More than a job

A peak at challenges and opportunities that operators face.

In the December issue of FoodService Director, our cover story will take a look at 2010. We polled operators to see what challenges and opportunities await them in the coming year, along with the trends that figure to have the most impact on their operations. You will find a representative sampling of their responses in the feature.

One of the respondents was John Strickland, the director of corporate administrative services for the BOSE Corp., Framingham, Mass. Typical of what we’ve been hearing from corporate foodservice directors and liaisons, Strickland’s comments were of the doom and gloom variety. He spoke of “lagging sales on the cash side and dramatically reduced sale in catering.”

“We have seen an increase in brown bag lunches and people are generally just spending less on food,” he added. “Any talk of growth is wishful thinking.”

But then he went on to paint a silver lining around his black cloud. I wanted to share that with you now, rather than wait for the December issue to hit your desks, because it speaks to the collective heart of this industry. Most of the people I have met in this business have a spirit that is not easily suppressed, and that rang clear in John’s closing comment to me.

“Times like these give you an opportunity to strengthen your team’s camaraderie and commitment to excellence as we continue to try to meet or exceed the need of our customers,” he said. “Times are difficult, but we have a job and a mission. There are many among us who don’t have either. Take the time to thank your crew for a job well done. Get the executives in your company to stick their heads in the kitchen after a company even to let people know that their efforts are appreciated. Non-monetary recognition can be a big plus in tough times. In fact, it might be the only reward tool you have.”

I think that’s sound advice.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., will soon switch over from magnetic strip-based student ID cards to chip-based ones, The Observer reports.

Along with being more secure, the new cards will allow students easier access to dining halls, enabling them to simply tap their cards on a reader to gain entrance. Students will also be able to add flex points and Domer Dollars—which can be used at eateries on and off campus—to their accounts via a mobile app.

The new cards are expected to be available by the time school begins next fall.

Read the full story...

Industry News & Opinion

University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., has replaced a fajita bar in one of its dining halls with a superfoods bar, Tommie Media reports.

Aiming to provide more options for athletes and students with dietary restrictions, the new bar offers diners a choice of protein with a variety of toppings, such as beans, fruit, couscous and quinoa.

The superfoods bar has made a few appearances on campus since it was first tried for the school’s football players last summer.

“Word of mouth is getting out, and every day I get a few more people,” Ryan Carlson, a cook at the...

Sponsored Content
gluten free diet

From Stouffer’s.

A large part of menuing allergen-friendly cuisine is deciding which gluten-free items to serve.

In particular, college dining hall operators must decide whether to make gluten-free items in-house or to order gluten-free items from a manufacturer. Some factors to consider are: the size of the university, the demand for gluten-free options,and the ability to have separate gluten-free storage and workspaces in the university dining hall kitchen.

According to FoodService Director , 77% of college and university operators purchase their gluten-free...

Industry News & Opinion

Reading Hospital in West Reading, Pa., is using robots to help deliver patient meals, BCTV reports.

The eight robots, named TUGs, will be used to transport meals from the hospital’s nutrition services department to patient floors at Reading HealthPlex for Advanced Surgical & Patient Care.

Moving at three miles per hour, the robots will follow preprogrammed routes to the HealthPlex, where room ambassadors will remove room service carts from the TUGs and deliver them to patients. The TUGs will then return to nutrition services with dirty dishes for cleaning.

The...

FSD Resources