It’s Foodie Friday and since we’re reviewing the most read posts of the year I’m combining the two. I’m also cheating a little. The most read food-related post this year wasn’t written for our Friday Foodie Fun. It was the post about finding a thumb tack in clam chowder. This post, originally titled Recipes And Business, was actually written just before the Giants played in the Super Bowl in 2012 and was, in fact, the most-read foodie post this year. Nice to know it has legs and it did way better than the Giants this year! Enjoy.
Many of you will be cooking something for Sunday’s big game and so this Foodie Friday we’ll think a little bit about what recipes to follow. Actually, it’s more about how one follows any recipe, and what that has in common with business.
As I think you might know, my feeling about cooking is that it’s more like jazz while baking is more Baroque music– far more structured and precise. Given that, the way I see recipes might differ from how you see them and how that perspective carries into business. Let’s see.
A recipe is a guide, not an edict. I look at them as outlines of the dish, but it’s up to me as the cook to insert the flavors I want to present. For example, if I’m making chili for Sunday’s game, I know that most of the folks who will be at the party enjoy fairly hot food so I might change the spice mix accordingly. Cooking veal cutlets for 20 can be expensive but turkey cutlets in the same recipe can be just as tasty. With a vegan and a vegetarian as members of the household here, I often modify recipes to accommodate their eating styles too. I have a sense of the destination and the recipe is the map, but there are often many routes to get to where I’m trying to go.
Business is the same. There are some basic road maps – take in more than you spend, treat customers and employees well – but every business is different. Sticking to the recipe isn’t always possible, and sometimes the road we wish to take is closed, but with a good understanding of fundamental techniques and enough knowledge of the building blocks (ingredients), one can cope with changing market conditions and take advantage of opportunities (I was going to make snapper but look at the fresh grouper on sale!) that might arise.
So as you’re whipping up that pot of gumbo, maybe try thickening it with okra instead of your usual file powder. If you’re not having much luck using SEM for online commerce, maybe social media can be more efficient. It’s jazz – learn to improvise – oh, and Go Big Blue!