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Running a Restaurant/Co-ownership and yearly profit


Dear Chase,

I am very close to starting my own italian-american restaurant.
Is it a good idea to make it italian american for fear of being criticized for entrees such as potatoes, burgers, and other american dishes.

I will have a co-ownership and split the yearly income with my business partner. What is the average salary for my business partner and I as co-owners. How much % of profit should be calculated for employment and other expenses?

         thank you,

Hello Conner, Thank you for the question.  Congratulations! Starting a business is a very exciting time – I wish you nothing but the best. In fact, some of my fondest early memories are from an Italian/American eatery (owned/operated/menu) just a half a block from where I grew up. I still remember their pizza and sausage “grinders.”

I’m not sure what you mean by “fear of being criticized” – You are the creator of the concept and the owner – if you wish to serve only sardine and peanut butter sandwiches - it is your complete and given right. Now, if you asking me “should I have burgers, etc.” - I can only say that many of my friends in operations/ownership are extremely fearful of the “veto-vote” i.e. - the one person in the group (family, friends, extended party) who might not find anything on your menu to their liking - thus leading to the expansive menus that exist today. This is a question you must answer for yourself – 1) To specialize and create a clarion call from the uniqueness of your preparation, products or presentation, including service 2) To attempt to become universally acceptable and avoid the veto-vote.

As far as splitting the “income” - I’m quite sure you mean to say “net/profits/bottom line” - as the requirements of maintaining the business will certainly demand its fair share from the “top line” or income. My advice is always to get as much as you can and still be fair – based upon the risk factors of putting up the money and the sweat of doing the hands-on work. Please click over to and grab a copy of -  it will help you prepare for what's to come.

Running a Restaurant

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Chase LeBlanc


I am the author of the new book, HIGH IMPACT HOSPITALITY: Upgrade Your Purpose, Performance and Profits! I am also the founder and CEO of Leadagers LLC (leaders who manage, managers who lead, "leed/i/jers") a hospitality industry consultancy. Our primary focus is in upgrading the purpose, performance and profits of restaurants, bars, food & beverage outlets and/or nightclubs. We have expertise in operations, start-ups, training, in-house leadership development and positive customer service experiences. 720.269.9537


My 30+ year hospitality career started as owner/operator of a nightclub development and management company. After successfully selling that business, I led within a variety of national and global operations as General Manager and multi-unit Regional Manager and I have also served corporations as Vice President and President. My extremely broad range of experiences includes leading training stores, entertainment complexes, fine dining establishments, high-volume theme restaurants, quick-service restaurants, dance/night clubs, comedy clubs, college taverns, dueling piano bars, pizzerias, high-volume sport’s bars, live music showrooms, retail stores and gift shops, fast-food concessions, catering/banquet facilities and high-volume arcades.

"Staffing Doctor" columnist for Hotel F&B Magazine Top 10 - Core Hospitality - Quick Serve Leader - Wise Words - Inside F&B And have been a featured blogger for In addition to my new book High Impact Hospitality, I have been a contributing writer for and/or my properties have been featured in Cheers, F&B, Food Service News, Hot Spots America, Military Club & Hospitality, Nation’s Restaurant News, Night Club & Bar and Top Shelf.

Attended the University of Colorado for three years and left to open my first nightclub at the age of 21.

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