely assumed—expectation an audience has of the theater. It’s never requested, it is just assumed in the transaction.
Now, let’s imagine that you are a theater owner, or operator, and have made all the vital decisions mentioned above to open a new play and ensure it becomes a commercial success. However, as soon as the first actor steps onto your stage, the floor creaks loudly and the performers trip over uneven boards and possibly fall during a critical soliloquy in your play. Perhaps pieces of your stage decoration or props fall over as actors are moving around because the flooring is moving under their feet. Worse yet, imagine if your stage pitches wildly and throws an actor into the crowd?! What if a stage carpenter was coming out in the middle of your cast’s performance to nail down boards that were sticking up or having to reset your stage decor? Does it really matter at that point how good the thespians are that you’ve hired for your show? Do you think that the audience will be impressed with the director’s meticulous crafting of the story and performances?
If this was your play, would you consider it to be a success? I know it sounds like a silly illustration, but FLAT® believes passionately that this is exactly what many restaurant owners and operators are doing on a daily basis—while wondering why their guests are reluctant to return or recommend them to their friends and family. It sounds absurd, but this is exactly the impact that wobbly and misaligned tables could have on the overall experience and success of your business.
Set the Stage
The dining table is the stage upon which your competence, craft, and culinary artistry will be judged each time a guest comes through your door. All the careful considerations about the menu, staff, and environment count as very little if the very platform at which your guests are invited to have their experience doesn’t seem capable of doing the one thing it is supposed to do. Wobbly tables are the absolute bane of a dining experience, whether in a quick service restaurant or a fine dining establishment. No one talks about how stable their table was when they went out to eat with friends and family because it is assumed as a fundamental part of their experience.
FLAT® self-stabilizing table bases, or retrofit FLAT Equalizers are perfect solutions that ensure your tables do their job for every single guest. Our patented technology located underneath our table bases provides a solid and stable platform that automatically adjusts to uneven floors and then locks into place without the need for constant adjustments on the part of your staff. If you have existing tables that are wobbling or problematic, you can invest in FLAT® Equalizers to solve the issue quickly and economically. Equalizers are innovative table feet that replace the traditional screw-in adjustable table feet and stabilize the table with a gentle press on the table top. Both sets of products also allow users to uniquely align adjoining tables when placing tables together for groups, creating a perfect dining experience.
If you desire to create a memorable and positive experience for your audience, you have to ensure they have a proper stage. FLAT® products are used by a number of the world’s leading brands helping them to focus on the performance and story they want to tell to guests—without having to worry about a flop caused by a sloppy stage.
To learn more about FLAT® and our vast catalog of table options, contact one of our helpful representatives who will happily discuss your needs and concerns with you and help you find the perfect products for each of your locations. We are ready to help you make the most of every customer’s visit. Now, on with the show!