I've always gravitated towards food service jobs, and these were my most impactful experiences.
Old North State Country Club- Quality Service
After working here for 3 summers, this job made me love food. The chef at our site was the executive chef for all McConnel Clubs in the Southeast and was trained in France. He made all the servers meet before each meal to teach us about the options for the night (because he changed them daily). This job was all about presentation and formality- we all wore white collared shirts with ties. We also hosted many weddings and parties. The staff stayed until 2am every night polishing silverware and glasses. Our motto was "good enough never is!" This job taught me how to have excellent customer service and to have pride in my work which are techniques I take with me to every job.
PF Chang's - Pace and Stress
I worked here all 4 years of undergrad and I learned sooooo much. This job was much quicker-paced and was focused more on accuracy than customer service. I was the head coordinating hostess and I loved it! I determined the wait times and decided if we could accommodate large parties. I also had to direct a group of 4 other hosts to guide the guests to their tables. Many people were very upset about the long wait times (weekends were usually 2 hours!) and I had to learn how to not be too concerned about the hiccups of the night in order to just get through to the end. I eventually became a take out associate which meant working in the kitchen to put the orders together. This was very high-stress because I had to quickly determine the correct (unlabeled) dishes that went in the correct bags while also running out to multiple cars and processing their payments. This job made me love the pressure and stress of working in a kitchen. I learned how strong I am at problem-solving under so much stress. I ended each night on such a high knowing that I made it to the end. I don't think I would be happy in a slow-paced job after working here.
Duke Raleigh Hospital - food choice
This job has solidified my desire to work as a food service manager. I still love the rush of the tray line when the patient count is high and having to quickly problem solve when the printer stops working. One new thing I learned was how people choose their food when they eat at the same place every day. With both patients and employees, appearance, flavor, and choice is everything. Many patients are on such restricted diets and we only offer 4 different vegetables. If I were a food service manager I would increase their options, and I believe they would be happier. For the employee cafeteria, I would also try to offer more healthy options and increase the amount of fresh vegetables. Many of our vegetables are from frozen and I believe this impacts the flavor. So many employees choose hamburger and french fries every day because it tastes good! This job has made me want to become a food service manager because I want to encourage people to chose healthy options.
During my dietetic internship with Sodexo, I completed my food service management rotation at the pharmaceutical sales company, Glaxo Smith Kline.