Confessions of J. Michael Floyd

University of Georgia's J. Michael Floyd hates "helicopter parents" and loves cheesecake.
J. Michael Floyd, executive director of food services at the University of Georgia, in Athens, loves cheesecake, thinks trayless is overrated and wants to meet John Muir.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

Working with students and helping them have a great college experience. I enjoy helping students create great memories.

Q. What is the worst part of your job?

Dealing with “helicopter parents” who still try to manage their children’s lives. 

Q. What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

Leading an award-winning team that cares for its customers. Seventy six national awards since 1986 is a testament to the team’s dedication.

Q. What is the most unusual foodservice/catering request you have ever received?

Opening a unit for a couple to take wedding photos at the commons where they first met. 

Q. What is your favorite meal?

Fresh-caught Alaskan sockeye salmon, with wild rice and grilled asparagus. For dessert, a great piece of cheesecake with fresh berries.

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

The second serving of cheesecake.

Q. What food fad do you wish had never started?

Fried food on a stick.

Q. What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?

Meals prepared by first-time campers.

Q. What do you consider to be the most overrated foodservice trend?

Trayless dining. Only in institutional food service would we try to reduce customer service.

Q. Read the book or see the movie?

Movie, that way if I don’t like it I can sleep. 

Q. What is your most treasured possession?

My wedding band that my wife gave me for our 25th anniversary.

Q. If you could eat dinner with anyone living or dead, who would it be?

Teddy Roosevelt on a vacation to Yellowstone.

Q. If you had a time machine what historical event or era would you visit?

Visiting with John Muir in 1868, as he walked the Yosemite Valley for the first time. I cannot imagine what he first saw that motivated him to campaign for the valley’s conservation and establishment as a national park.

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email computer screen

Communication is key, and [managers] are busy too. One tip I picked up from another director was to label my subject line with the header “action,” “information” or “response” followed by a brief description of the email contents. That way they can filter through their inboxes during their busy days to know which emails need their attention immediately and which they can save to read later.

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