25 Restaurant Supervisor Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a restaurant supervisor, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

Restaurant supervisors are responsible for the smooth operation of their establishment. They make sure that waitstaff are taking care of customers, that the kitchen is preparing food correctly, and that the restaurant is clean. They may also be responsible for ordering food and supplies, and for training new employees.

If you’re looking for a job as a restaurant supervisor, you’ll need to be prepared to answer some questions about your experience and your ability to handle difficult situations. In this article, we’ll provide you with some sample questions and answers that will help you prepare for your interview.

Common Restaurant Supervisor Interview Questions

1. Are you familiar with the local competition and how do you plan to stay ahead of them?

As a supervisor, you need to be aware of the competition and how your restaurant can stay ahead. This question helps employers understand if you have experience with this process and what strategies you plan to use. In your answer, explain which restaurants are in the area and why they pose a threat. Then, share two or three ways that you would help your restaurant overcome these challenges.

Example: “Yes, I am very familiar with the local competition. I stay up to date on their menu offerings and pricing, as well as any promotions or specials they are running. This helps me understand what our customers may be looking for when they come in.

I also make sure that we offer a superior customer experience at our restaurant by providing attentive service, quality food, and an inviting atmosphere. I believe these factors will help us stand out from the competition and keep customers coming back.

In addition, I’m always looking for ways to innovate and create new experiences for our guests. Whether it’s introducing unique dishes, hosting special events, or offering discounts, I strive to give our customers something different than what they can get elsewhere.”

2. What are some of the most important qualities that a restaurant supervisor should have?

Employers ask this question to make sure you have the right skills and experience for the job. They want someone who is organized, friendly and hardworking. When answering this question, think about what qualities helped you succeed in your previous roles. Try to focus on specific examples of how these traits helped you achieve success.

Example: “As a restaurant supervisor, it is important to have strong leadership skills and the ability to motivate employees. A successful supervisor should be able to communicate effectively with both staff and customers, as well as maintain a positive attitude in any situation. It is also essential for a supervisor to possess excellent organizational and problem-solving skills, so that they can manage tasks efficiently and resolve conflicts quickly. Finally, a good supervisor should have an understanding of health regulations and safety procedures to ensure that all standards are met.

I believe I possess all of these qualities, which I have developed through my experience working in restaurants. My background includes managing teams of up to 20 people, ensuring customer satisfaction, and resolving issues promptly. I am confident that I would make a great addition to your team as a Restaurant Supervisor.”

3. How would you handle a situation where a member of your staff was not meeting the company’s standards of performance?

An interviewer may ask this question to assess your leadership skills and how you would handle a situation where an employee was not meeting the company’s standards. In your answer, try to show that you are willing to hold your staff accountable for their performance while also being empathetic to their needs.

Example: “If a member of my staff was not meeting the company’s standards of performance, I would first take the time to understand why they were struggling. It could be due to lack of training or understanding of expectations. If it is an issue with their skillset, I would provide additional training and guidance to help them improve.

I would also make sure that I am providing clear direction and feedback on their progress. This will ensure that they know what is expected of them and how they can meet those expectations. Finally, I would set up regular check-ins with the team member so that we can track their progress and adjust our approach if needed.”

4. What is your process for evaluating the success of your restaurant’s current practices and making improvements where necessary?

This question is an opportunity to show your ability to analyze data and make informed decisions. Your answer should include a specific example of how you used data to improve the restaurant’s operations.

Example: “When evaluating the success of my restaurant’s current practices, I focus on three main areas: customer satisfaction, operational efficiency, and financial performance. First, I review customer feedback to ensure that our guests are having a positive experience. This includes looking at online reviews, conducting surveys, and speaking with customers directly. Second, I evaluate operational efficiency by measuring key metrics such as wait times, order accuracy, and employee turnover rates. Finally, I analyze financial performance to identify opportunities for cost savings or increased revenue.

Once I have identified areas of improvement, I create action plans to address them. These plans typically involve making changes to processes or procedures, implementing new technologies, or training staff. My goal is always to maximize efficiency while maintaining the highest standards of quality. I also strive to keep up with industry trends so that we can stay ahead of the competition.”

5. Provide an example of a time when you had to manage a budget for your restaurant and explain how you decided which expenses to cut and which to allow.

Interviewers may ask this question to learn more about your financial management skills and how you prioritize spending. When answering, try to focus on the process of budgeting rather than the final outcome.

