How Vulnerable is your Catering?
Brene Brown, anybody? Once considered a weakness, the role of vulnerability is rapidly changing in the workplace and in the world. Courtesy of the research of Brene Brown, vulnerability is being re-assessed as an amazing source of strength, authenticity and connectivity. What does this mean, and how can Brene’s lessons be leveraged to improve the corporate catering experience? Read on to learn more!
The Power of Vulnerability
Have you taken the time to familiarise yourself with Brene Brown’s TED talk The Power of Vulnerability? In a nutshell, by being courageous enough to be more vulnerable (taking more emotional risks) we can be more authentic and connect better with each other. This will lead to improved results. Since organising events and functions can be a stressful, complicated and demanding job, let’s see how Brene’s insights can help make things easier!
“What we know matters but who we are matters more.”
Nice one, Brene! Being right all the time is pretty stressful. As humans we all make mistakes. Vulnerability is about acknowledging these mistakes and creating an authentic interaction. Owning our failures as well as our triumphs has the capacity to improve relationships, assuming a healthy and non-toxic operating environment. As you navigate the rollercoaster of challenges associated with any corporate catering gig, express who you are and take ownership with these tips:
a) Excellent Communication – establish great comms and use them
b) Plan for contingencies – try to have a plan B for major aspects of your event
c) Empower your team by sharing responsibility
“Connection is why we’re here; it is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.”
A well-organised social function is a fabulous opportunity to create connection. What better way for people to meet and hang out than around the company of some delicious food and beverages? As long as humans have lived, the social aspect of eating and sharing food has strengthened us and empowered our endeavours. So how can your catered event be ‘better connected’?
An easy and obvious solution is that since eating is a shared experience, make sure the playing field is even and equal so everyone can participate in the activity. Know your audience, and even if you’re not catering specifically for vegetarians, for example, what’s the harm in including some vegetarian options? That way you can be sure that there is something for everyone.
“Don’t try to win over the haters; you are not a jackass whisperer.”
This is a poignant line. To set out to please everyone is a fallacy. To succeed with some people, you’re probably going to put some other people offside. It’s the way the world works! As far as catering goes, at least make your choices defensible. Understand as best you can the parameters of your event – guest numbers, dietary needs, locations, essential requirements. Plan based on what you know and create a justifiable position for your actions.
“Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we’re all in this together.”
Thanks Brene! This is a great reminder for all of us, especially those involved in the facilitation of events – a pastime that can occasionally be a bit dicey. Things can and do go wrong. What matters isn’t what goes wrong, but how it is dealt with. Kindness, patience and a sense of humour are all useful assets for an event organiser or host. Dispense them lavishly!