Both big and small, accomplishments play an important role in the success of hospitality teams. Acknowledging these wins is also important. We asked seven hospitality leaders to share how they celebrate with their teams.


"We throw parties! Get me a DJ, order up a platter of pastrami sandwiches from Katz deli, batch up some of our favorite cocktails, ice down some beers and get together as a group to celebrate. Oh, and swag -- T-shirts, hats, that sort of thing. If you're with us for a long time, you grow quite the collection."

- Thomas Radecki, Food + Beverage Director at 85 10th Restaurants (Al Coro, Mel's, Discolo)

"I love my team. I couldn’t do what I do if it wasn’t for them. I am grateful that they show up everyday to work hard, put their heads down and follow my lead.

We always treat each other with a tremendous amount of respect as human beings. We also don’t let the moments pass by that are worthy of a celebration, even if it is pulling out a bottle of champagne to celebrate what we are doing, so that we can celebrate all of the little milestones as well as the big ones.

On occasion, we go out to eat at places as a team, we talk about food, we visit farms and other people who inspire us. By making this type of education through experience available to them, it’s a way that we celebrate. We also talk about wealth building — investing in yourself, your future and your family — so that they can grow beyond the paycheck-to-paycheck bullsh*t, we all live in. Instead we should all have retirement funds. We want to help them figure it out."

- Russell Jackson, Chef / Owner at Reverence

"We share the wins with the team as a motivational tool, but also because it brings us together -- we announce it through one of our platforms or during our daily meetings to motivate us before service."

- Rita Prata Felgar-Leasure, Assistant General Manager / Floor Manager at Cranes


"Celebrating our wins is huge for us - we take all of our teams out for fun events like bowling night, or we'll have smaller dinners with managers or key staff. I also love that our teams celebrate their own wins - they go out for drinks to celebrate the end of a financial period, or they'll have pizza night after a busy shift. It's important, especially in an industry that is hyper-intense and such an emotional roller coaster!"

- Téa Ivanovic, Co-Founder and COO at Immigrant Food

"We hold celebratory meetings, dinners, parties or gatherings to laugh and share a drink or meal in another environment outside of work."

- Angel Guillen, General Manager at Elcielo Restaurant

"I'm a big fan of "ups" and words of affirmation. It doesn't have to be a formal thing, but it doesn't take much to acknowledge someone's hard work in real time. As a crew, however, we really enjoy celebrating with group dinners and time spent together. We like to check out new restaurants and bars and give everyone an opportunity to enjoy themselves and take a deep breath."

- Dan Whalen, President of Hospitality at Harbor Bay Hospitality 

"I try to give little compliments “Oh wow, that looks really good!” or “The client and their guests loved the food at the wedding, well done everyone”. Just acknowledging hard work is enough sometimes."

- Megan Salim, Kitchen Administrator at Deborah Miller Catering