by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Consultant Versus Coach

Consultant vs. Coach: Similarities and Differences

by Jennifer Radkey

Double arrow, street ends sign

At some point in your journey as a business owner it’s inevitable that you’ll come up against a challenge that you struggle to overcome on your own; you may need to reach out for advice or guidance.

There are countless reasons why you may seek an expert’s help. Perhaps you’ve come up against a roadblock trying to reach a goal. Maybe you’re unexpectedly forced into a major transition. You may decide you’re ready to take your business to the next level but are unsure how to proceed.

The situation you find yourself in could be as big as the opening of a new restaurant or bar, or as vague as a general sense of something not being “right.”

Whatever the reason may be, you’ve exhausted your own pool of resources and are ready to seek outside help. So, who do you turn to?

Most likely you’ll be looking to hire either a consultant or a coach. Of course, this begs the question: Which do you choose?

I’m both the vice president of KRG Hospitality and a certified life coach. My husband Doug Radkey is the president of KRG Hospitality and our agency’s lead consultant. “Do I need a consultant or coach” is a question people ask of us quite often.

The answer is simple once you understand the similarities and differences between the two.


Coaches and consultants are both third parties who provide an outsider’s clarity while maintaining an unbiased point of view.

They’re both knowledgeable and have their own unique approaches and expertise. Coaches and consultants come with the intention of helping you achieve your goals. While the majority of coaching and consulting is done one-on-one, team consulting and coaching are also options.

The differences between coaching and consulting can be found in the approaches used to help you achieve your goals.


The easiest way to learn the differences between a coach and a consultant is to take a closer look at how each one approaches how they help you. It’s an understanding of these differences that provide the clarity needed for you to choose the best solution.


Consultants are industry-specific experts. When presented with a challenge you want to overcome or a goal you want to achieve, a consultant finds the solution using their knowledge and experience. They also diagnose any problems that are evident in your business and then make recommendations to correct them.

A consultant is someone you can turn to for technical and professional advice.

Once the consultant has determined the root of the problem or determined the best path forward to achieve your goal, the answers will be provided to you. And along with the answers come the steps necessary to solve the problem or reach the goal. You’ll be given a clear, detailed plan.

Consultants listen carefully to what’s going on. They ask specific questions, watch how your team interacts with your guests, and study your steps of service. Additionally, consultants analyze data and conduct research, and then communicate their findings clearly with you. Again, consultants give you the tools you need to execute a plan—including processes and proven methods—to achieve success.

If you’re in need of specific industry advice and expertise, a consultant is who you need to hire.


Coaches are experts in placing the power in your hands to discover your own solutions and answers. You hire a coach to discover yourself, inspire confidence, explore possibilities, and find your own clarity. Entrepreneurs turn to coaches to help them transform into great leaders.

Through sincere and thoughtful inquiry, coaches will pull answers out of you that you didn’t know that you already had. They’ll also help you become aware of self-imposed limitations so you can overcome them. Rather than just giving you a plan, coaches help you develop your own strategies for uncovering your truth, and then help you understand how to move forward.

Coaches are sounding boards for discussing both personal and professional issues, providing a safe, judgment-free place for you to be heard. They’re interested in long-term results and the overall well-being of their client.

If you’re looking for overall growth and a better understanding of how you can reach your own goals and potential, a coach is who you need to hire.

Hiring a consultant or a coach is a positive step towards achieving both short-term and long-term goals. Knowing the difference between the two now empowers you to choose the best person to help you where you want to go.

Cheers to personal and professional growth!

Image: Robert Linder on Unsplash

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by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Do Super Bowl Ads Work on Consumers?

Do Super Bowl Ads Work on Consumers?

by David Klemt

Pepsi Zero Sugar bottle

One of the biggest Super Bowl ad winners is Pepsi Zero Sugar.

Brands spent hundreds of millions of dollars to advertise during Super Bowl LVII, but do their ads actually translate to demand for their products?

A week ago we shared our ten favorite beverage-focused Big Game ads. Along with those ads we shared some numbers.

