Marlin Network launches Foodservice Professional Panel

Marlin Network launches Foodservice Professional Panel

This foodservice marketing agency is putting together a restaurant operator panel and is looking for professionals just like you to become influencers in the industry!

Marlin Network is an agency that has been in business for over 30 years and is on a mission to engage consumers in better experiences away from home.

Currently, the agency is looking for input from operators, owners, chefs, and managers across all segments of commercial restaurants. Marlin Network wants the opinion of those people in the industry who are considered key decision makers, or the people purchasing product for their place of business.

This is an interesting opportunity for industry professionals who qualify, where they will be rewarded for voicing their thoughts on products anonymously. The company will never sell the participant’s information or market to them. Marlin Network’s goal is to better the foodservice industry and incorporate the opinions of real food industry professionals into their projects.

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4 Myths About Restaurant Leadership Debunked

4 Myths About Restaurant Leadership Debunked

You made it to the top! You are a leader in your restaurant. Before you get too comfortable, let’s see if your leadership game is on point. Being called a leader and being a leader are at times not one and the same. With more and more restaurants opening each year the strain on the labor pool is becoming an epidemic. We struggle to fill leadership positions. Maybe the reason is because we don’t have a clear understanding of what true leadership is?

Undeclared expectations and undefined roles are usually at the forefront of this dilemma. We need to do a better job talking about what true leadership is. There are a lot of urban myths out there about what people may think is leadership. To understand what leadership is, we first must take a look at what it is not.

Here are four common myths about restaurant leadership:

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Cost Control and Operator ROI with ENERGY STAR

The path to sustainability and energy saving doesn't mean you have to start running off the grid — it can be with a simple step in the right direction. In this episode of "Rock My Restaurant," join show hosts William Bender and Eric Norman as they sit down with Kirsten Hesla, product manager at ENERGY STAR, and Carly Burke, energy efficiency consultant at ICF International, to chat about how ENERGY STAR can take your brand to the next level.

The EPA's ENERGY STAR program is the largest, most successful voluntary energy conservation movement. Anyone familiar with the blue label knows to a certain extent that it means a product was stamped with efficiency approval, but what exactly does that entail?

Every year, ENERGY STAR products go through series of testing and are certified by third parties, signaling that those tools meet the highest standards in quality, performance, and efficiency — everything an operator should be looking for.

"So, that really means they're [operators] getting a high-efficient, high-quality product, and I think that operators who are looking to incorporate those types of products, or want to move to a more sustainable practice, or save money in general, these are the products that have been vetted through rigorous testing," Burke said.

ENERGY STAR also recognizes products through the Emerging Technology Award, which is an honor bestowed upon the best innovative technologies that reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, all without sacrificing features or functionality. How can you find these products? On ENERGY STAR's commercial foodservice equipment page, operators can use a product finder tool that allows them to search for specific models or by category. There is even a rebate finder tool that allows buyers to find the best deals in their region.

The program aims to make the choice for sustainability and energy-saving easy. While some operators do not have the time or resources to research the best technology effectively, these ENERGY STAR tools take the guess work out through search engines and blue labels. But efficient products don't just save energy, they also save money.

As far as ROI, ENERGY STAR encourages the idea that they are two price tags associated with all equipment.

"One is the cost at the point of purchase. And second, and most importantly, is the cost of energy to run that product throughout its entire lifetime," Hesla said. "With ENERGY STAR, you know you're getting an efficient product, and your cost of energy over the course of [the] 10, 15 years you have that product, you're going to reap a lot of benefits as far as money."

Watch the full episode now!

Innovations from NRA Show 2016

At the NRA Show, the industry's biggest and most dynamic trade show and event, it is an endless sea of exhibitions, educational sessions, products, and new ideas across the 2.6-million-square-foot-space of Chicago's McCormick Place convention center. Needless to say, while every inch is filled with discoveries, it can get a little overwhelming.

In this episode of "Rock My Restaurant," show hosts William Bender and Eric Norman do the leg work for you. After walking the floor, they sit down and product review some of the best innovations they spotted at NRA Show 2016. Trying to figure out the latest software and technology to take your restaurant to the next level? Check out these finds and get ready to rock your restaurant.

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The Lineup

Noodoe: Noodoe could potentially be the next breakthrough in efficiency and speed of service. This device consists of a wristband, which servers wear, and a cube with different icons symbolizing different needs, such as a check or beverage refill, that the table of guests hold onto. These pieces of tech connect wirelessly to the cloud and effortlessly speeds up waiter-to-diner communications, and in the future, could lead to better communications to the back of house.

"I thought that [Noodoe] was pretty cool because it's fully customizable, too, so the owner or operator can put anything they want on there. So, depending on what side the little unit is sitting on, that's what translates to your wristband," Eric said.

Zenreach: Email capture and marketing is one of the most challenging aspects when it comes to improving your restaurant's client base. Through Zenreach, brands can build a database through their Wi-Fi. When guests log in by submitting their email addresses, Zenreach collects this information and brands can use these lists to drive sales in marketing, whether through sent reminders, customer loyalty programs, or other incentives.

HotSchedules: HotSchedules it a revolutionary, restaurant management platform. From talent recruiting, to a continuous training e-learning program, to flexible staff scheduling, to instant message communications, this software does a lot of hard work to make processes a lot easier. Not to mention other features such as inventory and asset management — what can't you accomplish with HotSchedules?

STUBBORN Soda: STUBBORN soda is a paragon of what craft beverage should be all about. Through its natural ingredients and unique flavors (Orange Hibiscus, Lemon Berry Açaí, or Pineapple Cream Soda, anyone?), guests will be thirsty for more.

"What this does is really allow an operator to be better, special, or different," Bill said. "They also have a wonderful dispenser for fast casual restaurants called a pumper."

TradingTable: Whether you are an operator, distributor, or supplier, it doesn't matter what side of the table you sit on — this digital, paperless ordering platform connects each party involved in the transaction. It is a seamless solution and is a total automation of a purchasing agent's duties. The system has algorithms set to help operators find the best prices for products, which they can then order through the platform.

Ovention: Ovention may look like a typical conveyor oven, but this high-capacity, high-speed oven has two shuttles, allowing chefs to cook different food items with similar cooking temperatures. Chicken strips cooking on one side (through closed cooking, which means no need for exhausts or hoods) can then switch over to cookies on the other. This maximizes versatility and speed.

Riage X3: Two words: massage chair. 

"You were able to fit that into your schedule?" Bill asked.

"Ahh, 20 minutes of pure heaven, man. I could hardly get out of the chair" Eric said.

Watch the full episode now!