精益餐饮|西贝“功夫鱼”背后的故事

周健
jeff zhou

many restaurants find their source of competitive advantage to be the good service they provide or the low prices they offer. chinese restaurant chain xibei, however, has always focused on making its food haochi – delicious.许多餐厅把提供优质服务或低价作为自己的竞争优势,然而,西贝连锁餐厅则一直专注于把菜做得更好吃。

to fulfill this promise, xibei strives to select the highest-quality produce and ingredients. the company has also set up a chefs school to develop talent, worked to strengthen product development and improvement work at the hq, and introduced a red refrigerator system to easily expose quality problems. (the lean transformation of xibei was discussed in a planet lean case study.)

为兑现这一承诺,西贝努力选择最优质的主材和配料。该公司还成立了一所厨师学校来培养人才,致力于加强总部的产品开发和改进工作,并引进了一个红色冰箱系统来容易地暴露质量问题。

all these measures are great, but none can be effective without the support and active participation of the chefs themselves. xibei’s management knows this, and that’s why, throughout the company’s lean journey, chefs have been deeply involved in the improvement work.

所有这些措施都很好,但是如果没有厨师们的支持和积极参与,就不会有什么效果。西贝的管理层深知这一点,因此在公司的精益行动中,厨师们都积极参与到改进工作中。

dishing out problems

凸显问题

chef liang fei is a master when it comes to cooking kongfu fish, one of the most popular items on the xibei menu. he is one of six star chefs working in product development and standardization at the xibei headquarters.

功夫鱼是西贝菜单上最受欢迎的菜肴之一,而主厨梁飞是烹饪功夫鱼的大师。他是西贝总部从事产品开发和标准化工作的几位六星级厨师之一。

while talking with a few xibei people about his kongfu fish, however, chef liang learned that not everybody had a positive opinion on the dish. first of all, the chefs who had to prepare the dish in the various xibei branches didn’t seem happy: because the lead-time for making kongfu fish is so long, they had to wake up and come to the restaurants very early in the morning. they would often show up at 6am and stick around for over 12 hours, which of course made them very tired. the store managers also complained that this position had become so tiresome that it was now very hard to find people to fill it (young people seemed especially averse to doing it).

然而,在与几位西贝人谈论他的功夫鱼时,梁师傅发现并不是每个人都对这道菜给予很高的评价。首先,在西贝各分店准备这道菜的厨师们似乎并不开心:因为制作功夫鱼的时间很长,所以他们不得不一大早就爬起来赶往餐馆。他们经常在早上6点上班,在店里逗留时间超过12个小时,这当然让他们很疲惫。饭店的经理们也抱怨说,这个职位工作太累,以至于现在很难找到人来填补空缺(年轻人似乎特别不愿意干这个活)。

secondly, quality management is difficult with kongfu fish: the most critical steps in the process – including the stewing – take place before the regular shift begins, with the chef usually being the only person in the restaurant. this means that determining the quality of the dish solely depended on his ability to self-criticize. at one point, a xibei executive told chef liang: “when was the fish put on the stove? god knows. has it been stewing for four hours – which is the standard? god knows. have the ingredients been added as required? god knows.” those three “god knows” were somehow enough to frighten chef liang.

其次,功夫鱼的质量管理很困难:这个过程中最关键的步骤—包括炖菜—在正常上班开始之前进行,那时候厨师通常是餐厅里唯一的人。这意味着这道菜的质量完全取决于他的自我批评能力。有一次,一位西贝管理人员告诉梁师傅:“鱼是什么时候放到炉子上的?天晓得。是不是已经按照标准连续炖了四个小时了-?天晓得。是否按要求添加了配料?天晓得”。这三个“天晓得”让梁师傅吓了一跳。

thirdly, managing sales of the dish was difficult. because the lead-time is so long and, of course, all the cooking work must be completed before lunch or dinner, the restaurants found it very hard to forecast how much kongfu fish they should prepare. as a result, the dish would often sell out too early or too much of it would be prepared. at that point, if too much was left, the restaurants had to take measures to promote the dish. when promotion was not enough, store managers had to make the dish the workers’ dinner (a measure that lowers the restaurant’s gross margin). many restaurant managers and chefs then started the ask the same question: “can the process of making kongfu fish be changed so that the dish can be sold the next day?”

