Is your chef part of the team?

“Food is everything we are. It’s an extension of nationalist feeling, ethnic feeling, personal history, province, region, tribe, and grandma. It’s inseparable from those from the get-go.” ~ Anthony Bourdain

The late celebrity chef’s chef Anthony Bourdain loved his work. He loved people, and he loved food and all the socializing around food; enough to travel the world to learn what we already know in the food serving end of long term care and retirement communities. Food is an individual love and the social aspect of it, go hand in hand like a pair of twins. Knowing this and knowing these communities are now in quarantine makes the food serving team bring joy to the residents. They can spend a few minutes to socialize while bringing good food. The power of enlightening the day of a resident is in the food serving team’s hands, including those working across departments.

It is vitally important that your chef is onboard, providing foods that show the residents are in his heart and mind. A great chef is a great planner. Along with planning an efficient kitchen, he knows what meals his diners are looking forward to, and they come from him. Now is a time for specialties to soothe the concerned resident. Food can appease and comfort. Since their food served comes from a team effort, the servers can pick up hints from these older people they serve, look for information about meals that created memories and meals that will bring pleasure in this stressful time.

Kind Dining® training sessions encourage teamwork. Working together by understanding and respecting your coworkers’ responsibilities and your own makes for a smoother transition of foods served at mealtimes. A skilled chef is aware that the kitchen is a workshop full of open fires, sharp tools, and people racing in and out to pick up and deliver hot meals. Top chefs educate themselves with ethnic cuisines of other cultures and methods of preparation trends. Passing along the wishes of diners allows the chef to add personal menus to his continuously expanding knowledge and innovations of different dishes and plate them.  The chef knows more than how to prepare food and be in touch with the diners the recipes are created for. Anthony Bordain knew it was about the people he met, the friendships formed, memories kept, and the foods that brought them all together.

Our B Kind® Tip: Confidence in your food serving team is an early step to loving what you do!

About Cindy Heilman

Cindy is the founder and owner of Kind Dining®, which she began in 2006. She’s traveled across the country and Canada working with and training senior living communities that want to create an exceptional dining experience for their residents and staff. In addition, she certifies select professionals in her Kind Dining® philosophy and provides tools, now in an eLearning format, that make learning stick and help people put insights into action. As a result of her work, clients often share their staff has a new sense of purpose, get along better and keep their focus and energy on what matters most. In fact, she wrote a book, Hospitality for Boomers on how to attract residents and keep good team members. In her free time, she enjoys walking Oregon trails and cheering on her favorite soccer teams, the Portland Thorns and Timbers.

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