Restaurant Math – Thin Odds

You spend your life waiting for a moment that just don’t come/Well, don’t waste your time waiting – Bruce Springsteen, Badlands

You know the feeling you get when you walk up to a roulette wheel in a casino, place a $100 on 00, it comes up, you win $3,500, and then you let it ride on 00, hit it again, and walk out with $122,500? No? Me either.

The reason I don’t is that while it’s possible to come up with that combination, the chance of that happening on a 38-pocket wheel is 1/38 * 1/38 = 1/1,444 = 0.00069, about 7 times in 10,000 tries.

But that is more than twice as likely as the probability of a restaurant result I recently witnessed.

As we left a brewery, it had four open tables; each sat eight, B. Four parties waited, C, held in place by their policy not to seat parties of four or fewer in tables for eight. But, the chance of filling them up according to their plan and the data, A, is 0.13^4 = 0.00028, less than half that of our roulette gambit.

Meanwhile, those people stayed hungry. They and the restaurant both suffered.

We are, all of us, always playing games of chance. It pays to know the odds. Anybody up for blackjack?

#business #success #management #probability #sales #restaurant