Thinking about what catering really means!

My colleague, John Dumbrille, and I often have deep discussions about Catering in a multi-unit restaurant environment. After all, John IS our VP of MonkeyU. As such, it’s his job to think about it, all the time.

Every time we dive in, we peel another layer. And then we think we get it. That somehow we NOW get it!

Thing is, every time we get there, we discover another layer. It’s like an Onion. Layer after layer. Complexity after complexity. Concept after concept.

Well this week, John proposed this really hair-brained idea. I mean a real doozie. It’s so dumb. And as my friend Tom Feltenstein would say, dumb is actually really smart.

So, this week John sends me a document. Actually, more like an essay really, but it was short.

He proposes the hypothesis of “catering as a gesture”. Meaning that the consumer is really buying these catering services as a gesture to others to feed others. In doing so, any brand must understand that the difference between fulfilling services for a gesture, is very different than fulfilling services to satisfy the personal instant gratification that a consumer might get when ordering a juicy and dripping hamburger with a milkshake.

And so, we continued on with that idea. We discussed the state if the fast food industry and how they have really painted themselves into a sea of negative public relations.

Then we realized. That in fact, the brands experiencing this negative PR can actually look to catering as a gesture that they can make to the American consumer. That in fact, by using catering, they might gesture to to the public that they are open to change. That in fact they are listening to the fact that their consumers not only want additional services, but in fact for those services (catering), they want healthier options.

Imagine the gesture of catering made by the biggest brands in the world.

Catering can improve our community in so many ways that we have not even considered. Imagine, increasing sales, an opportunity to change negative public perception AND make the American consumer healthier in the process.

Wow! Catering as a gesture. Johns Brilliant!

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