Vice President & Owner of Pony Up
“I always played team sports growing up and the restaurant industry is the real life version of that. Every team member plays their role and supports one another to make it work. The best part of my job is putting together that all-star team that wins every night. „
More projects, more responsibility, more experience. When you work for a restaurant group, you can always make yourself available to do more because there is always work to be done. The more I do, the more I learn. Each restaurant has a different way of doing things and I get inspired when I see someone doing something better or more efficiently. I learn from that and use it!
I have always looked up to the people who have been able to get the most out of me. My bosses who have asked what I thought, instead of telling me how it is or how it should be. Working at Daniel Patterson Group, with Ron Boyd and Daniel Patterson, I have been more inspired than ever. My opinion matters and they challenge me to think creatively. I also have the autonomy to operate in an efficient and effective way.
I rarely get surprised as my eyes are constantly scanning the room, anticipating guests needs as well as my team’s.
When I am hiring or mentoring, I look for specific characteristics that cannot be taught: self motivation, genuine warmth, and inherent hospitality. I also look for someone who will push themselves to their limits and then allows you to push them even further.
Ask questions! Even if you think you know all the answers, never stop asking questions. There is nothing worse than someone closed off to learning and growing. I have also learned though, before you ask the question, investigate for yourself first. Teaching yourself will help you ask more educated questions.
Hillstone's management training program was the perfect fit for me and was also a turning point in my career. The company moved me around so much. I had to learn to adapt to new environments, new people and CHANGE, which has been incredibly useful throughout my career. I can be thrown into any restaurant and start working instantly; all I need to do is assess the space, ask the right questions, and insert myself where I can be most effective.
Alex Campbell, the General Manager of Mister A's, once told me,"Not a lot of people are good at what we do. If it comes easy to you, you like, and you are good at it, you are already ahead of the game." I was in college at the time, so I finished my business degree and took everything I had learned in school and applied it to the restaurant business. I have loved what I do ever since.
Disclaimer: Individuals featured in the Inspirational Career Timelines section have been nominated by peers, colleagues and/or other members of the hospitality industry. It is to the best of our knowledge that each individual has demonstrated leadership and acted as a positive role model for others.
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