Category Archives: Books

Restaurant Recruitment; Autonomy (Medium Rare), Mastery (on the side), and Purpose (for dessert)

A strong (even everlasting) recruitment strategy is essential to any business’ growth and success. [TRUISM]

We are in the age of shorter attention spans, and the idea of “retention” resides in how quickly the google search can be performed in most cases. [FACT]

It is well-known that we struggle in the Restaurant Industry to keep great people. So many see it as a “stepping stone” or a stopover on a career with[out] direct service of others.

Call it the “nature of the industry” or poor retention in training, call it what you like, the “industry” has always had a problem.

I am proud to say that the trend is [seemingly] shifting. BUT the need to motivate great people to stay  in hospitality, long-term, has never been greater.

I’d like to present a point to Restauranteurs; a point that says we got it all wrong; a point that Dan Pink has brought to light with compelling information about the SCIENCE OF WHAT REALLY MOTIVATES US. You might be surprised.

Take 10 minutes to see what the science says about it;

Let’s consider for a moment that we may be treating how we motivate people a little “old school”. Let’s consider that flexible hours, “great tips” and a social environment are still not enough to outweigh the challenges of the “industry”.

Let’s look at this from the outside, and decide what REALLY keeps a person within your organization. What kept you this long?

Money is a motivator *FACT
Pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table. So they are only thinking about the work. *BEST Practice


Consider what is really important? 

Autonomy – The ability to be self-directed. You probably want to do something interesting, let me get out of your way.

Do you offer the freedom to be creative?

MasteryOur urge to get better at stuff and maybe MASTER it.

Do you FEED the want to MASTER great Hospitality?

Purpose – Having a “transcendent” purpose to attract and keep better talent. The Purpose Model.

What sets your purpose apart from the rest?

Perhaps, it is time to DO AWAY with the carrot and the stick and give people a REASON to stay.

To quote my favourite liberal restaurateur;

“It’s not hard to open a restaurant, it’s hard to open a restaurant that is BOTH; worth returning to & worth working for”

Get to doing!


The Icarus Deception and your meaningful art in a new economy.

The Icarus Deception from Squarespace on Vimeo.

the.icarus.deceptionSeth Godin is many things, author, blogger, marketer, speaker and provocateur. Sometimes with less than 15 words, Mr. Godin can cause a wave of thought and emotion with his engaging daily blog. His latest book The Icarus Deception is another artful thought stirring read.

Seth makes the bold claim that we are, for the most part, deceived. The book details the fundamental changes we need to make to create our own success in the new economy.

A little background on the title;

The main story told about Icarus is his attempt to escape from Crete by means of wings that his father constructed from feathers and wax. He ignored instructions not to fly too close to the sun, and the melting wax caused him to fall into the sea where he drowned. The myth shares thematic similarities with that of Phaëton—both are usually taken as tragic examples of hubris or failed ambition.

Daedalus fashioned two pairs of wings out of wax and feathers for himself and his son. Daedalus tried his wings first, but before taking off from the island, warned his son not to fly too close to the sun, nor too close to the sea, but to follow his path of flight. Overcome by the giddiness that flying lent him, Icarus soared through the sky curiously, but in the process he came too close to the sun, which melted the wax. Icarus kept flapping his wings but soon realized that he had no feathers left and that he was only flapping his bare arms, and so Icarus fell into the sea in the area which today bears his name, the Icarian Sea near Icaria, an island southwest of Samos{}

How do you interpret the deception?

Are you guilty of listening to Daedalus too often?

Thoughts from another provocateur;

  • After reading Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, I found this a great “next read” as it continued the learning from that book about Mastery.
  • Seth Godin draws the comparison that we are like ICARUS, in theory.
  • In the Industrial Economy of the past, we fly on the safe path and are sure not to go too high or too low.
  • We are mostly sheep following Daedalus’ instructions.
  • We are in a new Connection Economy, watching the next factory close down is the norm and MAKING ART, a lot of ART, is the new way to drive the economy.
  • “Art” is so much more than what you can put on a canvas, it is everything you SHARE with others.
  • ART must be shared, keeping it in your basement IS NOT ART.
  • Happiness with what you do, ALLEVIATES doubt and makes you a better person.
  • Creating ART that you are passionate about has never been easier, because of the INTERNET Connection.
  • Living inside your “comfort zone” and not experimenting, is a waste of your time.

Get out and make ART,  a lot of it, and don’t listen to the critics.


10,000 hours, judging a fish by it’s ability to climb a tree.

After reading Outlier’s by Malcolm Gladwell a second time, I have made some fundamental changes in my approach to my craft, a little explanation in hopes you will READ IT YOURSELF.

The 10,000 hour “theory” is rather simple, spend 10,000 hours of deliberate practice in any one field and become a “master” of your craft. Here is the math explained; 10000-hour-math

Simple, right?


On the surface it does seem like anyone with a “work hard” attitude and dedicated ethic could become a master of a few things in his life.

What are you a master of?

How many hours have you dedicated?

Are you a master of what you set out to be?

A few successful examples;10000-hour-action

So many things can be taken from Malcolm Gladwell’s “Outliers” here is a take;

  • Only one way to become a master, put in the time, deliberately
  • We are more a product of our environment than we think, try being a hockey player born in December
  • Genius exists, but more likely they just worked harder
  • Accidental mastery is a myth, “work harder” is real
  • “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”- Albert Einstein
  • We are too hard on ourselves, we give up too easily and we forget that becoming a master has no short cuts.

Here is a another hour towards my next 10,000 hour challenge.

Get to doing!

Infographic courtesy of Zintro