Your Clear Next Step has exciting news - we’ve moved! The new location is a place where we have the chance to make it all our own! We’re still in the process of getting settled, growing into our new space and learning how best to use it. It just wouldn’t be a challenge without a few bumps along the way, even from the very beginning.
As someone who has moved around a lot in her life, there are a few tips and tricks I’ve picked up. They came in handy for the YCNS team during the move, but that’s not the only place these tips apply! They can also be useful while managing a project, sending a child off to college, even trying to prepare a new recipe. So whatever challenge - big or small - that you’re facing, try out these tips for a smooth process.
Patricia and her kitchen staff have spent all week preparing for a food critic to visit the restaurant. They’ve been given a heads up that he plans to arrive during one of the busiest times of the night. This critic has the power to drag the restaurant’s reputation through the mud, or make it shine.
1. Prepare and plan ahead
Ensure you have all that you need beforehand. For us, this meant boxes, movers, a schedule in place for packing, and then each of us helping to unpack and set up. We had to work ahead to figure out what needed to happen, and in what order. There were steps that had to be completed before others. The same goes for the challenge you’re experiencing: make sure you’ve acquired what’s necessary ahead of time, and that you have a plan in place - it can be as simple as a sequence of events or checklist!
Patricia feels she’s thought of everything - from the staff chosen to be working in the kitchen that night, to the dish they’re preparing for the critic, even where he’ll be seated in the restaurant. She knows the kitchen will have to be stocked with all of the required ingredients and tools to prepare the dish. Patricia’s confident it can be prepared and presented well.
2. Establish and communicate location
We had to decide where things were going to go so the movers had a good idea of where to put things and could be efficient about it. We clearly labeled boxes and even had them organized in groups at the old place. Then, as the movers unloaded the truck, all they had to do was learn the layout of the new location and place boxes in the designated rooms. As for the challenge that you’re facing, maybe it’s a matter of where things are going to come from instead. Knowing location can clear up a lot of gray areas and save time.
The dish Patricia wants to make for the critic is not something the restaurant has on the menu - she wanted to ensure that nobody else would be ordering it, and that it would be specially made. However, this meant it wasn’t a guarantee that the kitchen would have the proper ingredients. Their produce supplier had to search around for somewhere to acquire an ingredient they’d never used before.
3. Outsource help
Don’t be afraid to search or ask for help from someone outside of the main group. We had help setting up wifi and utilities because we had a million other things going on. As a fairly small company, there are only so many hands and minds to go around, and it’s okay to admit we can’t do it all - at least not alone. Asking or accepting help can allow insight, breathing room, and peace of mind.
Patricia and her staff chose this particular dish because they learned something about the critic. They’d heard from the news that the critic was in town and planning to visit the restaurant. So, Patricia reached out to the news outlet asking if they had any more information about the critic. She learned where the critic was from a different country, and researched traditional dishes of that area. By preparing something familiar, she hopes to invoke nostalgia and impress him.
Bonus: Keep in mind - You don’t know what you don’t know
Sometimes you have to live in the space for a bit before you know what you actually need. It’s those things you may not think of amongst the bigger or more pressing issues. For us it was a microwave, a janitorial process and tools, copying keys, and how we could make the space ours with decorations. As we learn more about our spaces, we're taking notes. Things like regulating temperature and learning how sunlight would come in through windows came after we'd used the space for a few days.
As you get more comfortable with challenges, it can become easier to manage risks and think of the things you previously overlooked - or couldn't have known. When challenges are tricky, it may take a while to figure out the things you need - or don’t need. Sometimes it takes testing the waters before you find what works well and what doesn’t, what's necessary and what's not.
Now that they’ve acquired what they need, the kitchen begins practicing to prepare the dish. All is running smoothly until it comes time to use the new ingredient. Including it in the recipe seemed easy enough, but Patricia’s kitchen staff quickly learned that the process of preparing it was more difficult than they originally thought. Since they’d never done it before, how could they know what it would be like? The practice run was the test the kitchen needed to successfully prepare the dish, and impress the critic.
The move to a new location is a step towards better for Your Clear Next Step. This change hasn’t been easy, but we continue to learn from our experiences, and share tips to help others get through their challenges. We can all learn from the process, and become even better at finding our way through it.
What tips do you have for facing challenges? Let us know in the comments!