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What's Happening
The newsletter for switched on people
Issue 52 April 2003

A serving of productivity
Part 1

In an interview with Anthony Bourdian, the latest business guru, he discusses his best selling book “Kitchen Confidential”.  It’s a question and answer session about how he runs his restaurant businesses in New York. 
Some say his ideas appear to be a draconian style of management.  I’ll leave you to decide with the following excerpts from the interview that appeared in last Financial Review BOSS Annual Magazine.

Q.  What’s your attitude to business?
A.  In The Godfather there’s the line, “This is not personal, it’s business.”  Well that’s exactly the opposite of the truth for me because everything is personal.  You show up late for work, you are personally betraying me.  I have vouched for you, I brought you in.  You owe me personally.

Q. Is inspiring loyalty easy to do?
A. …..You’re not allowed to have personality conflicts. It’s a foxhole mentality, you need to build intense camaraderie…people cover for each other.  It’s a very intimate personal relationship.  You instinctively help each other out because you know they will help you.  No one blames their subordinate for anything.

Q How do you get people at the bottom to perform at their best?
A. Every body from the lowliest scullion to the chef, the waiters even, sit at the bar having a beer, laughing about how many dinners you did, how many returns – hopefully there were none – various adventures and misadventures.  You examine the ways you all brought honour to you client.

Q. You pick the teams, you decide who does what, how does it feel when you see it all come together?
A. …..Our off hours are distracted because we think about all the things that can – and probably will – go wrong.  You’ve got to have a plan B, plan C, and plan D….. so it’s not while it’s happening, it’s when we’ve made it through the fire that I feel elation, joyous camaraderie and accomplishment. 

Q. That sounds amazing all managers should be able to experience that feeling.
A. It is a shared satisfaction, but a deeply personal one because the money isn’t great. ….. it’s a beautiful thing.  You don’t even have to talk about it you just know.

In next month’s What’s Happening you’ll read part two with more talk from Anthony on teams and hiring employees…. You’ll be surprised.

Personally Speaking

Happening People, the TV show is in full pre production swing, with music, set design and guests being organised as I write.  It’s a show designed to add value to people’s lives in a world full of “reality TV”.  Informative? Yes! 
Controversial? Yes! Contemporary?
Yes! Happening? Absolutely! 
It’s about life, both professional and personal.  Stay tuned its coming soon!!!!

 Kind regards,
Sam Day



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