Caterers have huge hearts. Caterers are wonderfully obsessed with doing good things for their clients and staff. The question is whether having a huge heart and a desire to do good things is a wise business strategy. I think it is.
Over the last 20 years, I’ve had the privilege of interfacing with all types and sizes of caterers. The one thing I know for sure is that, in catering, the nice caterers who also follow correct business practices, finish first. Staff and customers are drawn to caterers who offer kindness, fairness, empathy and a genuine desire to help.
This does not mean that a caterer has to say “yes” to all requests from staff or clients. A catering business still needs to create profit. As business people, caterers need to make wise decisions about things that affect their bottom line. The quality and longevity of the bottom line is directly tied into how clients and staff perceive the actions of a particular caterer.
Recently I’ve spoken with many caterers who realize, now more than ever, that profitability is essential to their being able to do even more good things for others. With profitability, caterers can offer staff the increased earnings that insure them the good things they wish for themselves and their families. Profitability also permits caterers to offer pro bono catering to their community charities.
Caterers who follow the doctrine of doing good things gain the respect of those around them. They set the tone for those they come in contact with to also do good things. When a caterer demonstrates to staff and clients actions that go above and beyond what is required, the end result is fierce loyalty towards that caterer. Doing good things is contagious.
What about caterers who don’t practice doing good things? I’ve known some. The chances are you know a few also. Don’t they make money? Some do. But the ones I’ve known usually have more than the average problems with both staff and clients. The old axiom “what goes around comes around” is usually their downfall.
In life and in business, good is good and bad is bad. It is hard to hide either the good or bad actions that one takes. Staff and clients make conclusions about a caterer based on the consistency of the caterer’s actions.
Practice doing good things. It helps you be a better person and run a better business. And if you don’t do good things, it’s likely to catch up with you sooner or later.