Intrigued by all the hype about the show called Hell’s Kitchen with Chef Gordon Ramsey I finally broke down one night and watched part of an episode. The trailers and ads for the show had turned me off as I do not believe that treating people like crap, screaming, yelling. belittling and demeaning is the best way to create a culture of excellence for long term performance.
After about 10 minutes of watching the show I turned it off out of frustration. I then proceeded to go on a rant about Chef Ramsey’s philosophies on getting the best out of people and ‘training’ them to perform under the demands of the job. My youngest son Cody was near by and was good enough to challenge my assumptions based on the brief part of the show I had seen. He indicated that Ramsey is not always like that, I did not watch the whole show and that I was unaware of what went on behind the scenes. It is always good to get an outside opinion when one is emotionally invested in your position (although you have to hate it when your kids are right).
As a result of that discussion I made the conscious decision to watch an entire show one night and happened to catch an episode when they were down to the final two chef’s to see who was going to be selected the winner. On that show Chef Ramsey actually treated the two participants like professionals and while he set the standards high for them he treated them as if he expected them to meet the challenge and perform at the top of their game. They responded accordingly.
This lead to another discussion recently with both my sons (ages 26 and 23) who serve as a sounding board for me on a variety of issues. They both are well grounded, have great imaginations,have an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion for excellence but also bring a very different point of view to many issues and discussions.
By now some of you are thinking you are reading the wrong blog and must have somehow gotten connected to the food channel. Let me assure you that you are at the right place and there is both a point to this and a direct relation to training law enforcement professionals.
Unfortunately, you will have to wait until Friday to get the rest of the story. I am on the road teaching a ground fighting instructor course and have to complete some of my daily reading as well as some preparation for tomorrow’s class. I promise I will finish the rant and make my point Friday. If you have a chance to catch an episode of the show between now and then please do so.