A Job, a Career, or Calling In The Food Industry
How do you find your life’s calling?
When I started working in the food, industry, it didn’t take very long to realize that I had finally found my calling, not just a job, or a career but to be an entrepreneur.
When Chip Conley, head of hospitality and strategy at Airbnb was asked the question how do you find your life’s calling?, his response was “What did you love doing when you were 6, 8, 10 years old, like I had one friend who even at 6 was making mud pies as if they were real pies. Then she became a lawyer but was always unhappy. So she quit being a lawyer and is now one of the biggest pastry chefs in the world.”
He recalled as a child, he was always pretending to run a restaurant in his house. He had always wanted to be in the hospitality business.
Many people say if you find the things you do where you lose all sense of time while you are doing it, you just might find what you want to be when you grow up, whenever that might happen. It WILL happen!
Try to find the things that bring you meaning. Things that bring meaning not only to you but also to others. That is where you will find your purpose and your calling.
I grew up in an Italian family, where food was the second most important thing but not that far behind “family is first.” The kitchen and it’s aromas always brought us together every holiday, birthday, christening, and funerals, etc. If it wasn’t our kitchen, it was someone else’s.
The food was a big part of my upbringing it was a way of showing love and support. Gathering with family and sharing gave me a feeling of comfort and belonging.
I remember having a conversation with a good friend, and we were exchanging food stories, I had mentioned my addiction to Chinese food, and as a young child, I enjoyed experiencing dining out with my family. She replied, “my first time eating in a Chinese restaurant was when I was around 18.” I was shocked!
I was almost afraid to say I was 8 or 10 when I first sat down at the table in a Chinese restaurant, with a white linen napkin on my lap. I can still see that scalding cup of hot tea, a bowl of noodles and duck sauce for dipping staring me in the face, that glass of ice water being refilled every few minutes, a cup of wonton soup and an egg roll to start, next the entrée that would be decided for me (before I knew which menu item became my favorite), which always delighted my taste buds! All of this wonderous food to be topped off with dessert, a bowl of pistachio ice cream and the famous fortunate cookie. The End and my tummy lived happily ever after, till the next family to visit.
I’ll never forget how awful I felt that she had to wait that long before dining in a Chinese restaurant.
Was I lucky or spoiled, maybe?
I may have taken eating out and having a Mom that was a wonderful cook for granted when I was young, But TODAY I know being brought up in a family that celebrated food was certainly a gift!
I didn’t see food in my future as a job, career or calling until my late twenties. Now that I look back at it, it was right there in front of me, it just took a while for me to notice. It happens to many of us.
I got my start in the food business over 30 years ago after quitting my job as a Dental Technician.
I can still remember getting up that very morning opening the newspaper and looking at the wanted ads. I was ready to start something new; I just didn’t know what it would be.
I had to get a job to pay rent and bills, but I didn’t feel pressure it was more of relief. I was leaving a job and career that was making me miserable, somewhere in the back of mind I knew I was going to find my calling?!?
When I saw the ad for a cook no experience necessary will train at a local delicatessen, I said I’m applying, I went in and got hired right on the spot and my career in the food industry began.
I’ve been very fortunate to work with some amazingly talented chefs and restaurant owners who taught me the skills and gave me the confidence to become a restaurant owner and caterer.
I’ve devoted several years of my life-giving advice, training, and teaching entrepreneurs how to start and grow restaurants and small businesses. Now I’m sharing and developing resources and utilizing my blog to help NEW entrepreneurs, follow in my footsteps.
I continued to struggle with what I wanted to be when I grew up, after graduating high school, a trade school and two years of college.
If you are struggling, and are feeling that your calling may be in the food industry, take my FREE assessment, which includes a FREE one-hour coaching calling.
Let my experience and advice help you decide if your calling is in the food industry.