Example: “I have had extensive experience managing budgets for restaurants. For example, when I was a Restaurant Supervisor at my previous job, I was tasked with creating and managing the restaurant’s budget. To do this, I first identified all of our expenses and then evaluated each one to determine which ones were necessary and which could be cut or reduced.

I started by looking at our overhead costs such as rent, utilities, and payroll. These are essential expenses that cannot be eliminated, so I focused on reducing them wherever possible. I negotiated better rates with our vendors and suppliers and worked with the landlord to get a lower rent rate. I also looked for ways to reduce labor costs without compromising quality of service.

Once I had addressed the fixed costs, I moved onto variable costs like food, beverages, and supplies. Here, I was able to identify areas where we could save money without sacrificing quality. I implemented cost-saving measures such as bulk purchasing, using coupons, and negotiating discounts with suppliers.”

6. If you could only choose one, which would you consider to be your strongest area of expertise when it comes to restaurant supervision?

This question is a great way for employers to learn more about your skills and experience. When answering this question, it can be helpful to identify an area of expertise that you feel passionate about or have developed over time.

Example: “When it comes to restaurant supervision, I believe my strongest area of expertise is customer service. As a Restaurant Supervisor, I understand that the customer experience is paramount and I strive to ensure that all customers are treated with respect and receive excellent service. My experience in this field has taught me how to handle difficult situations while maintaining a professional demeanor. I have also developed strong communication skills which allow me to effectively communicate with both staff and customers alike.

I am confident in my ability to provide outstanding customer service and take pride in ensuring that each customer leaves feeling satisfied. I am passionate about creating an enjoyable atmosphere for everyone who visits the restaurant and will go above and beyond to make sure that their needs are met. Finally, I am able to manage large groups of people efficiently and delegate tasks accordingly.”

7. What would you do if you noticed that a member of your wait staff was consistently taking longer than average to deliver food to customers?

This question can help interviewers understand how you handle employee performance issues. Use your answer to highlight your ability to coach employees and improve their skills.

Example: “If I noticed that a member of my wait staff was consistently taking longer than average to deliver food to customers, the first thing I would do is talk to them privately and ask if there are any issues they need help with. It could be something as simple as needing more training or clarification on certain tasks. If it’s an issue that can be easily addressed, I’d work with them to find a solution.

If the issue persists after addressing it, then I would take further action by monitoring their performance and providing additional coaching and feedback. I believe in being proactive when it comes to employee development and helping them become better at their job. Finally, if necessary, I would look into disciplinary measures such as warnings or suspensions depending on the severity of the situation.”

8. How well do you perform under pressure and how do you maintain a calm demeanor when things start to get hectic in the restaurant?

When an interviewer asks you this question, they want to know how well you can handle a busy shift and still maintain your composure. This is because working in the restaurant industry often means having to multitask while also managing employees who are also trying to do their jobs. Your answer should show that you have experience with handling pressure and can remain calm under stress.

Example: “I am an experienced Restaurant Supervisor and I have a proven track record of performing well under pressure. When things start to get hectic in the restaurant, I remain calm and focused on the task at hand. I prioritize tasks and delegate responsibilities to my team members so that we can work together efficiently. I also take a few moments to assess the situation and come up with a plan of action to address any issues quickly and effectively. Finally, I make sure to communicate clearly with my staff so that everyone is aware of their roles and expectations. This helps us stay organized and ensures that all tasks are completed in a timely manner.”

9. Do you have any experience training new employees on how to perform their duties or teaching current staff how to improve their work performance?

An interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your leadership skills and how you can help others succeed in their roles. Use examples from past experiences where you helped new employees learn the ropes or coached current staff on improving their performance.

Example: “Yes, I have experience training new employees and teaching current staff how to improve their work performance. In my previous role as a Restaurant Supervisor, I was responsible for onboarding all new hires and providing them with the necessary training to be successful in their roles. I also conducted regular performance reviews with each team member to ensure that they were meeting expectations and had the resources needed to succeed. During these meetings, I provided feedback on areas of improvement and offered guidance on how to meet goals. This approach helped create an environment where everyone felt supported and motivated to do their best work.”

10. When is it appropriate to offer customers a complimentary item or beverage?

Interviewers may ask this question to assess your customer service skills. They want to know how you interact with customers and whether you can provide excellent customer service while also maintaining profitability for the restaurant. In your answer, explain when it’s appropriate to offer a complimentary item or beverage and what factors influence that decision.

