Unemployment is way down and hiring is way up across just about all industries. This is definitely true in the leisure and hospitality industry. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this industry added 368,000 new jobs between November 2014 and November 2015.
In a market this hot, recruitment-as-usual will not work to bring “A” players to your team. Not only do you need to track them down, but once you find them, you also need to court them. If effect, you should apply the same approach to recruitment that you do to sales and marketing: identify your targets, craft a compelling value proposition and then be persistent in connecting with them.

My father, Herman Weber, began his career in the hospitality industry in the 1930s as a dishwasher at a local restaurant. He had planned to use the money he saved to buy a car, but instead leased a bankrupt diner that had come onto the market. At only 25 years old, Weber was in business for himself.
More than 75 years later, my father’s legacy lives on at Weber’s Restaurant and Hotel in Ann Arbor, Mich., the establishment my parents founded in 1937. It was first an eatery before a hotel, which was recently ranked among the best hotels in the country by CollegeRank.net and the world by Expedia.com. Today, I serve as president, and two of my sons, Michael and Brian Weber, are vice presidents of the hotel and restaurant, respectively.

At Crosswinds Grille in The Lakehouse Inn & Winery, excelling at farm-to-table cuisine and working with local producers play important parts in both the inn and restaurant’s success. Chef Nate Fagnilli’s passion for the local food movement is evident; so much so that you will often find him on weekly calls with neighboring livestock companies discussing grass-fed meat or involved in a 6 a.m. text conversation with a farmer.
His menu is filled with items purchased from area farmers and cheese makers, so it changes on a regular basis. It is also based entirely on sources from the region, from the meat right down to the cocktails (created with Ohio-made ingredients) and the house-produced wine.

Names can mean everything in food labeling. The Code of Federal Regulations devotes 300 pages to naming conventions and standards of identity for foods, but sometimes adjectives mean even more.
Marketers and the food companies they represent for years have been using the terms “organic,” “non-GMO” or “natural” to distinguish their products in a field crowded with competitors. Market research supports them or perhaps reflects their efforts. The USDA’s Economic Research Service 2014 reports that organic goods, for example, enjoy double-digit growth year-over-year; that they are sold in over 20,000 natural food stores; and that almost 75 percent of conventional grocery stores now offer them.
Nielsen’s “Healthy Eating Trends Around the World” published in January 2015 found that sales of products with “natural” or “organic” claims rose from 24 percent in 2012 to 28 percent in 2014 and the International Food Information Council Foundation’s consumer research showed that in 2015, more Americans reported feeling concerned about chemicals in their food (36%) than pathogenic bacteria (34%).

I stopped by a roadside flea market in search of an antique typewriter. “Your license plate is falling off,” the owner said with a smile as I was getting out of my car. I noticed the screw on the side of the plate was about to separate. Handing me a Phillips screwdriver from his pile of used tools, he said, “Tighten that bad boy back up again!” When I returned his screwdriver, he waved me away. “Just keep it, neighbor; I got plenty of them.” I thought, “How long has it been since a merchant I had never seen referred to me as a neighbor?”
Our fast-paced, get-it-on-the-Internet society has stripped out too much of the neighbor-serving-neighbor service experience. Mechanized trumps personalized. But when we receive a neighborly experience, it makes us feel special and gives us a nostalgic sense of being home.

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