One of those numbers was $7 million, the cost of a 30-second Super Bowl ad on Fox. Other numbers? $500 million and $700 million, the range of revenue it’s estimated that Fox generated this year from Super Bowl ads.

At this point, these ads and the Halftime Show have essentially become their own entities. Some people watch the Big Game for the ads, some for the show halfway through. It stands to reason that brands are well aware of this development. So, they try to create the most impactful ad possible in the hopes of generating consumer demand.

In other words, these brands aren’t spending all this money just so they’re commercial can be deemed cool. Sure, brands want that buzz. But they also want an ROI on the millions they spend.

The big question is, then, are they seeing a return? Well, it just so happens that behavioral insight platform Veylinx has a data-driven answer to that question.

In short, the answer is yes. Of course, it’s a nuanced yes. For example, it appears Gen Z doesn’t care much about Super Bowl ads, as you’ll see below. Also, non-advertisers in the same categories as Super Bowl advertisers appear to see a benefit from the ads.

You’ll learn more from the Veylinx press release below. It’s an interesting read with valuable data for restaurant, bar, and hotel operators.

NEW YORK, Feb. 22, 2023 — A new study from behavioral research company Veylinx determined whether or not Super Bowl commercials boost consumer demand for the products advertised. The results show that 2023 Super Bowl advertising fueled a 6.4% increase in demand among viewers.

The overall increase in consumer demand was driven by women, who accounted for a 21% increase in demand growth. The commercials had minimal impact on men, yielding just 1% demand growth for the brands tested. Gen Z viewers were largely unimpressed by the Super Bowl ads, with demand among 18 to 25 year olds actually shrinking by 1%.

2023 Veylinx impact of Super Bowl ads on consumers chart

“It’s not really a surprise to see that Super Bowl ads improve sales, but the short term bump alone may not be enough to justify the $7 million price tag,” said Veylinx founder and CEO Anouar El Haji. 

Using Veylinx’s proprietary methodology—which measures actual demand rather than intent—the study tested purchase behavior during the week before the Super Bowl and again the week after. The research focused on measuring the change in consumer demand for eight brands with Super Bowl ads: Michelob Ultra, Heineken 0.0%, Hellmann’s Mayo, Downy Unstopables, Crown Royal Whisky, Frito-Lay PopCorners, Pringles and Pepsi Zero Sugar. 

Super Bowl Advertising Winners Overall

Michelob Ultra – 19% increase in demand

Pepsi Zero Sugar – 18% increase in demand

Frito-Lay PopCorners – 12% increase in demand

Heineken 0.0% – 11% increase in demand

Super Bowl Advertising Winners Among Women

Pepsi Zero Sugar – 45% increase in demand

Michelob Ultra – 40% increase in demand

Heineken 0.0% – 40% increase in demand

Crown Royal Whisky – 26% increase in demand

Veylinx, top performing brands during 2023 Super Bowl

Halo Effect for Non-Advertisers

The biggest winners were arguably brands in the same product categories as Super Bowl advertisers. Non-advertisers in those categories appeared to benefit nearly as much as the advertisers: demand grew by 4.2% percent for the study’s control group of non-advertising competitors. Corona Extra, Kraft Mayo and Lay’s STAX were the greatest beneficiaries in a control group that also included Budweiser Zero, Arm & Hammer Clean Scentsations, Canadian Club Whisky, Popchips, and Coke Zero Sugar. Notably, every non-advertiser saw at least a slight increase in post-Super Bowl demand.

“The goal of our study was to look specifically at how consumer demand is affected by running a commercial during the Super Bowl,” El Haji said. “It’s possible that the non-advertisers deployed other marketing efforts to offset or take advantage of the Super Bowl advertising—or they simply benefited from increased exposure for their categories.” 

Additional Findings

Study participants also answered a series of follow-up questions about their preferences, perceptions and how they watched the Super Bowl. More than three-quarters watched at home through various platforms, the most popular being the live cable/satellite broadcast (38%), followed by YouTube TV (15%) and Hulu (10%). When asked why they watched, it’s no surprise that participants were all about the game (64%)—but the commercials were the next most popular reason for watching (39%), followed by halftime (35%), the social aspect (26%) and fear of missing out (13%). 

