June 2008 Blog Posts (91)

Restaurants In My Blood

Having recently come back into the restaurant industry, it only took me a short time to realize just how much it was in my blood. As the CMO of Fishbowl (fishbowl.com), I joined the company a little over 6 months ago after a long 8 year stint at AOL, and found it didn't take long to re-establish my connections with the industry given a quick re-look at my past experiences and what I had learned:



Me as a Waiter -- who hasn't spent some time in their life staying, "My name is Michael,… Continue

Added by Michael Murray on June 17, 2008 at 9:21am — 2 Comments

Preparing for opening week

The DineSXM team recently visited one of its participating restaurants on the Saturday of its initial opening week. We forgot to make reservations (shame on us) but were lucky enough to be seated. During our visit, we watched the maître d’ turn away as many as a dozen parties of walk-in guests.



The two hosts were visibly overwhelmed. While welcoming guests, they also had to oversee the restaurant's operation and staff. Time after time we'd see people walk in, only to find an unmanned… Continue

Added by Norbert Marrale on June 16, 2008 at 8:49pm — 3 Comments

Welcome Erin Shea, Director Community Development

I am pleased to announce that Erin Shea has joined the FohBoh team. Erin will be responsible for day-to-day community management, editorial direction, strategic planning and member advocacy. She is a talented professional writer, editor and has been blogging since the late nineties, way back when they were called web logs. An online community veteran, Erin has been participating in forums since the late eighties when she would sneak down to… Continue

Added by diane on June 16, 2008 at 12:51pm — 2 Comments

I Dreamed I Saw Robert Mondavi

Many of us know Robert Mondavi was a visionary; a man of action as much as words. But he was also a contrarian. About thirty years ago he began to do more traveling around the country, telling everyone who would listen that the industry must produce wines that “blend seamlessly with food.” He would talk effusively about the wonderful things he and Magrit discovered during their visits to Europe, the physical and spiritual home of wine.



But somewhere along the line Mondavi’s message… Continue

Added by Randy Caparoso on June 16, 2008 at 8:39am — No Comments

HOW TO SCREW UP A TRADE SHOW

Recently I visited a large mining and oil & gas trade show. This was probably one of the biggest showings of mining, oil and gas, new energy, commodities and fuel sources. It’s the kind of show where you, as a potential investor, get to walk around and talk to and meet up to 400+ different companies, wanting you to buy their stocks.



I'm going to use this non-hospitality-oriented trade show as a good example of what NOT to do when exhibiting at one...especially if you're a… Continue

Added by Roy MacNaughton on June 15, 2008 at 11:45pm — 4 Comments

Happy Fathers Day



I was just reviewing some recent photos taken and being stored in my files when I came across this one. That's my 84 year old father and my wife, Kim standing near his home in Irvine, California.



My dad is a former Navy man and proudly served in WW II on the USS Saratoga, an aircraft carrier with wooden decks. Funny, I have always remembed this fact about the USS Saratoga. Maybe it's because wooden decks seem like something from… Continue

Added by Michael L. Atkinson on June 14, 2008 at 11:03am — 1 Comment

Is the workplace the right place for young workers to give & get help – why or why not?

By: Joel Bennett, PhD



Organizational Wellness & Learning Systems

(www.organizationalwellness.com)





“I used to think… ‘What they do on their time is their business.’ After 20 years as a restaurant manager, I’ve changed. If they don’t stay healthy and watch their drinking, it affects me, the team, the customers, and the bottom-line.”
- GM



I could start this out by talking about this great team building program we developed that improves… Continue

Added by Joel Bennett on June 13, 2008 at 2:30pm — 2 Comments

Random Acts of Awesomeness

Ran-dom Acts of Awes-ome-ness:



1. Making someone’s day, making them smile, or blush when they least expect it.

2. Revealing someone else’s or your own “Awesomeness”



I dig the high I get from giving, making someone’s day and plain just being a good human being. If we did it more we’d be happier people. Our self esteem, relationships, work life and sex life would all improve.



