Change is Needed

A quote that I love is this, “What got you here, won’t get you there.” 

I recently went to a food show for the restaurant industry and got to talking to a handful of venders that offer different options and substitutes for products that contain allergens.  I was shocked that they only had so much of the marketplace when this food evolution is in such a huge swing. 

People are not just on these “diets” because they are the next fad, but because of the long term health benefits and because it could be life or death.  Even with such pressure and desire from their customers, restaurants are slow to change.  Some of the biggest reasons are space, which is money, and the fact they already have hundreds of items in their restaurant, and they can’t possibly carrier every little option. 

Space, and which option best meets their customers needs are two giant issues.  You can’t be everything to everyone so you will have to upset a few folks.  It’s not easy, but as a restaurant, or for any company in the service industry, you need to find out what your customer actually wants and desires and give it to them.  You need to constantly be talking to your customer and making the appropriate changes, not for changes sake, but because that is the only way your business will thrive. 

No matter what industry you are in, the only way you can make these tough choices is by knowing your companies brand.  Once you know that, you can make those tough choices that lead to better serving your customer.  There are a million options out there, but when you know your company and it’s number one customer, those choices become easy. 

Remember, “What got you here, won’t get you there.” 


For Better or Worse, In Sickness and in Health


These past 11 days have been rather unique.  I recently had surgery on my hip… yes, I am 31 years old and had to get some work done on my right hip.  Even though it was outpatient surgery it still shook things up quite a bit.  I have been on crutches, unable to drive, limited in some of my functions and mobility, and have had to be far less active than I normally am.  Through all of these changes and issues, my wife has been a freaking beast and has killed it.

“For better or worse, in sickness and in health.”  Most of us whom are married have uttered these words, and over these past 11 days my wife has perfectly executed on them.  I am blown away at her level of service and how she so deeply cared for me.  She met my every need and then some. She was always there asking what I needed and offered up help and solutions to problems and wants I didn’t even know that I had

It’s in these inciting incidents, these moments of giant change, when we as people can really shine and make an impact, and that is what my wife did.  It has encouraged me to take my game up to 11 and serve her not because of what she has done for me, but because she is more than worth it.  When you are served and loved in this way, it only encourages you to do the same.  So please let this blog not only honor my wife, but be an encouragement to you to honor those words, “For better or worse, in sickness and in health.” Let this blog be an encouragement to look around you and serve well those that are in your life.

Who is in your life that you need to serve well, and how can you live it out today?


The Year of ASK Part 2

I’m not sure about you, but if I had to choose between a toxic or healthy culture, I choose healthy everyday.  The real question is, if you find yourself in a place that breeds distrust, anxiety, and broken teams, how can you counteract that and fight against that toxic culture?  Today we are going to look at the second of three things that we need to do to start shaping and shifting the culture of where we find ourself.  If you missed the first post… just click here.

The second thing we can do in the year of ASK that will help to shape and shift the culture of where we are is that if you See Something, Say Something. It’s as simple as that. If you see something, say something.  The reason why this is so important is because what is seen is measured and what is measured is repeated.

If you want something to be repeated, or stopped, make sure you comment on it.  As people, we are conditioned to respond to positive and negative feedback.  We all long to be part of a community and it is this longing that makes us respond to the feedback that we get.  If we are complimented or encouraged with an action we have done, we repeat it because we want that same encouraging feedback.  If we are doing something wrong and called out on it, that feeling of angst or discomfort keeps us from doing that same action again.

This action of Seeing and Saying not only affects the one it is directed at, but also the others that are a part of the group.  People aren’t idiots and they pick up on what is expected, praised, and belittled.  They see what is working and they themselves start to repeat those actions because they long for the same feedback.

Whether you’re a leader or not, start implementing this simple idea and watch how the culture begins to change. 

Dad Life: Kids

Vomit Changes Things.

Don’t you find it that even the best laid plans change?  I mean, we can come up with the perfect plan for an outing, or anniversary, or whatever it may be, and something game changing will come along and make it so our plans have to be changed.
Well, last night, one of those game changing things happened.  I was working on a project at the house and Lindsay had taken our son over to her parents to give me the space needed to work, because as you know, toddlers don’t really understand the whole, “Hey buddy, daddy is working so can you play over there, and totally ignore these cool tools and everything that is happening over here” thing.
Well the hours of Sam free project time were cut short with a single phone call telling me that our little man had thrown up at Nena and Pops’ house.  Yes, the joys of throw up.  He gets home and acts sort of normal. We give him a bath to help clean him up and I lay in his bed with him so we can play one of his favorite games on my phone.  Lindsay and I talk about bringing a small snack upstairs, but as soon as this kid hears anything about food, he sits strait up and starts getting out of bed and saying “Chair!” I mean the kid throws up a couple of hours ago, isn’t feeling well, but he “needs” to sit in his chair to eat.  I love this guy.
Well we give him a banana and couple pieces of bread and he has a few moments where he says his tummy hurts, but over all, everything goes on like normal.  We bring him up to his room, play a game for a minute and then put him to bed letting him know to call out for us if he doesn’t feel well.
IMG_2975As Lindsay and I are in our bathroom, she looks at the monitor and see’s Sam sit strait up.  I rush into the room, grab the bowl, and in the nick of time bring it to him.  Sam clutches the bowl, takes in a deep breath and then lets it loose.  Side note, it was the best smelling throw up I have ever had the privilege of smelling…kind of like a banana smoothie.  Well… needless to say, we wiped his face, cleaned the bowl, and rubbed is back until he was almost asleep.
Throw up, as well as many other things, sure do have a way of changing our plans, but its how we respond that matters.  My wife responds perfectly.  Me on the other hand, I don’t respond well all the time.  I wish I was more nurturing and pro-active instead of reactive.  I wish I was just a little better at meeting the needs of others in these moments.  I wish I was less selfish, and did a better job of serving selflessly instead of serving selfishly, but I have an amazing wife who can help me become better at responding when issues like this arrive.