Cathy Mantuano

Cathy Mantuano

Beverage and Service Director of The Joseph

We talk to the team about guest service every single day. We share stories from the prior service that “wowed” a guest and discuss how we can take that attitude and eagerness to the next service. Every day presents a new opportunity to create a lasting impression.

I have learned throughout my career that you cannot take anything for granted. You have to be flexible and willing to try new ways of making a business work.
I knew this profession was the right direction for me when I saw the happiness and comfort guests received from the hospitality I provided. There is something very special about making that kind of an impact on someone’s day or special occasion.
It is so important to try to maintain a healthy work/life balance. I definitely take two days off each week. I might do a little bit of work from home on those days, but taking time away to recharge allows us to work at our best. We also promote this philosophy with our staff at The Joseph. It also helps the team learn to depend on themselves and their co-workers (without me), which makes for a stronger team.
I ask the person I'm interviewing what they are passionate about in their work – I’m looking for someone who is both a natural “giver” as well as someone who has an insatiable curiosity for learning. I also look for individuals who are willing to share their expertise freely and who truly envision themselves as being a part of the team.
The skills I deem most important are: 1) being able to listen to our guests; 2) having the ability to communicate and interact with others in a gracious and giving way – not talking down to people nor boasting about one’s knowledge or position; and 3) to remember that knowing our guests’ needs is the business we are in.
I am fortunate to work with so much emerging talent. In many ways, they remind me of my younger self, and I want to be a mentor to them.
I am grateful to have come up in the hospitality industry at an incredible, prolific time. I have been so fortunate to meet and learn from icons in the restaurant and wine world. I have also had the opportunity to travel and take in so much that I want to share those experiences and insights with others. It brings me joy.
Working with and fostering new talent is the most inspiring part of my day-to-day. Traveling and meeting new people in food and wine also tops the list.
I read as much as I can about wine and make it a point to taste something new every day. Also, connecting with my colleagues about what they have learned – as well as what they want to learn and do in their lives – is another great source of education. We have a remarkable team at The Joseph Nashville, and one of the things I love the most is that we can all learn from one another, no matter our station.
Being around people who want to enjoy food and wine, and who are open to new experiences, fuels my passion for hospitality. Seeing how one interaction – whether large or small – can completely enhance someone’s experience is incredibly rewarding. That good feeling, that sense of accomplishment, never gets old.

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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