Making employees love you

Published in FSD Update

By 
Sara Rush Wirth, Senior Editor

Turnover hit prerecession levels last year, with three out of four vacancies coming when an employee takes another job. And when staffers leave, it costs. Replacing an hourly team member, for example, comes at a $1,100 price tag, according to Dallas research firm TDn2K. So it pays to keep staff happy.

That’s part of the reason that Joanne Chang works hard at maintaining the culture she’s created at her four Flour bakeries, her restaurant Myers + Chang and newly opened commissary kitchen, all in Boston. “It’s easier to hire and keep people,” she says. As she’s expanded from her first bakery in 2000, her emphasis on a supportive, encouraging culture has helped growth: Not only do many staffers stay for a long time and advance with the company, but it’s helped spread Flour’s reputation as a good employer in the community.

“You can’t just preach it,” says Chang. “It’s an active thing we do to push culture. We’re aware and present and watching.” For Chang, it starts with knowing the names of her 300-plus employees. And it doesn’t hurt that she’s come up with some nontraditional methods and programs that drive it home.

1. Ban on swearing

man paying swear jar

While this rule only is in place at the bakeries—“It’s kind of hard at the restaurant,” she says—it adds to the positive environment that brings out the best in employees, Chang says.

Pages

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Italian food hall chain Eataly is making plans for a 2018 initial public offering in its home country, according to a report this week in Financial Times.

The company plans to list shares on the Italian stock exchange in Milan “as early as next year,” Eataly Executive Chairman Andrea Guerra told Financial Times .

Eataly is eager to expand the presence of its massive Italian food emporiums in the U.S., which have helped spur the growing food hall trend . The company has five locations here, with two in New York City and one each in Chicago, Los Angeles and Boston. Financial...

Industry News & Opinion

Students staffing the foodservice department at Rutgers University will soon get an hourly pay bump, as the New Brunswick, N.J., university is raising its wage for student workers to $11 an hour, philly.com reports.

The increase will go in effect Jan. 1 and will impact 13,000 students.

The fight to raise wages at the school was spearheaded by student group United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS), which is continuing to push the university to increase student wages to $15.

The fight for a $15 wage for student workers has spread at schools throughout the country,...

Industry News & Opinion

After shutting down 265 schools due to ongoing wildfires, the Los Angeles Unified School District kept three schools open on Friday and Saturday to provide meals for students and their families, the Los Angeles Times reports.

At one of the schools, employees and volunteers handed out around 100 meals on Friday and 270 meals on Saturday. The meals included items such as dragonfruit punch, raisins, bananas, sunflower kernels, whole-grain cinnamon graham crackers, sunflower seed butter and fat-free chocolate milk.

Around 80% of students in the district come from low-income...

Sponsored Content
Breakfast chili

From Bush’s Best®.

While decadent plates of French toast and pancakes stacked high will always be breakfast favorites, it’s undeniable that savory breakfast items are on the rise in many foodservice operations. Menu items such as avocado toast and omelets aren’t new, of course, but consumers’ preferences for better-for-you food choices, along with their desire for global flavors, are driving this trend.

According to a recent Technomic Breakfast report, consumer demand for vegetarian ingredients has led to an increase of ingredients like soy, tofu, beans, lentils, seeds,...

FSD Resources