Celler de Can Roca has consolidated itself as a successful business model. But how did they do it? And most importantly, how have they been able to stay at the top? One of its great secrets: its staff.
In Celler de Can Roca, waiters play a role that goes beyond a mere serving function.
Josep Roca, sommelier at Celler de Can Roca and one of the architects of this culinary marvel, says that as a waiter you tend to master empathy, cordiality, psychomotor movements, and customer service.
Efficiency is one of its identity factors.
215 days opening at 10 am and closing at 2 am. 55 services per shift in the nine weekly services.
Celler de Can Roca serves more than 23,000 customers a year with a staff of 85 people distributed among 50 cooks, 17 waiters, 6 sommeliers, 3 receptionists, 4 cleaners, 3 administrators, 1 press officer and 3 innovation managers.
Each service requires a whopping 1,000 plates, 1,650 pieces of cutlery, almost 1,000 glasses and more than 330 special holders. They have spent more than 12,000 hours a year on research and invested almost one million euros in technology over the last decade, as digital transformation has been key to optimising processes.
58 new dishes land on its menu every year, ready to become the winning horse of what today is the culinary emblem of our country: Celler de Can Roca. Keeping these numbers is complex, but not impossible with a highly organised work plan, which includes exceptional personnel and task planning.
The most important resource of any company is its workforce. The staff is the most valuable asset of any business, regardless of the sector in which it operates.
They are responsible for defining, assimilating and transmitting the true idiosyncrasy of a business, which is why it is vitally important that their integration into the company’s “family” is entirely done so that their technical, business and emotional skills are developed to the fullest.
So, and just so, is it possible to create value.
Celler de Can Roca is very clear about this and focuses on three aspects: collaboration, motivation and training.
The triumvirate of Joan, Josep and Jordi Roca is based on several internal rules.
On one hand, the restaurant closes at midday on Tuesdays to provide its staff with the necessary training.
And on the other hand, for some years now, the kitchen teams have been distributed into two brigades that work in two shifts. The midday and evening services are planned and organised directly by the staff.
This way, the teams take turns to go through the different established schedules.
The decision to double the staff’s volume was taken in order to avoid the loss of potential, the drain of talented employees and to support workers by providing options for a work-life balance.
Celler de Can Roca, led by the Roca brothers, prioritises staff management because they are the company’s source of creativity and innovation, by supporting the staff with processes, systematics and discipline.
For the Roca brothers, it is essential that employees feel part of the company’s DNA and that they feel it as their own in order to increase and strengthen their motivation.
An optimal leadership of these teams is the key to managing the staff of one of the world’s best restaurants.
And that leadership must be approached from the people’s knowledge and their work functions, ensuring that the team remains cohesive and motivated. A performance in which everyone forms part of the team.
The success of Celler de Can Roca‘s management model is not an accident, it started out of an effective strategic approach and good practices in terms of managing people involved in a collaborative, motivating and training project.
In Celler de Can Roca, “when you sing a comanda, the whole kitchen responds, it’s like a concert”. This is how Nacho Baucells, one of the chefs at Celler de Can Roca, defines it.
The kitchen tunes its instruments so that its waiters perform a perfectly executed dance in which diners become direct spectators of the greatness of Celler de Can Roca in business management.
In each area of the kitchen, a dish from the menu is made and prepared, so that the organisation of the production and completion of the menus is practically Germanic.
Waiters, cooks, head chefs… all dance to the same rhythm in a smooth, rhythmic way. No shouting, no stress, perfect coordination. The delight of gastronomy in successful business management.
Celler de Can Roca, with the three brothers at the helm, is an international benchmark in culinary innovation that bases its successful personnel management model on leadership for innovation, the culture of experimentation, the focus on the user experience, collaborative teamwork and the employee experience.
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Josep Roca points out several ways in which a business works like a well-oiled machine and which is applicable to all staff functions:
The constant effort to improve, the way customers are taken care of, the staff members fellowship, the customer service, and the team as a fundamental pillar and the proximity product served by its suppliers.
This is just one part of a perfect system in which intangible factors such as sensitivity, warmth, harmony and intelligence play a part.
Post-materialism and sensory anthropology at the service of the waiter.