7 Things WE can learn from the Original Pancake House:

  • Quality Counts.  OPH (what I’ve always called it) serves up only the best.  The best ingredients, the best dairy products, fresh squeezed O.J., and bacon as thick as a ream of paper!  We all talk about how great the omelets are, how gooey the 49’ers are, and we keep coming back.  Don’t be fooled.  If it wasn’t good, people wouldn’t be lined up.
  • Prices don’t scare people when you DELIVER.  No offense OPH, I like your style.  You keep raising prices and we pay enormous amounts of cash for flour, eggs, and bacon.  But you know what?  We keep coming back.  We know what you deliver, we know we can count on it, and out slides the VISA.
  • The Same, But different.  I have been to 10 OPH restaurants in my life.  They are all good – no, great.  Each one has it’s own unique flair, but they all deliver the same great breakfast.  I like that.  You like that.  You can count on a plate of pancakes, the scoop of butter, and the warmed maple syrup.
  • Presentation doesn’t hurt.  A big white plate . . . and a huge fluffy yellow omelet in a perfect oblong shape.  Four perfectly straight crisp pieces of bacon laid-out on a white side plate.  How about oatmeal, generously mounded up in a white bowl, with 5 sides of lots of goodies to go with it.  You just don’t get this anywhere else.  At other restaurants the best you get is in a picture on the menu, and at OPH, the best is delivered to your table!  One more thing:  Apple Pancake?  Dutch Baby?  Need I say more?
  • Gift of Value – people think of you later.  I cannot tell you how many OPH pens I find around my glove box, work bench, desk, and kitchen junk drawer.  Everytime I see them I think, “Hey! I am craving a little OPH right now.”  People love gifts of value.  At OPH it’s a pen, some places it’s a magnet, and others a scratch pad.  I do believe they work!
  • Success Follows FOCUS.  You can’t get dinner at OPH.  Most of them close in the late afternoon.  They serve ONE THING.  It’s breakfast from 7 AM to 2 PM.  (Or something like this.)  There is great power in FOCUS.  Some restaurants have all three meals all day – and the menu is 14 pages long.  OPH is simple, successful, and succinct.
  • Great People and Attitudes Bring people Back!  OPH pays well, hires well, and trains well.  This pays off.  At all the OPH restaurants that I have been around the employees STAY.  Why?  They are taken care of.  I can tell, can you?  These people are happy:  they greet, they serve, and they engage with customers.  This helps everyone from the customer, the owner, and the employees to actually enjoy being there.  I know for a fact that no one wants the first cup of coffee of the day to come from a grumpy person.


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