Real-life advice from a real-life recruiter

Posts tagged ‘scholarships’


What do Bill Murray, Garth Brooks, Bette Midler and a dog all have in common? These were the last guests on classic late night television talk shows in the past years. Letterman, Leno, Carson and Parr, respectively, all said goodbye in a definitive way. And just like those guys, so must we with our Eat’n Park Career Connection BLOG.

We started the BLOG back in November 2011. The first subject was “A Woman’s POV on why to work in the Hospitality Industry.” Over the next five years we have discussed topics such as Professional Advantage, Conflict in the Workplace, Benefits of a Smile and Online Etiquette. We also saw highlights of our team members and recently, we learned about the upcoming workforce with Generation Z. It has been a wonderful five years and we really appreciate all of you that have stopped in and read along with us. We wanted you to know that we have enjoyed your comments and your “likes” each time.

While we can’t be as cool as David Letterman and signoff with a celebrity, however, we feel that you, the followers, are the celebrities. Always checking in and reading what we have to say. We hope that you have learned some things, met some great people that you didn’t know and hopefully shared with friends and other team member some of our topics.

Thank you once again but it is time for us to say Good-bye. Adios. Adieu. Ciao. Farewell. You will be missed.

When looking to hire, being too narrow in your search could be limiting your success

According to Paul Wolfe, Sr. VP of HR at Indeed, he says one of the biggest mistakes in hiring is not having a diverse slate of candidates. “Think of diversity of age, experience, background, race and gender, all of which help bring diversity of thought,” Wolfe said. “[This] can make organizations more successful and keep organizations growing and progressing.”

Once you have identified your hiring need, make sure you are looking to interview many different types of people. Not only will this increase the hiring traffic in your restaurant, it will also make your restaurant more interesting to future team members. You will begin to attract better talent as you widen and hire new team members. You will also be surprised of what they can bring to the table. The better the hiring choices you make, the better your location will run.

A good diverse work staff will also radiate a good reputation. Customers notice everything, from a clean restroom to an amazing server. Don’t customers turn into employees? Also, your diverse team members will spread the word to friends and family, increasing your application flow. You never know where the next superstar is coming from.

You should not be searching for someone just like you or the rest of your team members. Don’t be afraid to bring in experience from another concept or someone that may challenge our company. Being open to options will also make you and your team grow and find ways to do something in another way.

Look outside the box. It can bring you a staffed restaurant, new ways of solving problems, more future applicants, a killer reputation and increased sales!

Using Scheduling as a Recruiting/Retention Tool

Let’s face it! We all know that the restaurant industry has some crazy shifts it needs to cover. In our case, Eat’n Park is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late evening. We even have some locations that are open 24 hours. We need to attract team members that have flexibility in their availability, but we, as managers, need to be consistent in scheduling all these hours.

According to an article written by Ron Ruggless from Nation’s Restaurant News, he states that unpredictable and inconsistent scheduling practices for team members affect not only retention, but the ability to recruit new workers. Some team member scheduling concerns included those previously mentioned and the dreaded “clopening” shifts. A clopen shift is when someone is scheduled to close, then open the restaurant the very next morning.

In a recent WorkJam survey (WorkJam is an employee relationship management platform), they found that 46% of restaurants reported frequently or sometimes being understaffed. Of those, 53% said it compromised the customer experience. Why? Most often when you find dissatisfied team members you will also find dissatisfied guests. This leads to higher staff turnover, poor customer service, less repeat guests and declining sales.

In addition, the survey also proved that 60% of team members said the most difficult part of a job search was finding positions that fit their schedules and that were close to home. Also, 26% of team members left their last job because of inconsistent schedules. However, 68% of managers said the most difficult part of scheduling was assigning shifts that took care of business need and staff availability.

Joshua Ostrega, COO for WorkJam said, “To maintain growth and minimize costs, businesses must quickly adopt more comprehensive systems to manage the employer-employee relationship. Managers need to realize that investing in better ways of hiring, scheduling and managing employees is an investment in the company’s bottom line.”

When you take a look at your own scheduling, ask yourself, “Do I use best practices when I produce a team member schedule?”

Here is a list of best practices of a great schedule:

  1. Post it on time and within enough time that team members can plan out their week. If schedules are posted a week or less in advance, frustrations is created for them.
  2. Keep scheduling consistent. Team members don’t want big changes week to week.
  3. Treat everyone fairly. Do not play favoritism.
  4. Make sure closes, opens, mid and overnight shifts flow from day to day. Avoid “Clopening.”
  5. Schedule your staff according to business need but accommodates team member availability. This is were flexibility come into play. Also, hiring the right person.

Scheduling is a very difficult science. It has to blend a myriad of details from hiring the right people, hiring the availability the business is dictating, posting it on time, good flow from shift to shift and being honest and fair. If we throw all the different ingredients into the scheduling pot, stir it up and create a fantastic schedule, you will be sure to keep your team members happy, your environment positive, guest happy and returning to do more business with you. I encourage you to take a good, long look at your team member scheduling practices and make any adjustment you think you need to make.


Generation Z. What else do we want to know?

