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Are you a cook or a chef?


The Chef – The Omphaloskepsis-er

According to Webster – omphaloskepsis noun
om·​pha·​lo·​skep·​sis | \ ˌäm(p)-fə-lō-ˈskep-səs \
Definition of omphaloskepsis
: contemplation of one’s navel as an aid to meditation omphaloskepsis practiced by Eastern mystics
a preponderance of emotional self-awareness has sent us sliding dangerously into omphaloskepsis
— Fiona McCann

I once had a friend visit me at a vacation home rental in Corolla Light, on the North Carolina Outer Banks. He said he’d make us dinner but our fridge was not well stocked. He scooped the sparse un-likely combination of ingredients. Took out a honeydew melon, some parrano cheese, some other stuff. Put it in a blender and viola… we had a fabulous cold soup. It was great.

He just made the recipe up on the spot. Twenty years later, he never made that soup again. He was a Chef. He likes to create. He’s inspired by invention. He gets bored and sucks at following directions.

These folks are the inspiration behind innovation, the innovators in product, marketing, and disruption.

The Cook – The GSD-er

According to the Urban Dictionary – GSD
Gettin’ Shit Done. Usually referring to some sort of work (i.e. homework).
Mom: What are you going to do after school?
You: GSD

Give a Cook a list of ingredients, give them the chopping, slicing, and prep instructions. What temperature to set the oven and for how long and out comes a perfectly prepared dish, a perfect execution they can exactly reproduce over and over again.

These folks get joy out of perfect execution. They get their kicks by seeing others enjoy, appreciate, and accept what they prepared for them. It’s not about the creation as much as a result.

These people are the sales folks, who don’t mind hearing 9 nos on the way to a win. They are the operators that execute perfection. They are the backbone of every company.

What’s It All Mean

According To Hellman – Just like a great restaurant or a basketball team. Build your company team like you’d build a basketball team. You need the right mix of Tall Shot Blockers, Dunkers, Ball Handlers, and Pure Shooters.

A company of Chefs is a think tank that thinks about what ought to be thunk and rarely gets the thunked stuff into the marketplace. A company of Cooks will eventually be disrupted… out-competed into oblivion. The key to success is to have the right mix of Chefs and Cooks and just like every great restaurant, the Chef to Cook ratio is heavily weighted to Cooks.

If you’re running a company and you’re a Chef… realize and appreciate the value of your Cooks. You need them. If you are a business leader Cook make sure you have a trusty, zany, creative Chef at your side, and embrace the zaniness.

Are you a chef or a cook? Does your company have the right mix of either chef or cook? I’m an executive coach. It is my job to have you analyze the quality of your Chefs and Cooks. I help you find the right mix of thinkers and doers.  Want to know what that feels like?  Try a complimentary coaching session by signing up here. Trust your heart that says, press that little green button.