About the Research

Veylinx studied the behavior of 1,610 U.S. consumers pre- and post- Super Bowl LVII. Unlike typical surveys where consumers are simply asked about their purchase intent, Veylinx measures whether consumers will pay for a product through a real bidding process. Consumers reveal their true willingness to pay by placing sealed bids on products and then answering follow-up questions.

For more information about the study and the Veylinx methodology, visit

About Veylinx

Veylinx is the most realistic behavioral insights platform for confidently answering critical business questions during all stages of product innovation. To reliably predict demand, Veylinx captures insights through a Nobel Prize-winning approach in which consumers have real skin in the game. This is a major advance from traditional market research practices that rely on what consumers say they would hypothetically buy. Veylinx’s unique research methodology is trusted by the world’s largest and most innovative consumer goods companies.

Main article image: PepsiCo / Article body images: Veylinx

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by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

WCK On the Ground in Türkiye and Syria

WCK On the Ground in Türkiye and Syria

by David Klemt

Building in Barış, Türkiye, damaged in 2023 earthquake

A week after deadly, devastating earthquakes struck Türkiye and Syria, World Central Kitchen has served more than one million meals.

KRG Hospitality supports WCK and their mission, and has done so for years. In fact, donating to WCK is a core element of our KRG Cares program.

There’s a lot of bleakness and darkness dominating headlines. Negativity continues to infect social media and public discourse. All too often, people are focusing on one another’s differences, feeding the drive to divide rather than unite.

However, it doesn’t have to be this way. We don’t have to give into cynicism and pessimism. We don’t have to take the bait and allow ourselves to wallow in outrage.

Look at what Chef José Andrés, Patricia Andrés, and the WCK team accomplish as an example. When disaster strikes, WCK is there to provide support and relief. The WCK Relief Team mobilizes, WCK organizes and finds support partners, and those in need get hot meals.

On February 6, two earthquakes Türkiye and Syria. The first earthquake registered 7.8 Mw (Moment Magnitude Scale), while the second was 7.7 Mw. According to recent reports, the death toll has surpassed 42,000. Millions of people in both countries lost their homes.

Yesterday, a 6.4 Mw quake struck the Türkiye-Syria border. Reports claim another eight people died and hundreds more were injured.

Making the monumental task of providing relief even more challenging is the conflict in Syria. Still, WCK, Gift of the Givers, and 25 restaurant partners are providing meals in Türkiye and Syria. Meals for those in Syria are prepared in Türkiye and then delivered to a hospital.

The Spirit of Hospitality

I don’t want to come off as preachy in this article. However, I think there’s been a departure from hospitality that our industry needs to address.

It behooves us to remember the role that restaurants, bars, and hotels have played traditionally in their communities. Ours are places of welcome, of warmth, of support.

In other words, our businesses are places of hospitality. That word isn’t simply an industry or trade designation.

Restaurants, bars, and hotels around the world have long been the cartilage of their communities; they brought everyone together. In many cases, hospitality was the beating heart of a community, not just the connective tissue.

Two people with opposing word views were able to set aside their differences over a drink and a bite to eat. We need to get back to that element of hospitality. Neighborhood restaurants and bars, regardless of category, are sanctuaries. Each one is an oasis, and we need to remember that. We’re about inclusion, not exclusion.

The WCK is perhaps an extreme example of what our industry can do for others. That makes the organization no less exemplary and deserving of emulation.

If you’re able to do so, please consider supporting WCK.

Image: World Central Kitchen via Twitter

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by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Metallica Supports World Central Kitchen

Metallica Supports World Central Kitchen

by David Klemt

Metallica band member portraits

Metallica is supporting World Central Kitchen to #StandWithUkraine via donations made through their non-profit organization, All Within My Hands.

To start off AWMH’s annual Month of Giving, the band and their philanthropic organization awarded WCK a $100,000 grant. They then donated $500,000 to the humanitarian non-profit founded by Chef José Andrés and his wife Patricia.

However, Metallica and AWMH aren’t done there. The iconic metal band and their non-profit have committed to the goal of donating another $400,000 to WCK.

