This Foodie Friday will involve a trip to the store for me. I like to avoid the markets over the weekend so Friday mornings are sometimes spent reviewing and searching for recipes. A little menu planning in advance means just today’s trip to the stores.
As I was going through a few food sites looking for ideas it struck me how many recipes involved the word “easy.” I suspect part of that is an appeal to the time crunch all of us seem to be under and part of it is to make cooking less intimidating for those whose kitchen skills involve a microwave and opening a can. The recipes are indeed easy – dump some stuff in the slow cooker, walk away for 6 hours, voilà! Supper! While I love my slow cooker and have made, say, pulled pork in it, I’m not going to tell you that the end product is anything like, or near as good, as what I produce from my smoker. The smoker is a tricky beast to use and requires a lot of attention. Which is, of course, the business point.
I’m not going to tell you that we need to make things as difficult for ourselves as we can. In fact, I think quite the opposite. What I won’t do or ask my clients to do as part of making things easier is to denigrate the quality of their offerings. That’s where “easy” tends to become hard. Maintaining the greatness of your brand, your products, your services isn’t easy nor will it ever be. It requires constant vigilance and a proactive mindset. You can’t just set the cooker and walk away.
So here is the easy recipe for this Friday. This is the one that gets us to great while being relatively easy. As a person, learn the basic skills you need and practice them. That’s true in the kitchen and the office. Possessing those skills – critical thinking and communicating first and foremost – and getting them right makes using them easy. As a manager, hire and train only those people because when every member of the team gets the basics right every day the end product will be easy AND great.