第三,这道菜的销售管理很困难。由于准备时间太长,而所有的烹饪工作都必须在午餐或晚餐前完成,因此餐馆发现他们很难预测自己应该准备多少份功夫鱼。因此,这道菜要么过早地卖完了,要么准备得太多卖不完。那时,如果还剩太多鱼的话,餐馆必须采取措施来推销这道菜。当促销活动还不够时,商店的经理们不得不把这道菜做成员工餐(这一措施会降低餐厅的毛利)。于是,许多餐馆经理和厨师开始问同样的问题:“制作功夫鱼的工艺可以改变吗,以便第二天也能继续卖?”

despite the popularity of the dish, there were also some customer complaints – for example, the strong smell of the dish or the sometimes-earthy flavor. these comments made chef liang anxious. in response, he went to complain with the purchasing people, who in turn tried everything they could to avoid meeting with him.

尽管这道菜很受欢迎,但还是会有一些顾客抱怨—比如,这道菜的口味太重,或者鱼有一些土腥味。这些评论让梁师傅很焦虑。作为回应,他去找那些采购的人抱怨,后来搞得采购的人想方设法避开他。

over time, however, by studying lean thinking and coaching leadership, chef liang developed a better understanding of his work. he recognized that, as the chef responsible for the kongfu fish dish at xibei, he was also the one who had to own problems. he realized he had to explore their root-causes and come up with feasible countermeasures. he also vowed to move some of the work upstream to simplify processes in the restaurants, while ensuring the chefs could show up at 9am and leave at 1pm.

然而,随着时间的推移,通过学习精益思想和教练领导力,梁师傅对自己的工作有了更好的理解。他意识到,作为在西贝负责功夫鱼的主厨,他自己也有问题。他意识到他必须寻找问题的根源,并提出可行的对策。他还发誓要将部分工作移到供应链上游(中央厨房),以简化再餐厅里的制作流程,同时确保厨师们在上午9点到店,下午1点离开。

solving problems effectively

有效地解决问题

but how to do it?

solving the problem of long working hours had to start with the method and technology used to stew the fish. if the process lead-time could be shortened, chef liang thought, the working hours of the chefs could also decrease. at the same time, a more efficient stewing process would allow the chefs to take on more work, which in turn would lead to more profit for the restaurants.

但是怎么做呢?

要解决工作时间长的问题,首先要从用炖鱼的方法和技术入手。梁师傅想,如果加工时间可以缩短,厨师的工作时间就可以减少。与此同时,一个更高效的炖菜过程可以让厨师们腾出时间做更多的工作,从而为餐馆带来更多的利润。

being extremely familiar with the stewing process, chef liang and his team decided to explore the possibility of developing a more efficient piece of equipment to stew the fish: a new induction pressure cooker was eventually developed and introduced in some resturants as an experiment. with the new machine, the stewing process was shortened from four hours to one hour and 20 minutes. chef liang was pleased to find that the fish tasted better, too.

梁师傅和他的团队非常熟悉炖菜这一过程,他们决定尝试开发一种更高效的设备来炖鱼。一种新型的感应压力锅最终被开发出来,并在一些餐厅里做了实验。用了新机器以后,这一过程从4小时缩短到1小时20分钟。让梁师傅高兴的是,这条鱼的味道更好了。

the new equipment can cook 70 fishes a day (as well as other dishes), which resulted in a reduction in the number of machines that each restaurant needs. with more of the process now automated, the chefs’ time was freed up. furthermore, the energy efficiency of the new stewing process is five times higher than the old technology allowed.