Here are just a few of my favorite random acts of… Continue

Added by Amanda Hite on June 13, 2008 at 1:44pm — 10 Comments

When Empowerment Fails!

When Empowerment Fails!



What you can do to make it work for you and your team.



I’m Bob Anderson, President of Star Performance, Inc. I have been consulting, and training in the hospitality industry for over 20 years. I help organizations to increase revenues, improve their overall service results and decrease costly associate turnover. I am honored to be speaking at the upcoming CHART conference in Washington D.C. I will be speaking on a favorite subject of mine:… Continue

Added by Bob Anderson on June 13, 2008 at 11:48am — 1 Comment

Quickly growing from 55 to 58 stores in only 60 days!

Whew! Our 55th Store opened with an opening sales week of a mere $97,500...not too shabby!



Shortly after the last of the VIP champagne had been finished, the doors opened and our Elite trainers leaving, we announced that we had bought three Applebee's from ASI! All in the Deleware Market, Hello more training!!!! LOL



I am truly pleased that our little company has decided to grow through buying territory from ASI as opposed to building them from the ground up. I see this as… Continue

Added by Amanda Vroom on June 13, 2008 at 10:32am — No Comments

Social Networking & New Employees

One of the things I've seen that makes a person want to stay or leave a restaurant or any organization, is their ability to establish their own social network at work.



People who establish these stick around -- friends don't want to leave friends -- even if the boss is less than stellar or the work isn't the most interesting.



Those new to the workforce might not understand this dynamic. The "old timers" might not understand how important it is to let the new folks "in" and… Continue

Added by Sandra Spivey on June 13, 2008 at 8:37am — 2 Comments

"Save Budweiser- Save Our Beer"

Dear Friends,

I have just read and signed the online petition:

"Save Budweiser- Save Our Beer"

hosted on the web by PetitionOnline.com, the free online petition service, at:

http://www.PetitionOnline.com/SaveBud/

I personally agree with what this petition says, and I think you might agree, too. If you can spare a moment, please take a look, and consider signing yourself.

Best wishes,

Joe Archuleta

Added by Joe Archuleta on June 12, 2008 at 9:50pm — 1 Comment

So Who am I with in this Picture ?

Added by The Tortilla Guy on June 12, 2008 at 6:39pm — 5 Comments

Some Grain Market Perspective

Before I take my turn and dive into the grain markets I would suggest that some perspective is needed first. Because of the recent inclement weather in the Midwest, lives have been lost, families have been displaced and damage to people’s livelihood has occurred. I speak to that first because it is most important and we should all keep that in mind when becoming frustrated over the current crop and market conditions. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that people will remember this crop year… Continue

Added by David Maloni on June 12, 2008 at 2:21pm — No Comments

Is Lodi Making California's Best Zinfandels?

I suppose that before I go making bold-faced statements like Lodi is making the best Zinfandels in California today, I should at least qualify it. So if you will,



1. In recent years I simply have not found Zinfandels from anywhere else in the state that have been as consistently good, i.e. Zinfandel-ish, in the $12-$19 retail price range as those from Lodi. In the restaurant business, where I’m coming from, this means wines I can sell for $6-$9 a glass, which is where most… Continue

Added by Randy Caparoso on June 12, 2008 at 2:11pm — 1 Comment

Things for the everyday Restaurant Manager

I will be putting tips and suggestions that I hear from guests and other restaurant workers to help with the everyday grind. Please feel free to add yours.

Added by Las Vegas Joe on June 12, 2008 at 2:04pm — No Comments

Grape Soda Cocktails

We are having the great Grape Soda debate at work and I need your help.
What is your favorite Grape Soda Alcohol Cocktail?

Thank you for your help.

Don't forget to visit the bartending challenge at www.bartendingchallenge.com

Added by Sam on June 12, 2008 at 8:03am — No Comments

Hell's Kitchen 6/10

Another poor choice eliminating Bobby! Bobby may not have been the strongest but he wasn't the worst. Jen should have been booted but its definitely reality t.v. for sure.



