I was talking to a friend of mine who is the executive chef and a local restaurant and he was saying that there are times he wished we all got a “fast forward”. He was specifically talking about his desire to speed through a crazy dinner rush and arrive at the end, exhausted and beat-up, but done.
For those of you who have never had the privilege of working in the hospitality, industry a quick education. Restaurants are orderly systems with defined roles and process. Until a horde of diners descend upon you in a short period of time all demanding your absolute best simultaneously. In the biz this is known as being, “in the weeds”. In this city, where restaurant traffic is often driven by plays or concerts with everyone wanting to eat before the show, I call this, “the fastest 100 minutes in restauranting.” While my logical mind says a fast forward would be great my romantic mind says that then you would miss the most exciting part of the game. [if you really want to see what its like in a restaurant watch this]
Start-ups and restaurants have a lot in common; hard to please customers, impossible deadlines, team play, experimentation and most of all hustle. And nothing brings it all out more than a good flash mob. One minute you are sitting with your team making plans, reviewing process and preparing. The next is an all out sh*t show with people screaming, running and doing everything in their power to make customers happy. It is this time that shows teams and individuals what they are capable of and creates ties that bind. When it goes well and you are in the zone it is as if “the basket is 3-feet wide.” When it doesn’t, you try and remember the saying about what doesn’t kill you making you stronger. The interesting part is that if you are an addict, like I am, both leave you wanting to go again.
As my team races toward the launch of our product, I know that these are times I will look back through a pair of rose colored glasses. These are the stories I and my team will talk about. Like the college all-nighters (you never tell the story of the paper you finished early) these are memory making days. I didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur and there are days when if I could kick this habit and get a “real job” I would. But I know I would be back. So I don’t think I would want a fast forward button (a rewind one would be nice).
Besides, thanks to our team, the basket is looking pretty big right now. JFDI