Last week we talked about Generation Z, the group of young people entering the workforce behind the Millennials. They are tech savvy, they expect technology in the workplace but feel uncomfortable about the future due to September 11 and the Great Recession in 2007.

Today, let’s learn about how they feel about Education and how they like to learn.

According to Northeastern University, 81% of Gen Z think a college education is necessary to succeed in the workforce. However, about 54% of those are concerned about the financial commitment and the affordability of an education. They also begin to think about college early in high school. This would be a great time to speak to them about  Scholarship Programs. Letting them know about the options they have available.

They love to go to the internet to find information, who doesn’t? But Gen Z likes to learn on their own vs. group work. However, they do like to do their own work around others. Remember last week we learned they are entrepreneurs?  Giving them projects and problems to solve will drive this group to perform.  Also, they want their teachers to be engaging and help apply their theories. How can we translate this to the work environment? As a manager, we would want to assemble the group, have them do research on their own, then come back to tell us what they found out. As a manager, be prepared to join in, be interested in their ideas and become part of the solution process.  Help apply their ideas with them. You will have to get your hands dirty, but if you do, you will reach this generation on a new level and get a higher performance out of them. If you find yourself presenting material or procedures to them, rethink the way you are doing this. Get them involved. Get yourself involved and watch how day to day operations begin to run smoothly.

We’ll see you next week when we continue on discussion on this emerging generation.

Generation Z is coming!!

Get ready- Generation Z is coming!!!! WAIT! They’re already here!!!

GenZ, iGeneration, iGen,The Globals, The Founders or whatever name the media will define them, the generation after the Millennials are in the work force!

The first group out the gate were around 7 or 8 when the September 11 attacks hit the World Trade Centers in New York. That was 15 years ago. They are in their early 20’s, finishing college and are in the work force. What does that mean? Well, if you have anyone age 15-23 working in your restaurant, they are Gen Z. Here are some early data on the newest generation to hit workforce.


Noteworthy aspect: widespread usage of the internet. While the Millennials had to deal with “dial-up” internet, Gen Z doesn’t even know what that is. In 2001, Blackberry put out the first “smartphone”. A phone that could send and receive email, take pictures and surf the internet with a keypad. Gen Z were around 8 years old. In 2007, Apple reinvented the smartphone with their version, the iPhone. Then, the iPad. At this time, Gen Z were in high school and college. Also, with the surge of cable internet and wifi, having a phone in your hands to do everything became the norm for this generation. If the Millennials were the “I want it right now” generation, Gen Z is “I want it 5 minutes ago” and they deliver. Forbes magazine suggested that when Gen Z enters the workplace, digital technology would be an aspect of almost all career paths. Gen Z expects high technology with employers. Millennials grew up with Facebook and the introduction of YouTube for social media. Gen Z want it faster with Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. This generation doesn’t watch YouTube, they create videos for YouTube.

Life Impact on this generation: September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001. The Great Recession in 2007. These two events have impacted their belief systems. They have uncomforting feelings and uncertainty as they were being raised during these difficult times. They are the children of Generation X and are the group that are least likely to believe in the American Dream.  They are independent and have the drive to be entrepreneurs. They have to, they saw first hand how their parents and the nation struggled in that decade.


So, this is the introduction into this next generation. Stay tuned next week to find out more about their personality and data that will impact the workforce for now and the next decade.

Living Foward

Last week I shared the importance of prioritizing so you can have a fulfilled life. I ended the discussion enlisting you in the challenge of writing out what’s most important to you. Did you rise to the occasion? If not… it’s not to late- do it now J

Once you’ve completed your list, I encourage you to take advantage of this wonderful, free tool from the authors of the book “Living Forward” by Michael Hyatt & Daniel Harkavy. This assessment is designed to help you assess each of your priorities so you can see where you are doing well and identify areas where you may want to invest more time and focus.

Upon you completing the assessment, you’ll be able to immediately view your results. Also they’ll email you a link so you can access them whenever you want.

Check it out…It’s take about 15 minutes to complete.

What do you really want?

Did you know that the average person spends more time planning for vacation than for their retirement…? To be honest to most it makes perfect logical sense if you’re thinking in terms of “things that are fun and soon” versus “things that are necessary and far away”.

Today I’m not going to speak to you about the importance of planning for retirement, today I’m going to share information with you to help you prioritize what’s REALLY important to YOU. Maybe it is your goal to travel and explore the world or maybe your goal is to retire by 45. My point is you’ll need to put actions in place to attain what you want.

A great starting point is to begin with thinking about what’s the most important to you and you can start the process TODAY (the most challenge part is always to start, but YOU CAN DO THIS J ) by coming up with 5-10 life accounts that are important to you.

Here are examples of some of my priorities:

  • Intellectual development
  • Health
  • Spiritual
  • Family
  • Career
  • Hobbies
  • Financial
  • Service/Volunteering

*Now once you’ve thought about what’s most important to you, WRITE IT DOWN J in order of importance.*

Stay tuned to next weeks BLOG… I’ll be sharing a useful tool from the book “Living Forward” that will help and encourage you in creating the life you truly want!