Example: “It is important to know when it is appropriate to offer customers a complimentary item or beverage. In my experience as a Restaurant Supervisor, I have found that offering complimentary items or beverages can be an effective way to show appreciation for customer loyalty and build relationships with them.

In order to determine when it is appropriate to offer complimentary items or beverages, I consider the customer’s spending habits and frequency of visits. If they are a regular customer who spends a significant amount each visit, then I will often offer them something special on their next visit. This could be anything from a free drink or appetizer to a discount on their meal.

I also take into account any special occasions or events that may be occurring in the restaurant. For example, if there is a birthday celebration taking place, I might offer a complimentary dessert or glass of champagne to the guest of honor. By doing this, I am showing appreciation for the customer while also creating a memorable experience.”

11. We want to increase customer satisfaction. What would you do to improve our restaurant’s customer service?

Customer service is an important aspect of any restaurant. Employers ask this question to see if you have ideas for improving their customer service and overall experience. In your answer, explain how you would implement these changes. Show that you are a problem solver who can make the necessary improvements to ensure customers leave happy.

Example: “I believe that customer satisfaction is the key to a successful restaurant. To improve our restaurant’s customer service, I would focus on three main areas: staff training, communication and feedback.

Firstly, I would ensure that all staff members are properly trained in customer service best practices. This includes teaching them how to greet customers warmly, handle complaints professionally, and provide excellent food and beverage service.

Secondly, I would create an open line of communication between staff and management. This will allow us to quickly address any customer issues or concerns that arise.

Lastly, I would implement a system for collecting customer feedback. This could be through surveys, comment cards, or even social media reviews. By actively seeking out customer feedback, we can identify areas where we need to improve and make sure that our customers have a positive experience every time they visit our restaurant.”

12. Describe your experience with using POS systems and other technology used in the food service industry.

The interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your experience with technology and how you use it in the workplace. Use examples from your previous job or a time when you used technology to help improve your work performance.

Example: “I have extensive experience with POS systems and other technology used in the food service industry. I have been working as a Restaurant Supervisor for the past five years, and during that time I have become proficient in using various POS systems. I am comfortable troubleshooting any issues that may arise with these systems, and I can quickly learn new software if needed.

In addition to my experience with POS systems, I also have knowledge of other technologies commonly used in restaurants. This includes kitchen display systems, inventory management tools, and customer loyalty programs. I understand how each of these technologies works, and I am able to train staff on their use. I am confident that I could help your restaurant take advantage of all the latest technological advances to improve efficiency and customer satisfaction.”

13. What makes you the best candidate for this restaurant supervisor position?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your qualifications and how you feel about the job. Before your interview, make a list of all your skills and experiences that relate to the position. Think about what makes you unique from other candidates and highlight these qualities in your answer.

Example: “I believe I am the best candidate for this restaurant supervisor position because of my extensive experience in the industry. I have been working in restaurants for over 10 years, and during that time I have gained a deep understanding of all aspects of restaurant operations. My knowledge spans from customer service to food safety, menu development, and staff management.

In addition to my expertise, I also bring strong leadership skills to the table. I have managed teams of up to 20 people at once, and I know how to motivate them to work together as a cohesive unit. I understand the importance of creating an environment where everyone feels respected and appreciated, which is essential for any successful restaurant.”

14. Which restaurant management techniques do you prefer and why?

This question can help the interviewer understand your management style and how you would approach a variety of tasks in their restaurant. Your answer should reflect your personal preferences, but it’s also important to explain why you prefer those techniques over others.

Example: “I prefer a management style that is focused on communication and collaboration. I believe in creating an open dialogue between myself, my staff, and the customers to ensure everyone’s needs are met. This means actively listening to feedback from all parties involved, taking action when necessary, and providing clear direction for employees.

I also prioritize organization and efficiency in the restaurant. By utilizing systems such as scheduling software and inventory tracking, I can help streamline processes and make sure everything runs smoothly. Finally, I strive to create a positive work environment by recognizing employee achievements, encouraging teamwork, and rewarding good performance. These techniques have helped me successfully manage restaurants in the past and I am confident they will do the same at this new job.”

