By Alex Brennan-Martin and Larry Taylor Bright Sky Press (Albany, TX) 2003, $19.95 (hardcover)
The authors of this fairly slim volume (176 pp.) have unchallangeable pedigrees for writing a book about running a successful foodservice business. Brennan-Martin is a member of the Brennan restaurant family ( Brennan's of Houston, Commander's Palace) while Taylor is a successful business consultant with one book (Be an Orange) already under his belt.
The premise of The Simple Truth is stated in its subtitle—Why Focused and Steady Beats Business at the Speed of Light. In other words, this is an anti-business-book business book that seeks to do away with all the fads and cliches and get back down to basics (which, of course, is both a cliche and an ever-recurring fad itself).
Fortunately, Brennan-Martin has plenty of real-world experience to back up the cliches he and Taylor dispense in lieu of those they seek to subvert. Their advice catalog includes such warhorses as “see the world through the customer's eyes,” “harness the power of your staff's self-interest” and—their “secret ingredient”to winning customers (drum roll, please)—”hospitality, not just customer service!”
Obviously, this approach has worked for Brennan-Martin, given the success of his restaurants. So perhaps he and Taylor are on to something: the old verities—the“ simple truth”—may be the key to success after all.