Additionally, Metallica and AWMH have unveiled the Month of Giving 2022 T-shirt.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Metallica (@metallica)

The shirt can be pre-ordered here (I placed my order last Monday). Proceeds will go to the WCK #ChefsForUkraine campaign. Artist Andrew Cremeans created the brand-new design and donated it to AWMH.

People interested in making a donation to AWMH that will benefit WCK but who don’t want the T-shirt can click here.

All Within My Hands

The All Within My Hands Foundation was founded in 2017. Metallica and the band’s management are the founding members.

James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett, and Robert Trujillo are members of AWMH’s board of directors. In addition, the organization’s advisory board has eight members:

  • Chris Anthony (Salesforce)
  • Howard Ellin (Skadden, Arps)
  • Brenda Goodman (BGood Marketing)
  • Bill Moore (WRVI Capital)
  • Doug Palladini (Vans)
  • Gregg Perloff (Another Planet Entertainment)
  • Michael Rapino (Live Nation)
  • Paula Wagner (Chestnut Ridge Productions)

AWMH’s mission focuses on three crucial pillars:

  • Workforce education with partner American Association of Community Colleges. The Metallica Scholars Initiative is now supported by 23 schools across the US. To date, $4.1 in grants have been awarded.
  • Fighting hunger in collaboration with partner Feeding America. Food banks are a heavy focus of Metallica and AWMH, with proceeds from tour ticket sales going to the fight against hunger.
  • Critical local services with their partner Direct Relief, which is active in all 50 states of America and more than 80 other countries.


World Central Kitchen mobilized incredibly quickly in response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine. Initially, WCK set up in Poland.

However, the the hunger-fighting organization has expanded operations to an additional six countries.

Further, WCK is now operating in over 30 cities located in Ukraine. As of this week, the non-profit is providing nearly 300,000 meals daily to those in need.

In staggering news, WCK has provided six million meals to the region in just over a month.

To donate to WCK directly, please click here.

Image: MasterClass

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Prepare for a Luxe Life Summer

Prepare for a Luxe Life Summer

by David Klemt

BMW M cars parked next to private airplane

When we think of restaurant and bar tech and platforms, we tend to think of POS and inventory solutions. But what about guest-facing services?

We’re all familiar with online ordering, reservation, and review platforms. What I’m talking about is guest-facing tech that focuses on the luxury lifestyle.

For those living the high-roller life, every convenience is at the tap of an icon, including private jets, helicopters, yachts, and luxury and exotic vehicles.

What does any of this have to do with hospitality? Anyone who serves or courts high-net-worth guests needs to understand how they live and what they expect. This is even more important as summer approaches, vaccine rates improve, and pandemic guidelines relax.

Additionally, there are partnerships and marketing opportunities for operators and luxury lifestyle platforms.


Flying private isn’t solely the domain of those who can afford to shell out several million dollars for the plane of their dreams.

The proliferation of the sharing economy means people can hop on a charter flight for a fraction of the cost.


Do you hate waiting in traffic, even if you’re not the one doing the driving? Wish you could just jump into the air and leapfrog a sea of cars keeping you from, say, an airport? With Blade, you can summon a helicopter and make your flight in minutes.


Formerly known as JetSuite X, JSX serves the western region of America and Texas. If the thought of flying commercial is unbearable at the moment, JSX makes it easy to jump onto a 30-seat set via private terminals for non-stop flights.


We’ve all been there: We want our own private jet but it’s just slightly out of reach at the moment (by many millions of dollars). NetJet gives people fractional ownership of private jets and provides top-notch, personal service. The company’s fleet includes everything from six-passenger Embraer Phenom 300 jets to the high-speed, long-range 14-passenger Bombardier Global 7500.

Wheels Up

This company offers three levels of membership: Connect, Core and Business. Wheels Up is more than a transportation app—they’re a lifestyle brand. The company offers membership perks such as exclusive events and concierge services, which should be of particular interest to hospitality operators.


There are a couple of tropes that come along with boat ownership. One is that the two happiest days for a boat owner are the day they take possession and the day they get rid of it.