15. What do you think is the most important aspect of restaurant supervision?

This question is your opportunity to show the interviewer that you understand what it means to be a restaurant supervisor. Use this question as an opportunity to explain how you would use your skills and experience to help the team succeed in their goals.

Example: “As a Restaurant Supervisor, I believe the most important aspect of restaurant supervision is ensuring that all staff members are providing excellent customer service. This means creating an environment where customers feel welcomed and valued, and where their needs are met in a timely manner. It also involves monitoring staff performance to ensure they are following proper procedures and policies, as well as addressing any customer complaints or issues promptly and professionally. Finally, it’s essential to maintain high standards of cleanliness and safety throughout the restaurant. By doing these things, I can ensure that customers have a positive experience at our restaurant and come back again.”

16. How often do you make mistakes?

Employers ask this question to learn about your self-awareness. They want to know that you are able to recognize when you make a mistake and how you fix it. In your answer, try to be honest about the mistakes you have made in the past and what steps you took to correct them.

Example: “Making mistakes is a part of any job, but I strive to make as few as possible. I believe that it’s important to learn from my mistakes and use them to improve my performance in the future. As a Restaurant Supervisor, I take pride in being able to quickly identify errors and correct them before they become larger issues. I also have an open-door policy with my staff so that if there are any problems or mistakes, we can address them together. This helps me stay on top of potential issues and ensure that our restaurant runs smoothly.”

17. There is a line at the counter. What do you do?

This question is a great way to test your customer service skills. It also shows the interviewer how you prioritize tasks and manage time. Your answer should include steps that show you are organized, efficient and can multitask.

Example: “When I’m faced with a line at the counter, my first priority is to ensure that customers are being served in an efficient and timely manner. To do this, I would assess the situation and determine how many staff members are available to help. If there aren’t enough people working, I would quickly assign additional staff members to assist.

I also believe it’s important to provide excellent customer service during these times. I would make sure that customers are greeted promptly and that their orders are taken accurately. I would also be sure to check in on customers throughout the process to ensure they’re satisfied with their experience. Finally, I would work with the staff to keep the line moving as quickly as possible while still providing quality service.”

18. How do you motivate your staff?

Motivation is an important skill for a restaurant supervisor. It helps you keep your staff motivated and productive, which in turn helps the business succeed. Your interviewer may ask this question to learn more about how you can help your team members do their best work. In your answer, try to explain what motivates you and how it might motivate others.

Example: “Motivating staff is an important part of being a successful Restaurant Supervisor. I believe in setting clear expectations and providing ongoing feedback to ensure that my team members are on track with their goals. I also like to recognize individual accomplishments and reward employees for their hard work. By doing this, it encourages them to continue striving for excellence and motivates them to do their best.

I have found that creating a positive work environment where everyone feels respected and valued is key to keeping morale high. I make sure to take time to get to know each employee so that I can understand what drives them and how they prefer to be motivated. This helps me tailor my approach to each person’s needs. Finally, I strive to stay up-to-date on industry trends and provide training opportunities whenever possible so that my staff can develop professionally and stay engaged in their work.”

19. Describe a time when you had to make a difficult decision in the restaurant.

When an interviewer asks you a question like this, they want to know how you make decisions and what your thought process is. This can help them understand if you’re qualified for the position and whether or not you’ll be able to handle it well. When answering this question, try to think of a time when you had to make a tough decision that affected many people.

Example: “I recently had to make a difficult decision while working as a Restaurant Supervisor. I was responsible for managing the staff and ensuring that all operations ran smoothly. One day, one of my employees came to me with an issue they were having with another employee. The two were arguing over who should be assigned to which tasks.

After listening to both sides of the story, I realized that neither of them was completely wrong or right. It was clear that this situation needed to be resolved quickly in order to keep the restaurant running efficiently. After considering all options, I decided to assign each of them different tasks so that they could work together without any further conflict.

This decision wasn’t easy but it was necessary in order to maintain the peace in the workplace. Ultimately, my decision worked out well since the two employees were able to complete their tasks without any further issues. This experience has taught me how important it is to remain impartial when making decisions in the restaurant.”

20. What strategies have you used to manage inventory and track food costs?

Inventory management and food cost tracking are two important responsibilities of a restaurant supervisor. Interviewers may ask this question to see if you have experience with these processes. Use your answer to highlight any specific strategies or systems you’ve used in the past.

