Christina LeMin

Christina LeMin, senior marketing specialist for Government Services at Sodexo, boosted sales during the recession by bringing a creative and innovative approach, such as implementing a “candy” store with sweet, salty, energy and healthy snacks.

Why Selected?

Ann Vogel, vice president of operations for Sodexo, says: Christina boosted sales during the recession by bringing a creative and innovative approach, such as implementing a “candy” store with sweet, salty, energy and healthy snacks. Christina created the “wow” wheel, which provides consumers a chance to win promotional incentives at our grand opening celebrations, driving sales and participation.

Details

Senior Marketing Specialist, Sodexo, Government Services, Brookhaven, PA
Age: 29
Education: B.S. in hospitality management from Widener University, Chester, Pa.
Years at organization: 8

Get to know

Q. What has been your proudest accomplishment?

Sodexo provides us with a very robust program in terms of promotions, wellness and sustainability, but sometimes our clientele need something more customized to current trends. So I am proud that I’ve been able to take Sodexo programs and either take them to the next level or customize them to make them even more what our customers are looking for.

Q. What would you say you excel at over more seasoned colleagues?

I would say my adaptability to change or an acceptance to change. Because we are so reliant on these current trends, we may have to shift gears from one priority to the next pretty quickly.

Q. What's the best career advice you've been given?

Not to take things personally. Or realize that if I’m receiving some constructive criticism, it is not from lack of effort on my end, it’s just from a sense of needing redirection on what I’m doing.

Q. What's been the biggest challenge you've had to overcome?

I think it’s trying to take those current trends and utilizing the resources we have but still taking our programs to the next level. So really developing those programs based on what they are requesting, even when some of our resources may be limited. It’s a lot of trying to be creative and thinking outside the box to give our clients what they are looking for.

Q. What's been your most rewarding moment?

I create a lot of programs, so to see them come out in our cafés and to see all the work and marketing efforts I’ve done in print and in product available to our customers and then seeing they are energized by it is great.

Q. What would you like to accomplish in your career in the next two years?

I want to entertain getting my master’s degree.

Q. What's been your funniest on-the-job disaster?

A couple of months ago I was involved in an opening where 50% of the items were sold by weight. Opening day was highly anticipated, and our register scales did not work. We really found how valuable good ol’ calculators were.

Under 30

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
bowling ball pins

We patterned our chef culinary competition after the one pioneered by the University of Massachusetts. This year, 11 teams of college chefs registered. Each team gets the same market basket and has two hours to prepare three dishes. The starting times have to be staggered and nobody wants the 6 a.m. slot, so instead of randomly assigning times, this year we took the teams bowling and used their scores to determine starting times. The two teams with the highest combined bowling score got to pick their time slot first. Going bowling built camaraderie and team spirit before the teams even got...

Managing Your Business
performance review anxiety

For all the most obvious reasons, managers and staff don’t always agree. But both sides can get behind retiring annual performance reviews, according to a January survey from software company Adobe, which quit the practice in 2012. There, 64% of surveyed workers and 62% of supervisors consider yearly evaluations outdated.

“My philosophy is if I have to wait a year to tell you where you stand, it’s a little too late,” says Al Ferrone, senior director of dining services at the University of California at Los Angeles. Ferrone and other operators are reforming the meetings to add real...

Ideas and Innovation
woman sick phone bed

Our employees have paid time off, but if they don’t call in at least one hour before their scheduled shift, their PTO will be docked for the day. We also assign points for unapproved absences. Everyone starts with a freebie, and when they get to 4, then we start the disciplinary action process. When a staff member gets to 10 points, that is grounds for termination.

Ideas and Innovation
app mobile

The capacity of our dining room is 135 guests, and most evenings we serve closer to 160. At times, this led to some residents waiting for a table, especially at peak hours. Our new table management software allows diners to request specific meal times via a mobile app and allows us to space out our service, greatly reducing the wait times and allowing dining staff to prepare each table in advance of their arrival.

FSD Resources