And then there’s the classic “definition” of a boat: “A hole in the water into which one throws money.”

However, much like one can dial up a helicopter or grab a seat on a Gulfstream, people can now charter a yacht for a fraction of boat ownership. Choose the yacht that meets your yachtin’ needs, board it, and crank the yacht rock.


Any boat that someone uses for cruising, leisure, pleasure or racing is a yacht. So, the yacht life isn’t exclusively for ocean-going vessels. Float lets customers “rent the lake life,” connecting boat owners with people who want to rent boats on lakes. One of the best parts of Float is that it doesn’t, as far as we can tell, cost thousands of dollars per day to rent a boat via the platform.


This is a huge platform. We found more than 12,100 boats available in America, more than 4,400 in Australia, and well over 28,000 in Europe on GetMyBoat. Given the size of the platform, there’s a large swing when it comes to rental costs, which makes sense. For instance, there was a 21-inch Sea Hunt Ultra 210 for $44/hour (four-hour minimum) in Virginia and a 40-foot VanDutch Ultra Luxury Yacht for $4,000 for eight hours.


Serving an array of locations with a rather impressive portfolio of boats, YachtLife offers three membership levels catering to various needs. Beyond living the yacht life, the company provides perks and specials from their partners. This platform should be of particular interest to our Florida and Eastern Caribbean clients.

Four Wheels

So, someone grabs a helicopter to a private hangar, looking forward to lounging on the their rental yacht.

Sure, they could take a limo to the marina, or they could use the car service their plane or boat membership offers.

But they could also decide to drive themselves. Obviously, not just any car rental will do.


There are various Porsches and Mercedes listings on Turo that cost well under $200 a day. But for those looking for something exotic, a Lamborghini Huracan is around $1,000 per day, and an Aventador is around $1,400. You can’t show up to the marina behind the wheel of just anything, right?

Image: Jakob Rosen on Unsplash

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Let’s Talk About Bitcoin

Let’s Talk About Bitcoin

by David Klemt

A Bitcoin on top of a $100 bill

Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general are no strangers to media attention, but it seems like the coverage is increasing.

Of course, it helps when people who are excellent at garnering attention talk about it. Consider the explosion in news stories and online conversations about cryptocurrencies when Elon Musk tweeted about Dogecoin.

Then there’s the mystery factor. Many people don’t understand Bitcoin, Ethereum or other forms of cryptocurrency. The word itself—”crypto”—lends to the enigmatic air of this form of currency.

As a business owner, you should at least have a cursory understanding of cryptocurrency. After all, some people may try to pay you with it and you should at least consider meeting these guests where they are.

Before we proceed: I’m not a cryptocurrency or financial expert. I’m sharing information I’ve come across in my research over the years. Don’t make any financial or business decisions solely based upon what you read here—learn more for yourself and consult with experts before making investment decisions.

Crypto is Relevant to Our Industry

I’ve written about cryptocurrency—Bitcoin in particular—in the past. In one article, I wrote about a “nightclub” within a nightclub in Las Vegas devoted to cryptocurrency.

The club, MORE, had its own “coin” (MORE Coin), accepted other cryptocurrencies, and tailored its experience to crypto fanatics. It has become more of a members’ club, offering access to and preferential treatment at an array of venues, along with other perks. The club’s coin is purchased via Bittrex, a popular exchange platform

There are also hotels in Las Vegas (and other cities, of course) that accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin for rooms. Bitcoin ATMs scattered throughout Vegas allow people to access their wallets and convert crypto to cash.

Paying with crypto may become more commonplace than we think, sooner than we think.

Crypto Basics

Let’s address the term “cryptocurrency.” In this case, “crypto” is a reference to the encryption technology that protects a cryptocurrency network.

Bitcoin and other digital tokens, such as Ethereum and Dogecoin, are decentralized currencies. That is, there’s no main server, no government, no bank that controls or owns the network.

A digital token is incredibly difficult—if not impossible—to counterfeit or “double-spend.” This is due to sophisticated encryption technology and the blockchain.

