I’m a big fan of cooperation … in business, this can mean seemingly disparate groups establishing and working toward a mutual goal that ultimately benefits all parties.



We have a great example of cooperation in our Operator’s Opinion article this month. Brian Gill shares his story of how Five Guys aligned with a manufacturer to develop a unique solution that solves an immediate problem for the operator, and helps the manufacturer develop a more effective and refined product offering.

It is all too easy to get in one’s lane and stay there mentally: I make equipment, I buy equipment, I sell equipment, and we at FE&S cover all of the above. But if you’re able to take a step back and look at the broader picture, there are so many complementary goals that may be satisfied more effectively through cooperative efforts.

When it works well, this type of teamwork seems so natural that it is hard to understand why we don’t actively seek situations that call for greater cooperation on a regular basis. Perhaps it is due to the level of trust necessary to enter into such an arrangement. After all, no one wants to feel taken advantage of at the end of a lengthy joint project. Everyone involved has to remain convinced throughout that their interests will be met in the end.

If this crucial condition can be met, the opportunities made possible through greater cooperation are just about limitless.

This spirit of cooperation entered into the thinking behind the move by NAFEM, CFESA, FEDA and MAFSI to combine spring conferences into one food hall-like meeting of the minds that will answer the prayers of many a weary foodservice equipment traveler by combining several gotta-be-there meetings into one. Well, actually two. Due to a contractual obligation, MAFSI, while supportive of the effort, won’t be able to participate in the first foray. But FEDA, NAFEM and CFESA will convene March 21-25, 2018, in Palm Desert, Calif. Make sure to put it on your calendar.