Don't forget to check out this years James Beard Award Winners HERE!!!
Better Execution to Drive Diversity and Inclusion
by Bob Gershberg, CEO/Managing Partner, Wray Executive Search
We have certainly come a long way in recognizing the need for aggressive programs to insure workforce diversity. Attracting and retaining a diverse group of people, however, requires a welcoming and inclusive environment as well as a culture which embraces differences. The ultimate goal is to get beyond the need to mirror communities served and to create a talented team of varied race, gender, age, orientation, lifestyle and cultural background. Leading organizations in any industry are most often those who welcome, value and encourage divergence in thought and perspective.
The latest census results firmly established that the ethnic make-up of the U.S. is changing at a faster rate than anyone anticipated. Corporate America is already aware of the changing demographics; in fact many corporate front-runners established diversity initiatives back in the mid-90s. More than two decades later, the bottom-line results have not been measured in dollars, but rather in the demographics of women and minority recruitment and retention and supplier diversity.
In the talent acquisition process, merely indicating a preference for diversity candidates is not enough. The ability to think outside of the box is often required. The talent pool is at times, somewhat light in gender and race diversity in particular disciplines. When sourcing or recruiting for these disciplines, we are well advised to look at similar fields in which a candidate’s skill sets and competencies are easily transferable.
Fixing a toxic work culture: Guarding against the ‘dark triad’
By Tom Relihan, News Writer, MIT Sloan School of Management
Why It Matters
Toxic employees can affect turnover, productivity, and morale. And they can be harder to deal with than you may think.
You know your company’s culture is toxic, but where is it coming from? Is it a systemic issue? Point-source pollution from a handful of bad eggs? Both?
It’s not always easy to tell. Because toxic leaders and employees are typically confident people, they’re often able to build a large network of followers to camouflage or protect themselves, despite their negative influence, said Deborah Ancona, a professor of leadership at MIT Sloan and founder of the
MIT Leadership Center.
“Toxic leaders are often talking about all the great things that they can do. People are attracted to that and see that as the kind of leader they want,” Ancona said. “Only later, through interaction [with that person] or their behavior over time do you start to see the underbelly that isn’t always visible at first glance.”
And that can have a major impact on your workforce’s morale, productivity, and turnover — and your bottom line. But there are some red flags that can help pick out a toxic person. Here’s how to identify them.
The Language of Restaurant Earnings Calls - Translated
by John Gordon, Principal & Founder of Pacific Management Consulting Group
Four times per year the publicly traded restaurant management teams have the high honor and duty to present their quarterly earnings. These sessions, along with those companies that present to analysts and investors via company investor days, as well as high profile annual meetings like the ICR XChange meeting in January each year, and periodic sell side research firms investor access meetings are carefully watched by investors, observers, analysts, the press and of course, other competitors. It is high anxiety time and a lot of work to get ready for these meetings; it’s a prime way to communicate to investors, analysts, competitors and employees. Privately held companies will present to their lenders or private equity sponsors in much the same way.
Of course, company representatives want to be positive about their company. Over a period of time, a form of “earnings call speak” has evolved, a kind of niche shorthand that is useful to keep in mind for the next time you are listening to a competitor speak or in a cocktail event, boasting about how good your results actually were.
A few of the more commonly heard phrases and translations follow:
Phrase One: “It met our internal expectations”. This refers to sales, or traffic or ticket or hit rate, new store ROI or some other initiative that is still developing; it is not quite worth boasting about yet. It may not even a positive result, although it may be at some future point. It is worth a follow-up in the future, because nothing in this business works as quickly as we hope that it might.
Featuring Jerry and Naomi Hancock, founders of Sub Zero Nitrogen Ice Cream
by Rebecca Patt, Senior Vice President of Development, Wray Executive Search
With a background in chemistry, Jerry Hancock got a nitrogen tank from the army surplus store and started tinkering at home with methods to create custom, flash-frozen ice cream using liquid nitrogen, no freezers required.
A few years went by, and he perfected the process and discovered an innovative new frozen desert concept. Flash freezing with nitrogen gas makes for a smoother, creamier product than traditional ice cream because it does not allow for the forming of large ice crystals. It allows for a variety of ice cream bases and infinite flavor combinations. The concept saves on energy because no freezers are required at the store and nitrogen is used on demand. It also makes impressive theater for the customer to see their custom flavor made in front of them with a burst of liquid nitrogen.