2014 Summer Kick-Off
At the heart of any successful organization is a strong commitment to training, opportunities for teams to network and learn from each other, and a true passion for their mission. During this year’s Taher Kick-Off Week, we welcomed 200+ Food Service Directors, Chefs, Chef Managers, and Corporate Support Staff to Minneapolis, MN and immersed them into all three of these areas.
Staying true to our commitment to provide our clients and customers with fresh, Chef-driven meals, while embracing the incredible changes that have taken place in our industry, we introduced our 2014 Mission: “Winning Results in a Changing Marketplace.”
As part of our Kick-Off we enjoyed hands-on training, Keynote Speaker Haydn Shaw, and of course, a Chef Competition!
Bruce’s love for this country, the company, and his employees showed true as he brought us all together and started the seminar with his heartfelt words. He shared his story about immigrating here fifty years ago with the hope and a dream that a young man could move to this country without many resources and be able to start their own business. He reminded us all that, “Taher is not just another company, it’s a family.” It has a name and people who stand behind it. That “brand” stands for honesty, integrity, and giving the customer the best value one can provide in this marketplace. Bruce truly makes everyone feel proud to be a part of this organization!
Keynote speaker Haydn Shaw gave an awesome presentation on “How To Get Four Generations Working Together” that still has everyone talking! Who knew the meaning of something as simple as flip-flops (or thongs, depending on your generation) could be so confusing? We all sat engaged as he taught us to “Seek to Understand” each other’s perspectives and communication styles.
Our first “Sandbox Battle” featured four chefs, each bringing their best game to create the winning dish. Contestants were given sixty minutes and a mystery basket filled with bone marrow, Spam, tomatillos, and preserved duck egg. Our judges sampled each of the Chef’s creations, and in the end had the difficult task of choosing the winning dish. The champion was a “Summer Ragu with Chicken Basted in Bone Marrow & Rosemary!” (Note, this is an amateur interpretation of one of the more complex dishes I’ve ever seen.)
Training was where rubber hit the road. Each division broke out to accomplish their respective agendas and arm their teams with the necessary tools to “Win In Today’s Market.” Teams all worked together, interacted in small groups, and continued their conversations into the hallways, bringing maximum value for our customers.
By the end, our team left Minneapolis feeling invigorated and ready to tackle the coming year freshly armed with new tools, a stronger network of colleagues, and a true sense of this family brand!