Summer food fun and drink – Sorry we are on Island time

I talk to a lot of employers around Victoria and the Island – food, drink and service employers that is… owners of some of the best cafes, delis and restaurants.

And I ask them: What is the number one challenge when it comes down to staying in business?
Coming through for the customer? Getting out quality product? Getting enough customers?

Nope. None of the above.

Coffee shops closed due to no staff? Brew it at home! Ascaso grinder (shown at left) reviewed over here .

The challenge is the employee. I hear story after story after horror story about the difficulty in acquiring, recruiting and retaining employees… any employees.
Hell, even the bad ones are better than no employees at all.

Examples like: “A friend of mine manages a store in Vancouver in Kitsalano and has shared a number of stories. Most recently there was the girl he had just hired, she went through all the interviews, training etc. then the day before she was to start work calls and tells him that she wants about three weeks off in two weeks, hasn’t even worked a day yet. He said that he couldn’t accomodate this request at this time so she quit before starting work. Then there was the guy he hired who worked two hours, left for a coffee and never returned. Then there are those potential employees who apply, he lines up interviews and they never show, no email no phone call just don’t show up. He called one once and asked if they were coming in for an interview and they said , “no, I am down enjoying the sun at the beach”.

Where is the sense of responsibility?

In the environment that I work in, if you do not allow for “Facebook” or “Internet” time for employees – or allow employees to pack their cell phones and text each other, you are almost setting yourself up for a revolution.

I hate to use the phrase… “Hey, when I was a kid… or a young adult…” But…
Times were not tougher 20 years ago when I started getting into the job market – I think there was an ingrained sense of obligations and responsibilities – not about what’s in it for me!

And now geezers like me in my forties (and the equivalent in women…) are the parents of these slackers. I blame us. I blame us for coddling and spoon feeding, hand-holding and indulging these little over-indulged princesses and princes.

By golly are these kids in for a wake up call one day.
That said…
Who is going to do the dialing!


For the CoffeeCrew Blog, I am Colin Newell… sitting on my duff after a hard days vacation… thinking about stuff…


I talk to a lot of employers around Victoria and the Island – food, drink and service employers that is… owners of some of the best cafes, delis and restaurants. And I ask them: What is the number one challenge when it comes down to staying in business? Coming through for the customer? Getting out…