Monday, November 26, 2012

The Power of the Middleman

A good chef doesn’t just cook the food, he connects the people who consume it.

My friend Jonathan, a chef who only makes things he hasn’t cooked yet, develops new recipes every week. Then, on the weekends he performs cooking demonstrations at his local farmers market. And not only is the food delicious, but his ingredients are available right there at the market, from his vendor partners, along with free samples and recipe cards for the guests.

The customers love it because of the healthy dish ideas, the vendors love it because it highlights their products, the farmers market loves it because of the community building, the bystanders love it because of the entertainment value, and the chef loves it because he has the opportunity to do what he loves.

And the food is only the beginning.

If you step back at see the genius behind this strategy, it’s all about the social function of Jonathan’s work. He is the glue that connects disconnected people, the knot that ties together all the parties of the supply chain and the middleman that helps all the relevant players get business out of the equation.

Food truly is life’s binding agent.

Are you cooking for your customers or connecting them to each other?