Restaurant Business launches the inaugural GM of the Year Award

This is the restaurant industry’s opportunity to celebrate the general managers who play a key role in operations.
GM of the Year
Restaurant Business will award three GMs of the Year this May.

Whether part of a large chain or a mom-and-pop, the linchpin of any restaurant is the general manager.

The GM plays a key role in what makes a restaurant succeed—or fail. And the importance of that position has been made ever clearer over the past three years as restaurants across the industry recover from the pandemic, battle historically high costs and compete to recruit and retain the best talent.

Across the industry, restaurant companies are launching programs to attract stellar GMs or develop them from within, offering bonuses for top-performing talent that range from financial rewards and trips to Hawaii to equity in the company.

To help restaurant operators put the spotlight on this key position, Restaurant Business this year will debut a new industrywide award program: GM of the Year.

We invite restaurant companies to nominate their best general managers. RB editors and a select team of operators will pick winners in three categories: limited service, full service and independent restaurants.

“The industry has long offered awards to chefs and restaurant leaders. This award is designed to celebrate the GMs who often work behind the scenes to ensure restaurant operations run like clockwork. These are team leaders who set the tone and can be the first to recognize and cultivate internal talent,” said Jonathan Maze, Restaurant Business editor-in-chief. “They are problem solvers, goal achievers and they deserve to be recognized for all that they do.”

Here are the criteria details. 

Here is the award entry form. 

The GM nominees will be judged by certain criteria, such as hitting or exceeding the restaurant’s financial metrics, impacting turnover, leadership skills through crisis and shaping workplace culture.

Each of the three winners will receive a $2,500 cash prize, along with airfare and hotel accommodations in Chicago for the National Restaurant Association Show in May, where they will be honored at an award celebration. Winners will also be featured in Restaurant Business Online coverage.

There is a cost of $95 per entry. The deadline for applications is March 31. 

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