Last night after my family and I finished a meeting in preparation for our trip to Guatemala this summer. Afterward, we stopped into a nearby restaurant for a bite to eat. As we entered the dining room, I noticed the General Manager working at one of the back tables. It was very evident that he was the General Manager, because he had all his financial reports and other documents and reports and details and his reports spread out. Plus people kept bringing him drinks and you could tell that they were rather respectful of this man. 

As I went to the buffet I walked by and I noticed that there on the table was not a plate of food from the restaurant we were in, but instead the guy was eating a big hoagie sandwich and chips from the sandwich shop across the street.

During the entire dinner I couldn’t get it out of my mind. I was just down and out right bugged. Here we are at a restaurant and the General Manager who is supposed to be in charge of the restaurant business is eating a competitor’s food. I kept mulling it over in my mind—thinking, “Is there something wrong with this food? Is there something going on that we customers don’t know about?”

One thing that I have made a vigilant attempt to do in every company I have established is to do what I call, “Eat Our Own Cooking.” We live it, we eat it, we drink it, we sleep it, we drink our own Kool-Aid, we actively behave.

Now are we perfect? No. No, we are not always perfect. But we always eat our own cooking. The reason why is; if you can’t believe in your own product enough to truly endorse it and stand by it, then how is anyone else ever expected to get on board and fully sustain it?

One of the things that I am really proud of in both of the books that I presented and put forth to market is the we truly ate our own cooking.

We learned some things along the way. We had to improve our cooking. But we did it. I give you the same advice—eat your own cooking. It doesn’t matter if you are in a service industry, or if you market a product, or if your business is information based—eat your own cooking. Stand by it! 

Don’t bringing some other company’s brand into your restaurant, spreading it out on the table, and sending the wrong message to your customers. That’s just completely inappropriate. Stand behind what you put forth into the market and eat your own cooking!