Example: “I have developed several strategies to manage inventory and track food costs. First, I ensure that all orders are placed in a timely manner so that there is no over-ordering or under-ordering of items. This helps me keep the restaurant’s inventory levels balanced and accurate. Second, I regularly review invoices from suppliers to make sure that we are getting the best prices for our products. Finally, I use software programs to help me track food costs and analyze trends in order to identify areas where cost savings can be made. By utilizing these strategies, I am able to effectively manage inventory and track food costs while keeping the restaurant profitable.”

21. Do you think communication is important between the supervisor and employees?

The interviewer may ask this question to learn more about your communication skills and how you use them in the workplace. Use examples from past experiences where you used effective communication with employees or coworkers to answer this interview question.

Example: “Absolutely. Communication is one of the most important aspects of any successful team, and as a Restaurant Supervisor I understand that it’s essential to have open lines of communication between myself and my employees. By creating an environment of trust and understanding, I can ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals. I also believe in providing feedback to my employees so they know what areas they need to improve upon and where they are excelling. This helps them stay motivated and engaged with their work. Finally, I strive to be available for questions and concerns from my staff so that they feel comfortable coming to me when needed.”

22. In what ways have you contributed to increasing sales or reducing losses?

This question can help the interviewer understand your ability to make decisions that benefit the restaurant. Use examples from previous roles where you helped increase sales or reduce losses, and explain how those actions benefited your employer’s business.

Example: “I have a track record of success in increasing sales and reducing losses. In my current role as Restaurant Supervisor, I implemented several strategies to increase sales and reduce losses. First, I developed an effective system for tracking inventory levels and ordering new supplies when needed. This allowed us to ensure that we had the right amount of stock on hand at all times, which helped us avoid overstocking or running out of items.

Additionally, I worked closely with our marketing team to create targeted promotions and discounts that increased customer engagement and ultimately drove more sales. Finally, I was able to identify areas where we were losing money due to inefficient processes or outdated systems and worked with management to implement changes that reduced these losses.”

23. How would you handle customer complaints?

As a restaurant supervisor, you may need to handle customer complaints. Employers ask this question to see if you have the skills and experience needed to resolve issues with customers. Use your answer to show that you can be empathetic while also remaining professional.

Example: “I understand the importance of customer service in a restaurant setting and take customer complaints seriously. When I receive a complaint, my first priority is to listen carefully to the customer’s concerns and try to identify the root cause of the issue. Once I have identified the problem, I work quickly to resolve it. I always strive to provide a solution that meets the customer’s satisfaction while also being within the guidelines of the restaurant policy.

In addition, I make sure to document all customer complaints so that we can track any recurring issues or trends. This helps us to better address customer needs and improve our services in the future. Finally, I ensure that customers are thanked for bringing their concerns to our attention as this shows them that we value their feedback and appreciate their business.”

24. Are there any areas of restaurant supervision that you feel need improvement?

This question is a great way for employers to learn more about your leadership skills. When answering this question, it can be beneficial to mention an area of improvement that you have already worked on or are currently working on. This shows the employer that you are actively trying to improve yourself and your team.

Example: “Yes, I believe there are areas of restaurant supervision that can be improved. One area is communication between the front-of-house and back-of-house staff. As a supervisor, it’s important to ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to orders, customer service expectations, and overall operations.

Another area where improvement could be made is in training and development. It’s essential for supervisors to provide employees with the necessary resources and guidance they need to succeed in their roles. This includes creating an environment where employees feel comfortable asking questions and receiving feedback. Finally, I think it’s important to stay up-to-date on industry trends and best practices so that the restaurant remains competitive.”

25. What processes do you use to monitor employee performance and attendance?

This question can help the interviewer understand how you use technology to support your team and monitor important business metrics. Use examples from your experience to explain how you keep track of employee attendance, manage schedules and communicate with staff members.

Example: “I believe that monitoring employee performance and attendance is essential for the success of any restaurant. To ensure that my team is performing to the best of their abilities, I use a variety of processes.

Firstly, I hold regular meetings with each member of staff to discuss their progress and identify areas where they can improve. During these meetings, I also review their attendance records and address any issues or concerns. This helps me stay on top of any potential problems before they become serious.

Secondly, I use an online system to track employee performance and attendance. This allows me to quickly access data such as hours worked, tasks completed, and customer feedback. By having this information at my fingertips, I am able to make informed decisions about how to best support my team.”


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