The Daily Rail: Three recent stories that show that leadership matters

July 25, 2016

Today's Special

Make your email subject lines under 8 words [Hack #061]

We live in a 140 character world, but for email you only really get eight words to capture your guests' attention. Learn more in this restaurant marketing tip.


The clear theme of the Daily Rail today is leadership and we thought a few great quotes would lead you to the same conclusion we have achieved — what you do matters and so does how you do it.

"The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things." --Ronald Reagan

"Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right thing." --Peter F. Drucker

"A leader is best when people barely know he exists. When his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves." --Lao Tzu


Why it’s important to you: These Olympics are doomed, but they also prove that management matters.

On Sunday the Australia Olympic Committee (AOC) announced their athletes would not be moving into the Olympic village accommodations. AOC officials visited the Olympic village over the weekend and did some tests to determine if the facilities could handle the arrival of thousands of athletes. What they found was horrifying. It started with pipes leaking through walls. They stress tested the plumbing by simultaneously flushing toilets and running water. They also smelled gas in many rooms.

The Aussies are staying in local hotels and won’t move into the Olympic-provided apartments unless the issues are corrected. Since the games begin a week from Friday there is little hope the Rio Olympics Committee can affect the changes necessary. It’s a shame, but it’s also not a surprise. These Olympics have been doomed from the start as our Quiz from last week demonstrated. It all comes down to good operations management and that is something all of you understand. It takes a coordinated effort for you to deliver your best service, food and experience, and it’s clear that Rio just isn’t up to the task.


Why it’s important to you: Trust, fairness, integrity all matter in leadership.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz

The tumult of this presidential election cycle finally caught up with Debbie Wasserman Schultz (DWS) and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) as she was forced to resign her post as chairperson yesterday. Her ouster reads like a Robert Ludlum (think Jason Bourne) novel filled with intrigue, espionage, politicking and betrayal. It happened after thousands of internal emails were released by WIkileaks demonstrating that Bernie Sanders campaign was right to accuse the DNC of being “for” Hillary Clinton. 

This leak is also a further indictment of DWS’s total lack of competency and leadership. During the previous year, the DNC demonstrated they had serious cybersecurity issues when they accidentally exposed Hillary Clinton’s donor list to the Sanders campaign. Then the hack that obtained these damning emails happened…unsurprisingly. There have been reports that the hackers were directed by Russian intelligence agencies and that Putin himself is attempting to influence the US elections.

That speculation aside, DWS has failed utterly in managing the security of her organization’s data assets, insuring that her staff be neutral in the primary electoral process. She has become a lightning rod of criticism for the organization she is charged with leading. As people who lead every day, you know that what you do matters. While the stakes may be different, they are no less serious. Your team counts on you to be fair, prepared and professional and if you don’t they won’t follow you. This seems to be a lesson that escaped Ms. Wasserman Schultz and now no one will be following her either.


Why it’s important to you: No one understands the new demographic better than restaurant operators.

When Kentucky State Senator Ralph Alvarado addressed the Republican National Committee in Spanish, it was considered a breakthrough moment. However, when Democratic Vice-Presidential candidate Tim Kaine did the same, it caused CNN commentator Scottie Nell Hughes to say, “What Mr. Trump did, he spoke in a language all Americans can understand ― that is English.” Hughes continued to praise the Republican presidential nominee. “I didn’t have to get a translator for anything that was going on at the [Republican National Convention] this week,” she continued. While there are many Americans that agree with Hughes’s observations, it’s hard to deny the changing demographic of our country and anyone that has worked in a restaurant is acutely aware of those changes.

How much kitchen Spanish have you acquired over your time as a restaurant operator? If you think of your staff as your constituents, you do whatever it takes to communicate with them in a way that they will respond to favorably. It doesn’t mean you’re giving control to your Spanish-speaking employees, just demonstrating your respect for their work and making an effort to meet them where they stand. Isn’t that the textbook definition of what politicians do? That’s not to say you are a politician if you accommodate your Hispanic employees; you’re just a good leader.