这种新设备可以每天烹制70条鱼(以及其他菜肴),从而减少了每家餐厅所需的机器数量。随着更多的过程自动化,厨师们有了更多的空余时间。此外,新工艺的能源效率是旧工艺的5倍。

this successful experiment saved space, time, and money. it was a welcome change for the restaurants and the chefs.

这个成功的实验节省了空间、时间和金钱。对于餐馆和厨师来说,这是一个可喜的变化。

in 2016, chef liang and his team made many more important improvements on the cooking process and the ingredients used to make kongfu fish. first, they introduced an ingredients package (following a traditional frying method) and removed ingredients like fermented bean curd and chicken sauce. now, the central kitchen completes all the preparation work and delivers the ready-to-cook package to the different restaurants, which hasn’t only saved one hour every day for the chefs, but also made it possible for the central kitchen to make and deliver fresh dishes every day. this, in turn, results in a more haochi taste. chefs in the restaurants only need to open the package and put it into the cooker. the new process is very simple and doesn’t even call for the use of knives or the addition of flavors like salt and soybean. the training of the chefs has, thefore, become more straightforward, and the taste of kongfu fish consistent across all xibei restaurants. all this has contributed to making kongfu fish a more popular dish.

2016年,梁师傅和他的团队在烹饪过程和制作功夫鱼的原料上做了很多重要的改进。首先,他们推出了一个配料包(遵循传统的油炸方法),并去掉了豆腐乳和鸡汁等原料。现在,中央厨房可以完成所有的准备工作,并将准备就绪的包装送到不同的餐厅,这不仅为厨师每天节省了一小时的时间,而且还使中央厨房每天都能制作和提供新鲜的菜肴。这反过来又会导致菜的口感更好。餐厅的厨师只需要打开包装,然后放进锅里。这个新工艺非常简单,甚至不需要使用刀具,也不需要添加盐和大豆之类的调味料。大厨们的训练变得更加简单,功夫鱼的味道在所有西贝餐厅都能保持一致。所有这些使得功夫鱼成为一种更受欢迎的菜肴。

open your heart and be joyful

敞开你的心扉,让自己快乐

like kongfu fish, there are many dishes that xibei’s chefs are working hard to continuously improve (different teams are responsible for different categories of food).

和功夫鱼一样,西贝的其他厨师们也在努力不断改进(不同的团队负责不同种类的食物)。

besides all the inspiring improvement stories, we have learned that what really matters is that chefs and teams “open their hearts” to communicate more effectively with their staff, and that they find joy in their work. this is closely connected with xibei’s leadership training program to develop coaching skills.

除了所有振奋人心的改进故事,我们还了解到,真正重要的是厨师和团队“敞开心扉”,与员工进行更有效的沟通,并在工作中找到乐趣。这与西贝的培养教练技能的领导力培训项目是密不可分的。

xibei management came to this realization after noticing how difficult communication was between chef liang and other leading chefs and local chefs, during “go see” trips in branches across china. how could they hope to facilitate improvement if they couldn’t even communicate effectively?

在注意到梁大厨和其他主厨、当地厨师之间的沟通有多么困难的时候,西贝管理团队意识到了这一点。如果他们连有效的沟通都做不到,怎么能期望他们促进改善呢?

the core problem was that regional chefs often worried about leading chefs visiting from xibei’s hq and making changes in their gemba. the chefs were also reluctant to expose problems, fearing they would be deemed responsible for them – a direct result of the company’s previous approach to management, which saw leading chefs visiting from central offices criticize local chefs for their mistakes, rather than help them find solutions to their problems.

核心问题是,分店厨师经常担心来自西贝总部的大厨们光顾他们的现场。厨师们也不愿意暴露问题,因为担心会让他们承担责任—这是该公司以前的管理方法的直接结果,他们发现,来自总部的首席厨师经常批评分店厨师的错误,而不是帮助他们找到解决问题的方法。

the new approach, based on lean coaching, that xibei introduced has taught leaders across the organization that it is their role and responsibility to help people find root-causes and solve problems, not to point their finger at them at the first obstacle. this is the only way to effectively improve everybody’s work.