The blockchain is a peer-to-peer distributed ledger technology that makes it incredibly difficult (again, if not impossible) to take over a crypto network. Every transaction is public knowledge; open to inspection; duplicated and distributed throughout an entire network; and  unalterable.

It’s that last point that made Bitcoin viable. Unlike attempts in the past to create digital currencies, the blockchain makes crypto trustworthy in that someone can’t just make up a new currency, wait for people to buy in, and then take it all for themselves.

Bitcoin has become synonymous with cryptocurrency. It’s the first viable digital token as we know it, the most popular, and at the moment, the most valuable.

Interestingly, it’s widely accepted that Ethereum is the second-most popular digital token but the most-utilized blockchain.

Finally, Bitcoin is finite. There are exactly 21 million Bitcoins—that’s it. Once they’re all mined, no more will be made.

Beyond the Basics

Fewer than 2.4 million Bitcoins remain to be mined. Currently, one Bitcoin is worth about $58,000.

A person uses a digital “wallet” to send and receive Bitcoin. Some people store their unique wallet on their computer; a separate and dedicated hard drive; a thumb drive; or a “cold” wallet, a device that’s not connected to the Internet to protect it from hackers.

If a person loses their wallet or password, they lose their Bitcoin(s).  There’s no way yet to know how many of the 21 million Bitcoins have been lost.

Bitcoin is a software system. Therefore, it can be copied. That’s the reason crypto beyond Bitcoin—such as the aforementioned Ethereum and Elon Musk-promoted Dogecoin—exists.

One of the biggest questions people have about bitcoin is, “Is this a scam?” Search online and you’ll get a mix of results.

There are high-profile people like Jack Dorsey and Elon Musk who are apparently heavily invested in crypto. There are critics calling the whole thing a scam and fraud. Then there are some former critics, like Jordan “The Wolf of Wall Street” Belfort, who were highly critical and suspicious of crypto but have changed their tunes.

Support from hotels, restaurant chains, financial institutions and other legitimate businesses seems to answer the scam question. However, operators must proceed with caution, as they would for any change in their business or investment.

Accepting Bitcoin Payments

Businesses that decide to accept Bitcoin and/or other digital tokens will need a POS app or platform to do so.

Starbucks is reportedly using Bakkt to accept Bitcoin.

Other options include BitPay Checkout, Bitcoin Cash Register, Anypay, and Paytomat.

Some solutions create a QR code the guest scans with their phone to complete a transaction. Others convert digital tokens to cash to accept payment.

It’s important to note that the IRS treats cryptos differently than US dollars. Before choosing to accept cryptocurrencies as payment, consult with your tax professional and accountant to ensure you don’t run afoul of any laws.

Canadian operators should note that while crypto is legal in the country. However, only the Canadian considered official legal tender in Canada. Again, this is why it’s so important to consult relevant experts before proceeding with crypto in your business.


The information provided in this post does not constitute investment advice, financial advice, trading advice, or any other sort of advice. Neither the author nor KRG Hospitality recommend that any cryptocurrency should be bought, sold, or held by you. Conduct your own due diligence and consult your financial advisor before making any investment decisions.

Image: Bermix Studio on Unsplash 

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Why Hospitality Pros Need LinkedIn

Why Hospitality Pros Need LinkedIn

by David Klemt

LinkedIn logo with blue background

Contrary to popular opinion, LinkedIn isn’t just for serious and stuffy executives and “corporate” types.

In our view, all hospitality professionals should be building networks on the platform. Nobody in this industry is “just” a restaurant or bar worker—everyone is skilled.

When it comes to hospitality, anyone passionate about their role and interested in moving up is a professional.

Foodservice Jobs are Real Jobs

Just about everybody who works in a restaurant, bar, nightclub, lounge or brewpub faces this disrespectful question:

“When are you going to get a real job?”

One-third of Americans get their start in the workforce with jobs in foodservice.  In America, nearly half of adults will work in the industry at some point.

The first job for roughly one-quarter of Canadians is in foodservice.

Some people work in the industry to pay their way towards a degree. Some work in restaurants or bars while they hunt for jobs in their chosen industry. In some cases, people realize hospitality is their calling and they remain in the industry.

