Time for The Goldies

FoodService Director's annual salute to best practices in non-commercial foodservice is now open for entries.

It’s hard to believe we’re almost into October. Where did the summer go? Actually, I have a pretty good idea where my summer went—beaucoup business trips, some of them necessitated by the sale of our company to a group of investors led by a new CEO who has indicated he will be an active participant in trying to grow our business.

Arriving home from the Society for Foodservice Management’s annual conference last week, I began to examine all of the projects that need to be completed before the end of this year. I first thought about the redesign of the magazine that will be launched in January. Then I checked into the plans that are underway for the 2013 MenuDirections conference, to be held next March in Tampa, Fla. That’s when it struck me: We are less than three months away from the deadline for the 2013 Goldies Awards.

The third annual awards program, which celebrates the gold standard in high-volume foodservice, has undergone a few changes. Most significant is that, for the first time, awards will be handed out by market segment, versus by topic. So hospitals will be competing against hospitals, colleges against colleges and so forth. So operators will have the opportunity to be considered the best in their markets.

Second, we will be honoring the “best of the best” with the first Grand Goldie. This will be announced at our awards banquet during the MenuDirections conference.

Operators can consider several elements of their operations to highlight their gold standard approach to service. You can focus on your department’s approach to sustainability, or your wellness efforts, or your skill at focusing on your customers, to name a few. A complete list of suggestions, along with all the information you need to enter the competition, can be found here. And if you need inspiration, you can view videos of last year’s winning entries here.

One final thought: If you’ve entered in the past, and your concept or program didn’t win, don’t hesitate to resubmit it. One of the major criteria is the ability of the idea to stand the test of time. We’ve seen many great ideas entered that hadn’t had enough “seasoning.” You might just have been ahead of your time.

So talk with your staffs about what makes your operations reflect best practices in the industry. Then, make a plan to tell us. The deadline is Dec. 15.

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