西贝引入的方法基于精益指导理念,新方法教导整个组织的领导者,帮助人们找到根源和解决问题的方法是领导者的职责,而不是在发现问题后马上指责他们。这是有效改善每个人工作的唯一方法。

an immediate consequence of the introduction of the new coaching model was a more positive interaction and more effective communication between coaches and coachees. the focus for xibei leaders is now on having “heart-to-heart” conversations and closer relationships with people, which leads to work improvements that last. another important consequence of the introduction of lean coaching is that chefs and leaders have now learned to take a step back and let the people work on improvements and on solving problems.

引入新教练模式的一个直接结果是,教练和学员之间的交流更加积极,更有效。现在,西贝领导人的重点是“谈心”,与员工保持更密切的关系,从而使工作得到改善。引入精益指导的另一个重要的结果是,厨师和领导者现在已经学会了退一步,让员工去改进和解决问题。

chef liang and his colleagues now reflect on problems and strive to understand their people’s situation, communicate with them more patiently, and encourage them to tackle problems (on the job and at home) more positively and with determination. this has taken fear out of the workplace, and instilled joy in it instead. [this concept first appeared at menlo innovations under ceo richard sheridan, though it applies to every sector.]

梁师傅和他的同事们现在反思问题,努力了解他们员工的处境,更耐心地与他们沟通,鼓励他们更积极、更坚定地解决问题(在工作和家庭中)。这让人们消除了对工作场所的恐惧,并带来了快乐。这个概念最早出现在首席执行官richard sheridan领导下的menlo创新公司,尽管它适用于每个行业。

an added benefit of coaching is that it turns the leading chefs into better learner and enables them to take on bigger challenges and pursue higher goals.

教练的另一个好处是,它能让顶尖的厨师变得更有能力,让他们接受更大的挑战,追求更高的目标。

only joyful chefs cook delicious food

只有快乐的厨师才能做出可口的美味

every problem that is exposed at xibei is now an opportunity to improve. management is determined to ensure that any future improvement work starts with the needs of the restaurants.

在西贝,每一个暴露出来的问题现在都是一个改进的机会。管理人员决心确保今后的任何改进工作都以餐馆的需求为起点。

furthermore, all the good ideas generated by people at the front line have a way of being analyzed and implemented, whereas in the past this was often not possible. as leaders become more willing to listen, people become more willing to talk. at a recent food development and improvement workshop, people in local branches of xibei shared 10 improvement ideas on kongfu fish – most of which have proved to be effective. it is now the regional chefs who lead the experiments time and time again, not the chefs at the hq. the improvement work has become a team’s effort, and because it’s the people involved in the process who suggest standards, these tend to be followed more than before. co-creation translates into adherence to standards.

此外,一线员工所产生的所有好的想法都有被分析和实施的可能,而在过去,这是不可能的事情。当领导变得更愿意倾听时,员工会变得更愿意交谈。在最近的一次食品开发和改进研讨会上,西贝分部的员工分享了10条关于功夫鱼的改进意见,其中大部分都被证明是有效的。现在是分部厨师们一次又一次地领导试验,而不是总部的厨师们。改进工作已经成为一个团队的努力,而且因为标准是由参与过程的人提出来的,所有人们更愿意去遵守这些标准。共同创造转化为对标准的遵守。

xibei’s slogan is “because of xibei, life is joyful”. following all the lean work they’ve done, chef liang and his colleagues have realized there is a strong correlation between joy on the workplace and delicious food.

西贝的口号是“因为西贝,人生喜悦”。在经历了这些精益变革之后,梁大厨和他的同事们意识到,工作场所的快乐和可口的美食之间有着很强的关联。

 

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