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Culinary Career: Post-COVID Pivot

People got to eat. It's the mantra, the tag line, the code culinary professionals live by. It was the assurance of perpetual employment or at least employability. Here we are. Hit the hardest. The most vulnerable. The least considered. So, what does the future hold is the million-dollar question. No one really knows. It's all speculation. So what does one do? How should culinary professionals prepare for the evolving food industry landscape? It's time to pivot. Pivoting in basketball is being grounded in a foot position while using the other foot to change position to gain perspective or openness to make your move. It's also a term recently applied in business planning, operations and can be applied to career planning. This concept is important for culinary professionals impacted by the pandemic. Here is what pivoting looks like for culinary professionals. The foundation is knowing your transferable skills. Take an inventory of your skills. Write it down on paper as if you are making a pre-list for tomorrow's service. This includes hard skills like meat & seafood fabrication, grilling, etc. And soft skills like communication, teamwork, collaboration, and time-management. The next step in the process is environmental scanning. Look up and around your for the existing opportunities related to feeding people. Where are there long lines of people purchasing or receiving food? Consider your skills and how you might be able to improve the process. Consider starting a home-based catering business that sells meals to people in less time. Environmental scanning includes looking beyond the restaurant segment of the food industry and looking for employment opportunities in food manufacturing, recipe development, and contract foodservice companies. Lastly, pivoting is about maintaining momentum. You might be blocked right now. You might be in a corner. Pivoting is a type of momentum that keeps you going, keeps you looking for opportunities, keeps you surviving. For more articles, coaching and advice visit my website www.duankbrown.com for more.


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