The point is, jobs in hospitality are real, skilled jobs. In other words, this is a real job.

Transferrable Skills & Opportunity

The skills hospitality professionals learn are valuable to more than just employers within the industry.

Leadership, teamwork, customer service, conflict resolution, crisis management, sales, marketing… These are just a handful of the skills companies in other sectors seek out and find valuable.

Further, a LinkedIn profile is valuable even if one isn’t looking to change jobs. Just filling one out effectively speaks to another important, transferrable skill: attention to detail. The same goes for building a resume that illustrates an understanding of transferrable skills.

Also, hospitality is, by its nature, a connected and engaging industry. It only makes sense, therefore, that hospitality professionals in all roles should have LinkedIn profiles to connect with one another and people in other industries.

One never knows where the next opportunity will come from.

Stay Informed

Generally speaking, Instagram is great for sharing memes and photos. Twitter…well, Twitter is often described as a chaotic dumpster fire.

Facebook has groups and there are people who present a professional image on the platform. However, LinkedIn is laser-focused on bringing professionals across several industries together.

Because of their approach, LinkedIn helps facilitate conversations about topics related to a vast array of sectors. People who take their careers seriously—whatever they may be—will likely find value in a platform not dominated by photos, memes, and users seeking nothing more than clout.

It’s common for LinkedIn users to share professional advice, company and career wins, and reports loaded with industry data.

Let’s Link

Connect with Doug Radkey, David Klemt and KRG Hospitality on LinkedIn today!

Image: Alexander Shatov on Unsplash

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Buy a Shirt. Fight Cancer.

Buy a Shirt. Fight Cancer.

by David Klemt

It’s the giving season and the hospitality industry is one that takes care of its own.

We all have the opportunity to help an industry veteran and also support an incredible cause.

In July of this year, Chris Patino was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer. One night he went to bed feeling fine and the next morning he was unable to get out of bed.

Patino is an industry advocate who has focused on elevating the art and craft of bartending, brand education, and executing incredible events. He’s a partner in the award-winning Raised by Wolves, founder of the strategic marketing agency Simple Serve, and a Bartender’s Weekend organizer.

Now, Patino has launched This T-Shirt Fights Cancer. The proceeds of each This T-Shirt Fights Cancer tee, designed by Dave Stolte, based on a design by Woodrow Guthrie, and originally sketched on the back of a napkin—so fitting for this industry—go to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PANCAN).

Like Patino, PANCAN is dedicated to building community, sharing information, and advocacy. The organization fights to improve the lives of those living with pancreatic cancer through advancements in research.

As we near the end of the year, please consider joining the fight against cancer and purchasing a This T-Shirt Fights Cancer tee. To quote Patino on his campaign page, “And as always, f*ck cancer.”

Image: This T-Shirt Fights Cancer

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

Can Vending Machines Help Restaurants and Farmers Fight Food Waste and Generate Revenue?

Can Vending Machines Help Restaurants and Farmers Fight Food Waste and Generate Revenue?

by David Klemt

French farmers have found an innovative way to fight food waste, generate much-needed revenue, and provide fresh produce to the public: vending machines.

Last week, Barron’s, a publication dedicated to financial and investment news coverage, published an article about farmers in France finding more success selling produce via vending machines than their own farm stores.

All manner of items can be loaded into vending machines—fruits, vegetables, eggs and dairy products, for example—and famers are able to choose how many lockers their setups will include. For instance, one farmer invested in a 60-locker vending machine for €30,000, while another placed a machine with 88 lockers close to her farm.

Selling via vending machine was lauded by Barron’s as respectful of health and safety regulations since farmers and consumers aren’t interacting with one another directly.

This development begs the question: Would selling produce directly to consumers through vending machines prove viable in the United States and Canada?

The havoc afflicting the restaurant business doesn’t affect only the owners, operators and employees—it’s a shockwave ripping through other industries, such as farming and agriculture. For months, news coverage has included reports of farmers sharing stories of showing up to restaurants to deliver food only to find them closed, leaving farmers with surpluses of food destined to go to waste.

