Goldman Sachs offers a solution to waiting in line during lunch

Customers receive a discount when dining after 1:30.

Oct. 21—Goldman Sachs has a pretty brilliant approach to making sure its highly-paid workers don't' waste a chunk of their workday standing around waiting in line for lunch. As John Carney at CNBC reports, the investment bank charges full price for sandwiches and salads at its cafeteria from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. But if you're willing to eat an early or late lunch outside that window, you get a 25 percent discount.

The only thing that doesn't make sense in this strategy, as Business Insider's Josh Barro notes, is that they have created an unfortunate "cliff" effect. The result is that people start standing around at 1:20 in the afternoon -- waiting for the discount to kick in. Also inefficient! Instead, lunch should be put on a sliding scale so that there are no cliff effects. Then make it dynamic, so that the size and timing of the discount adjusts depending on how crowded the cafeteria is on that day. I'm sure there are some people on the Goldman payroll right now who can work out the algorithm in their spare time, just for kicks.*

But while the Goldmanites work on that, here's an idea: Restaurants everywhere should learn a thing or two from the Goldman Sachs cafeteria. Restaurateurs tend to see success when their place is so full that nobody else can get in the door. In fact, that's a massive market failure.

More From FoodService Director

Managing Your Business
teamwork pack

As summer begins to fade and vacation season comes to a close, it’s time to start thinking about revitalizing staffers’ connections to one another . It’s certainly no secret in the Winsight offices that I’m a bit of a social butterfly, which, in turn, means I’m a rockstar at team building. Can you spot the inter-office activity I haven’t organized from the list below?

• Breakfast Sandwich Fridays: Co-workers rotate responsibility of providing ingredients for customizable sandwiches. Mimosas may have been involved. • “Sound of Music” Soundtrack Singalong Thursdays. The majority of...

Industry News & Opinion
k-12

The School Nutrition Foundation —the School Nutrition Association’s philanthropic sibling—and Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign have partnered to launch an initiative called Schools as Nutrition Hubs.

“No Kid Hungry really sees schools as a critical place in the fight against childhood hunger,” says Laura Hatch, director of national partnerships for No Kid Hungry. “Schools are really a no-brainer because they have the infrastructure, they have the experience, it’s a trusted place for families. And being able to maximize their programs and maximize the federal...

Ideas and Innovation
walk-in cooler

The walk-in cooler can serve as a gathering place for more than just produce. When temperatures rise, staff at Empire State South restaurant in Atlanta host meetings in the walk-in and make occasional trips to hang out throughout the day to beat the back-of-house heat.

Menu Development
college students eating

Taste may reign supreme when college students choose their next snack, but operators should also pay attention to factors such as price and portion size. Here are the most important attributes students consider when choosing snacks, according to Technomic’s 2017 College and University Consumer Trend Report .

Taste: 78%

Ability to satisfy my appetite between meals: 67%

Price: 64%

Portion size: 54%

Familiarity: 46%

Overall nutrition value: 40%

Protein content: 36%

All-natural ingredients: 29%

Fiber content: 27%

...

FSD Resources