The Learning Leader Show With Ryan Hawk

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#372: Will Guidara


  • Sustaining excellence =
    • Everyone has the capacity for excellence
      • Hard work
      • Giving a lot of yourself to something — A” passion for the thing you’re excellent at doing.”
      • The nobility of service
      • It requires getting up on a day when you’re tired and not feeling it
        • “You need to be on even when you feel off”
  • The “pre-shift” meeting — “As a leader, you have a responsibility to share what inspires you.”
    • “Everyone craves affirmation.”
  • Lessons from his Mom:
    • She became a quadriplegic when Will was nine
      • You can talk things into existence – Will’s mom said she wanted to stay alive until he graduated college. And she did it by one day. Doctors said she should have died when Will was 12.
        • “What would you attempt to do if you could not fail?”
      • The power of non-verbal communication.
      • Integrity in the face of adversity – Life is not always awesome. There’s always ups and downs. Perspective is key.
  • Eleven Madison Park – Setting the goal to be the #1 rated restaurant in the world. In 2010, they were #50.
    • Seven years later, they were #1.
  • “You need to love what you’re doing to be great at it.”
  • There is power in having extraordinary intention
  • Strategic planning —
    • Be specific and actionable
    • Have endless reinvention
    • Be willing to take risks
  • “Unreasonable Hospitality”
    • You need to decide what you want to embody
  • “Business like life is all about how you make people feel. It’s that simple and that hard.” – Danny Meyer
  • Hiring:
    • “We hired dream weavers from art schools, designers…”
    • Experiential design separated them from the rest
  • Be present
    • Listen to what is being said and what’s not being said. Engage with people. Serve them. Meet them where they are.
  • “Hospitality is one size meets one” – Have to meet them one at a time
  • What’s the secret to a happy marriage?
    • “Never stop pursuing each other”
  • Ruth’s Chris – The special calamari strips — Not on the menu, but available to make an experience exceptional
  • The nobility of service… The four words:
    • Hospitality
    • Excellence
    • Education – “A day you aren’t learning isn’t a day worth living”
    • Passion – “Our work matters. What we do matters.”
  • Meeting at The White House:
    • Restaurants during the pandemic
  • His dad’s advice — “Adversity is a terrible thing to waste”
  • “It’s not what happened to you, it’s how you respond.”
    • “Through crisis comes community”
  • The Welcome Conference
    • “Hospitality is just as much a craft as cooking.”
  • Will’s dad is his hero
    • “Next level intense responsibility”
    • He never complained
    • “Name what you want to accomplish and do it”
  • “The secret to happiness is always something to look forward to.”
  • Here is WHY joining a Learning Leader Circle is a good idea…

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