This month’s Member Spotlight features Gerald “Jerry” Robinson, Program Manager at The Boeing Company. Jerry answered several questions for us.
What is the biggest challenge you face in business? How do you manage it?
The biggest challenge is downsizing at several sites and maintaining a level of good service in a P&L environment. We manage it through daily, weekly, and monthly communication of all aspects of the business; from sales, food, and labor cost to current participation. Finally, we conduct 30, 60, and 90 day planning.
You’ve been involved with SHFM since 2001 – what is your favorite aspect of being a member?
I would have to say the sharing of ideas and how others are handling their business in particular scenarios.
Which foodservice/hospitality services do you oversee and how does SHFM help you balance these responsibilities?
I oversee contract feeding through three suppliers at Boeing in the So.CA. and Arizona areas. SHFM provides a look into other companies and how they are handling their respective business issues.
What advice would you share with a young professional considering the industry?
It would be that they become involved from the lowest level to the highest, to gain as much insight as possible into what happens throughout the business and how the financials get to the end state! You have to know how the business operates so that you can make the right decisions going forward.
What and where was the best meal you ever had?
My wife and I travel around in our fifth wheel trailer and we try a number of small local locations wherever we are either through Guy Fieri books around his DDD adventures, or I will simply ask someone where they go to get the best Mexican, Italian etc. food in their area. The best Mexican food outside of California would have to be in Salt Lake City, Utach, at the Red Iguana via DDD! Another great location is the Brothers restaurants in Central California Sides Hardware and Shoes in Los Olivos or The Red Barn in Santa Ynez, the later being a little higher-end, but both have outstanding food. I highly recommend them if you’re in the area.