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What does a Night Club Manager do?

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  • Written By: Tiffany Manley
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 25 November 2016
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A night club manager handles the day-to-day operation of a night club. He or she might be in charge of staff management, bookkeeping and other office tasks, customer service and marketing. Many times, this person will work closely with the owner of the establishment to ensure that the club is working profitably and within local laws and regulations.

Staff management is one aspect of a manager’s job. This might include interviewing, hiring and training workers and creating staff schedules. A manager also might be responsible for handling minor disputes between staff members and conveying any concerns that workers might have to the owner.

Knowing basic bookkeeping and other office skills could be helpful for a night club manager. Generally, the ability to evaluate things using a cost-benefit analysis can be helpful. Inventory management, supply ordering and paperwork management are all skills that the manager is likely to use as well.

Having great customer service and people skills could help the manager of a night club. Patrons will visit the establishment daily, and it is the job of the manager to ensure they have a safe and enjoyable time. This might mean refilling drinks, waiting tables, cleaning up spills and handling any issues that could come up. The ability to be comfortable around professionals who work in areas such as accounting and licensing also might help the manager in doing his or her job successfully.

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Marketing can be a key part of a night club manager’s job. Knowing how to successfully draw new patrons to the establishment will help make the club more profitable. Various events and promotions might be held, and it generally is the job of the manager to make sure that these events are done in a professional and cost-effective manner.

It could be helpful for a manager to have knowledge of local and state government regulations. This might include liquor laws, food service laws, and fire safety regulations. Knowing who to contact with questions could greatly reduce the amount of time spent handling these matters.

Generally, all that is required to become a night club manager is a high school diploma or its equivalent. A manager may have some college coursework in business, management, or marketing. Schedules generally involve working late into the evening and on weekends, so many people do not choose to make this a permanent career. The training received could position them to take on positions in human resources, party planning, and restaurant management.

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anon308223
Post 8

I have to disagree with this last Post. I am a night club manager, very well established. I have worked for VDP Group for seven years as a bartender.

When I got promoted to management, I had to open a brand new night club from scratch, not knowing much but today I can say that this night club is the best in the country, only because of location, interacting with and keeping customers happy, whether it was their fault or not. You always keep your chin up by correcting the problem.

I do find having marketing done does help the company a lot, but it's when the customers walk in that matters the most. Is the venue suitable for them

? Is it their vibe? Well, if it's not, you make it their vibe by introducing yourself and making them feel like they can have an awesome night out.

I have no degree and I have no diploma, but the club I'm managing is still running and packed every night it's open. So just a thought to add to the last comment.

seag47
Post 7

In smaller nightclubs, managers can wear a lot of hats. I used to frequent one where the manager tended bar, ran the kitchen, and took food orders from customers.

Of course, he had someone else there to help him. She shared the load with him, but his job description was so much like hers.

The main difference was that he was the one accountable to the manager for the profit or lack thereof at the end of each month. Also, he handled the bank duties, so any issues with money were attributed to him.

lighth0se33
Post 6

It helps if a night club manager has a good working knowledge of marketing. Knowing how to promote your club wisely is key to succeeding.

I used to be a sales representative at a newspaper, and many of the local bars would call me to help them come up with an ad. Some were completely clueless about how to proceed, but others had the whole thing down, from theme to details.

One night club manager came up with a quirky new ad each week. He even designed them himself, according to our paper's size specifications. This guy was a manager, marketing expert, and graphic designer, all rolled into one!

His club was one of the most popular in the town. I can't help but assume that his ads had something to do with that.

shell4life
Post 5

@orangey03 – I agree with you. I knew a night club manager at a place with dozens of pool tables, and he would go out and play games with his customers.

He usually waited until they asked him to, because he didn't want to intrude. However, he was quite a good shot, and it was considered a challenge to beat him, so he got a lot of requests to play.

All his regulars knew him by name. Even while he was shooting pool, if someone came up to him with a question or needing something, he would pause right away and tend to them. He knew that business came first, and he simply found a way to incorporate pleasure into the mix, making him a popular manager.

orangey03
Post 4

I think that one of the most important thinks a night club manager can do is socialize with his patrons. My favorite clubs have been those in which the manager played a key role.

At one club, the manager would talk to every person who came through the door. He would tell them about specials, and he would make sure that they were having a good time. If they asked anything of him, within reason, he would do it.

This club was also one of the most successful in the area. I think that his charisma and involvement in the environment led to that.

JessicaLynn
Post 3

I think you really have to really enjoy a face paced environment to be a night club manager. Most night club managers don't really have any down time. As most people who have worked in club bars know, there's always some crisis to attend too.

If the bartender is late, the early manager might have to hop behind the bar and take over for awhile. Then someone walks out on their tab. You're out of the bottle you were promoting that evening. Two of the waitresses get into an argument over who gets what section. The list goes on.

SZapper
Post 2

@ceilingcat - I had a similar experience when I worked in night bars. Honestly though, I never begrudged anyone their ill-gotten management position. Because I would never, ever want that job!

Being a manager in a night club is one of the worst jobs ever, in my opinion. Not only do you have to make the customers happy, you have to deal with the staff. Night clubs attract a lot of younger people and people who don't really take the job seriously, so there is a lot of drama. Stuff goes on in night clubs that would never be considered appropriate in an office environment.

ceilingcat
Post 1

I have worked in plenty of night club venues, and it is true that most night club managers do not have college degrees. In fact, many of them don't even have the skills needed to be the manager of anything.

In my time working in clubs, I witnessed a lot of people become managers because they were "friends of the owner." I vividly remember once working under a manager that had absolutely no night club experience and had no idea what he was doing, but he was a friend of the owner, so he got the job.

Also, sometimes bartenders or bouncers will get "promoted" to management. This often doesn't work out, because bartenders usually make much more in tips than a managers salary, and there is nothing about the job of a bouncer that qualifies one to become a manager.

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