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Foodie Friday, Speaker

June 26, 2009

Breakfast with Danny Meyer

Foodie Friday

Yesterday I heard Danny Meyer speak about hospitality. He was asked about food, restaurants and customer service but always managed to loop it back to Hospitality. I had it on very good authority that he was an excellent speaker, and was definitely left hungry for more. This restaurateur, author, business owner and New York mogul welcomed 75 people to Tabla for breakfast. He was interviewed by Dorothy Hamilton of the French Culinary Institute.

What is hospitality?
warm reception, welcome, helpfulness, neighborliness, warmth, kindness, congeniality, geniality, cordiality, courtesy, amenability, generosity, entertainment, catering, food.

Notes from my morning:

-Danny defines hospitality as the experience and how the customer feels as a result.
-Is the hospitality industry right for you? Know yourself, are you happiest when you are making people happy? (Yes, I am!!!)
-Why does he keep opening new restaurants? He has to so he can continue to use his talent, or he’ll lose the good people he’s hired and invested in as their careers progress.

People go to restaurants to “restore” themselves (it is where the word restaurant comes from). Stop life and be a human being instead of a human doing.

Service is like shopping off the rack.
Hospitality is a custom experience. One size fits one, not all.

Hire thoughtfully: Look for a high HQ *hospitality- which is often an instinct you can not train vs. a high IQ.

His new projects include Public Fare in Central Park, Citi Field and a new unnamed Italian restaurant opening in the Gramercy Park Hotel.

I am adding Danny’s book Setting the Table to my must read list. Big thanks to Sobel Media and friends for producing this opportunity.

Do you have a moment that stands out where you have been the recipient of excellent hospitality?

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