Beginning October 2019,
Muddy’s East Memphis will be open Tues-Sat 10am-9pm
Muddy’s Midtown will be open Tues-Sat 7am-9pm
we will be closed Sundays & Mondays
(phone line open for preorders Mondays 9am-3pm)
The main change is Mondays... From 2008-2014 we were open Tuesdays-Saturdays with Monday being a “prep shift” in the kitchen; we began being open on Mondays in 2014. I’m proud that we challenged ourselves in an effort to be more competitive and better serve our customers, but after looking back at 5 years of commitment to the endeavor and a lot of discernment, I feel strongly that the cost has outweighed the benefit.
Muddy’s is a people-centered business and while on the surface it seems that more open time is better service, I truly believe that closing Mondays is the kind of organizational “self care” that will enable us to better serve our customers and better create delicious food.
We believe being closed Mondays is …
Better for staff because
- Gnomies will frequently get 2 consecutive days off, allowing for true recharge & refresh
- More stability in scheduling is family-friendly for gnomies with dependents
- A true prep shift for the Kitchen creates a more ordered & smooth work week for bakers
- Most of our team's full timers working the same days of each week increases effective communication
Better for customers because
- Prep day allows us to have lead time for menu items that include time as a key ingredient, ie: royal iced cookies
- More timely delivery of morning baked goods on our first day of the week means more consistency & reliability for our morning guests
- A more productive, orderly kitchen will yield fewer mistakes
- Lower gnomie turnover means better experiences & intimacy for our guests
At Muddy’s we use a tool called “visioning” to help us articulate what success looks & feels like on a given project and we LOVE the vision we wrote for this change. Since our guests are a vital and energetic part of our community, we want to share our vision with you!
(a “vision” = a story about what success looks and feels like at a specific point in time in the future, told with enough detail that we’ll recognize it when we arrive!)
Our Vision for Mondays
It’s April of 2020 and we’ve been closed on Mondays for 6 months… it’s going so great!
On Mondays the kitchen hosts a small but active team of our most efficient bakers who prep for the coming week- they measure ingredients, make buttercreams, simmer fruits, and prepare other staples to help us open the shops on Tuesday fully stocked. A couple retail gnomies are there too assisting customers with preorders over the phone & email; they love being “back of house” on our highest volume day for taking preorders as it allows them to focus on these special guests without distraction and with ready access to the baking team. Gnomies who work these shifts end up learning so much about our product- which they in turn share with our guests!
While a few gnomies work Monday-Friday, most gnomies work Tuesday-Saturday and those days feel amazing too! We arrive on Tuesdays feeling refreshed and ready for the week after enjoying two days in a row off. In the shops and in the kitchen the energy is great! The Monday prep shift is like a “mise en place” for the whole business; each day is well paced, productive, and smooth thanks to our taking the time to “set it up” on Mondays. The kitchen is humming with focused productivity and the shops are joyful “happy places” for our customers.
Even our customers love coming in on Tuesdays after a two day break—while many say they crave us on Mondays and wish we were open, it’s clear that absence actually makes the heart grow fonder… it's created a fun “thank goodness it’s Tuesday” vibe! Our regulars appreciate how thorough we were communicating the change and we have showered them with gratitude for their support. Best of all, our guests feel the positive impact of schedule stability in the quality of service they receive and feeling truly known by the folks serving them.
More overlap on teams means better communication among gnomies but also between locations. Gnomies love the stability of scheduling and are proud that we make providing a family friendly work environment within the food service industry a priority; it’s also helping us attract and keep a diverse and skilled team of gnomies. We’re even seeing positive results on our P&L—even though we’re technically selling a little less, we’re making up for it in less waste, fewer mistakes, and better stewardship of labor.
Overall, getting back to our roots in this way has been a healthy decision--- “self care” for our organization that is clearly helping us better care for our customers & community!
If you have questions or comments about this change (or would like to learn how to use visioning in your own organization!), my door is always open and I’d love to hear from you!