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"Surviving in a Cost-Conscious Organization"

In today's highly budget-conscious business environment, in-house dining operations in the B&I segment increasingly are under pressure to justify their value to the larger organization. Amy Greenberg has been through several rounds of subsidy reductions, downsizings and department consolidations. Here is her advice:

Understand your role

"Our mantra is to be sure that we understand, and the business understands, our role in the organization. In dining and conferencing, your function can easily be seen as a cost and not as a benefit.

Cultivate focus but not tunnel vision

"You need to understand the mission of your company and the larger political landscape so that you're not myopic in terms of how you run your business. Focus is fine, but tunnel vision can be deadly.

Match your service level to corporate expectations

"If your company demands best-in-class service (and hopefully it does) you want to be there to provide it. If it demands something other than that, then as leader of your department you have to recognize and accept that and provide it.

"Your value ultimately lies in supporting what the business needs: entertaining clients in a certain way, for example. If the needs change, you have to be ready to change with them. I love the quote: ‘Change is inevitable and stressful.’ You have to withstand the stress and be nimble. Don't let every change throw you."

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