Christina is showing some good signs but is she really ready to be an executive chef at a real restaurant where she has to make decisions? I don't think so~



How did they score the Hawaiian tropic models, pretty awesome, but then again all of the promoters now want a piece of the advertisement on the… Continue

Added by Sam on June 11, 2008 at 1:24pm — 2 Comments

What is DIVERSITY and Why Should I Care?

By Gregg Ward, CMC

Workshop Presenter at CHART Conference: August 10, 2008



A few months ago, I was sitting at a swanky professional association dinner in a nice hotel in San Diego chatting with a corporate attorney, a chief financial officer and a number of other corporate officers - all white people - when one of them asked me what I do. I replied "I'm a diversity expert." Blank faces...none of them, not one, knew what I meant.

To be honest, I'm pretty used to that… Continue

Added by Gregg Ward, CMC on June 10, 2008 at 4:45pm — 4 Comments

Moving on up

After a nice discussion with my boss, I will be moving into the role of sales and marketing manager of our company. The last year has seen tremendous growth and the current sales manager is also our portfolio director and doesn't have time for both. That means I will where 2 hats. Sales manager and Rep. I just hope we can continue this growth trend.

Added by David McGuffin on June 10, 2008 at 3:46pm — 1 Comment

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National News

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On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina, which was recently acquired by Border Holdings, LLC, an affiliate of Argonne Capital Group, today announced the appointment of Ward Whitworth as President of On The Border.

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Restaurants, Inc. announced today that it is actively seeking franchisees to expand its presence throughout the Lone Star State, naming El Paso and Houston as target markets for future franchise development.

Encore Restaurants Purchases 8 Existing Five Guys Restaurants, Plans to Develop 45 More

Encore Restaurants, LLC, a subsidiary of Dallas-based Encore Enterprises, Inc., has announced the purchase of eight existing Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurants across central California including Elk Grove, Fresno, Lodi, Natomas, Roseville, Stockton, Tracy, and West Sacramento.

Takeout Orders to Hotels Jumped 125% in Popularity in Last Three Years

For many Americans, hotel room service is considered a travel luxury; however, data from PFK Hospitality Research1 suggests that room service revenues fell 9.5 percent from 2007 to 2012, with some hotels shuttering unprofitable operations altogether.

National Restaurant Association Praises House and Senate Commerce Committee Passage of Travel Promotion Act

Yesterday the National Restaurant Association (NRA) praised the House passage and Senate Commerce Committee markup of the Travel Promotion, Enhancement and Modernization Act of 2014. The bipartisan legislation reauthorizes Brand USA, the nation’s first global marketing campaign, to promote the United States as a destination for international travelers.

CROWD FUNDING

If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.

TED TALKS VIDEO

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Have you ever wondered: Am I a human being? Ze Frank suggests a series of simple questions that will determine this. Please relax and follow the prompts. Let's begin …

TED: Heather Barnett: What humans can learn from semi-intelligent slime - Heather Barnett (2014)

Inspired by biological design and self-organizing systems, artist Heather Barnett co-creates with physarum polycephalum, a eukaryotic microorganism that lives in cool, moist areas. What can people learn from the semi-intelligent slime mold? Watch this talk to find out.

TED: Shih Chieh Huang: Sculptures that’d be at home in the deep sea - Shih Chieh Huang (2014)

When he was young, artist Shih Chieh Huang loved taking toys apart and perusing the aisles of night markets in Taiwan for unexpected objects. Today, this TED Fellow creates madcap sculptures that seem to have a life of their own—with eyes that blink, tentacles that unfurl and parts that light up like bioluminescent sea creatures.

TED: Nikolai Begg: A tool to fix one of the most dangerous moments in surgery - Nikolai Begg (2013)

Surgeons are required every day to puncture human skin before procedures — with the risk of damaging what's on the other side. In a fascinating talk, find out how mechanical engineer Nikolai Begg is using physics to update an important medical device, called the trocar, and improve one of the most dangerous moments in many common surgeries.

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