One option to make this work could include restaurant operators and local farmers partnering to set up vending machines (locker type, not the standard snack versions). This would help reduce the initial buy-in and both operators and farmers would have access: restaurants would use them for contactless meal and meal kit pickup, and farmers could accept direct-to-consumer orders of fresh produce fulfilled through the lockers.

In fact, creative operators may be able to build meal kits that combine their menu items with ingredients sourced from local farmers.

The partnership concept may prove more viable for connectivity reasons as well. In France, one major supplier of vending machines, according to Barron’s, indicated the machines required a reliable 4G connection, in part because they recommend only accepting credit card and online payments to reduce vandalism. Placing vending machines on-site should provide more stable connections and steadier consumer traffic.

Politicians continue to drag their feet and posture in regards to Covid-19 relief. It has been clear for months that the public and businesses without lobbying power are being left to fend for themselves. A partnership between restaurants and farmers could prove mutually beneficial for the survival of the restaurant, farming and agriculture industries.

When contacting their representatives to demand they help we the people and the restaurant industry, it could be wise to remind them that relief for restaurants is also relief for farmers, saving millions of jobs and thousands of farms at risk of permanent loss, along with avoiding literal tons of needless food waste.

Image: Alex Motoc on Unsplash

by David Klemt David Klemt No Comments

LCBO and SkipTheDishes Hit Pause on Partnership After Public Lashing

LCBO and SkipTheDishes Hit Pause on Partnership After Public Lashing

by David Klemt

The Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) faced outrage over the weekend, ultimately deciding to “pause” a controversial partnership after receiving a public lashing.

In case you missed it, the LCBO and SkipTheDishes announced on December 4 that they had partnered to offer home deliveries of beer, wine and spirits in Toronto. For those who are unfamiliar, SkipTheDishes is a food delivery service similiar to Grubhub that serves Canada. In fact, SkipTheDishes pulled out of the United States in 2020 and their services were handed over to Grubhub.

Just two days after the partnership was made public, it was announced by the LCBO that, due to “direction from the Ontario Government,” the deal had been suspended.

Restaurants and bars in Ontario have been allowed to offer alcohol for delivery and takeout since March via an emergency order due to the Covid-19 pandemic, shutdowns, and utter carnage that has befallen the industry. Many would like for the emergency order to be made permanent.

To understand the outrage, one must realize that restaurants and bars in Ontario have been operating under forced lockdowns. Premier Doug Ford announced the lockdown—which affected Toronto and Peel Region—on November 20. It went into effect a minute past midnight on November 23. No end date accompanied the mandate.

When the LCBO—which is able to make purchases and sales of beverage alcohol at lower wholesale prices than restaurant and bar owners and operators—arranged the deal with SkipTheDishes, those who operate in Toronto and Peel interpreted the move as undercutting their struggling businesses. Alcohol delivery and takeout is one of the only ways operators in those areas can generate any revenue and give themselves a fighting chance to keep from closing their doors permanently.

In terms of optics, the situation did anything but paint the LCBO and SkipTheDishes in a positive light. The LCBO, for those outside Canada, is what’s known as a Crown Corporation. That is, it’s entirely owned by the Sovereign of Canada—a state-owned enterprise. One could argue that it appeared the government in Ontario hobbled the LCBO’s competition—restaurants and bars—in an effort to boost their revenue and profits.

A tweet by operator and author Jen Agg regarding the timing of the partnership read, in part, “It is timed to UNDERCUT restaurants that are already bleeding out. It is timed to benefit companies that DONT NEED ANY HELP! It is timed to devastate restaurants and they damn well knew all of this.” (Emphasis Jen Agg’s.)

While the “pause” of the LCBO-SkipTheDishes partnership is a victory of sorts, countless operators—and likely customers and other small business supporters—would like to see this arrangement permanently dissolved. Several tweets have mentioned that the LCBO has increased profits during the pandemic, while others have pointed out that the Crown Corporation could help restaurants and bars by offering them wholesale pricing to reduce costs.

For now, operators in Ontario will need to keep their eyes and ears open, remaining vigilant should the LCBO and SkipTheDishes press play on their deal again.

Photo by Talha Atif on Unsplash