The restaurant game has changed in 2020 and for the foreseeable future.  Not just our industry but economies, academia, lifestyles, freedoms, travel, and plans have been interrupted, altered and derailed.  There is skepticism about the reporting of Coronavirus, conspiracy theories, opinions outweigh facts in almost everything we read and hear, science is spreading fear, there’s unrest in society and on the streets, division is fueled by social media posts, our culture is in an outrage….and loud, there’s continuing controversy over racism and policing, civilization is going through a massive revolution in morality, and at the deepest level, we have a revelation of an even more basic clash of worldviews than most of us could have ever imagined possible.  Simply put, we seem to have lost our way.  So how do we right the ship?  How do we #RISE?  How do we elevate our game?

“Always take the HIGH ROAD and the HIGH FIVE” ~ Pancakeism

By setting a high Expectation of ourselves: 

Remember ‘Above the Fray’ from April 2017?  If not, it’s worth the read at bobbypancake.com.  Here’s an excerpt: “If we choose to be Above the Fray we will need to be courageous, have vision, be adaptable, committed to continuous improvement and always be authentic.  We will need to hold ourselves accountable to the H5H values and the standards within our respective restaurant/sports bar operation.  It means we will support, back up and challenge the other leaders in our business to be better tomorrow than we were today.  It means we stop finding fault and find solutions.  It means that we forgive missteps and offer second chances.  It means we don’t throw in the towel but we throw down the gauntlet on being better.  It means we don’t lower our standards, but we raise people up to the standard.  It means that we are willing to do what the average leader is not willing to do.”

We need to be the example we want others to follow with our thoughts, with our words and in our actions. 

By advancing Education and mentorship: 

We have a responsibility as leaders to meet people where they are and take them where they need to be.  That doesn’t mean so much that we try to convert them to our way of thinking but more about providing them the tools and the facts to make their own decisions and help them reach their goals.  Heck, we should do that ourselves in our personal lives.  Rather than join a movement, we should follow the money to see who is behind it.  Before signing on to a cause, we should research the end game. 

I’ve said it often, we are likely the first “boss” some team members have ever had.  That’s a HUGE responsibility.  It’s possible that the young people we employ didn’t have a parent or a coach to teach them the “right” thing to do in their job, on social media or even provide mentorship around who they are hanging out with.  We are in a position to mold our teams into GREAT performers in the workplace and OUTSTANDING contributors to society.

By promoting Encouragement in our interaction with others: 

Positive energy always creates elevation.  The way we interact with others has a lot to do with our ability to impact and influence the world around us.  As leaders, our role often includes corrective measures or provides us the opportunities to handle the “tough” conversations.  As long as we keep in mind that it is about performance, progress and results and not about personalities, we should be able to keep a level head.  Put People First. 

Enlighten others.  Encourage others.  Empower others.  Elevate.

By learning to Embrace diversity and new ways of doing things:

Keep an open mind or think outside the box are things we like to say to promote creativity.  You can learn much more from someone who disagrees with you than you can from someone with whom you agree. Give yourself the courage and intelligence to do so.

Viewpoints different from your own will not harm you. They mostly have great potential to enlighten you.  We just need to learn how to listen. 

Why wouldn’t you want to know in detail how other people feel or what others are thinking?  Your own opinions become more refined, more useful, more aligned to reality when they are challenged. There is power in giving consideration to things you’ve never before considered.

Then there is the diversity that I spent July meeting with team members and discussing.  Fortunately, inside H5H, we appear to be ahead of the American culture.

By sharing the Experience we have gained in business and in life: 

Contrary to the previous paragraph is the experience factor.  Too often, both in business and in culture, we want to throw out the tried and tested.  We want to “try” new ideas.  Well, let’s be honest, there’s a time and place for that but King Solomon’s wisdom still exists and provides great counsel (Ecclesiastes 1:9).  History teaches us great lessons.  It will fail to do that if we try to destroy or rewrite it.  That’s why you’ve heard us say “document your journey.”.  It’s so you will remember and so you can provide the roadmap for those that will come after us. 

If we truly want to elevate our game, if we truly want to be better than the competition, if we truly want to make our team members and guests feel safe during this pandemic, if we truly want to see our career grow, if we truly want to change our communities, our state or our nation….we must start with a desire to improve the person we see in the mirror.  Elevation starts with you. 

“Over the years I have found myself far more impressed with character than charisma, with persistence than power, and with faithfulness than fame.  I have found that maybe the greatest ability of all is dependability.” ~ General April Vogel, H5H Awards, March 2020

That’s it!  That’s how we ELEVATE

  • Character. Persistence. Faithfulness. Dependability
  • Setting high Expectations & living by Example.  Educating & Encouraging others.  Embracing diversity.  Sharing Experiences.