Pizza Today - June 2024 - 16

Drawing Inspiration from the Sports World
Building Blocks
Nick Bogacz
Founder & President
Caliente Pizza & Draft House
" I'm a big believer in the idea
that you don't rise to the
occasion - you sink to the
level of your training. "
- Mike Tomlin, Head Coach,
Pittsburgh Steelers.
T
he characteristics
between the sports
world and owning
and operating a pizzeria
are vast. It is really what I
fell in love with many years
ago. I was a skinny beanpole
as a kid, and that meant that
I became the coach of many
of my brother's youth sports
teams. I gained many leadership
qualities at a young age
unknowingly. Th e fi rst Friday
I worked in a pizzeria I simply
fell in love with the team
aspect of what was happening.
It all started when the order
was placed and then the ticket
got handed off to the dough
stretcher, who then gave it to
the person making the pizza.
And just when you think
that's it, the pizza goes in the
oven and an oven tender does
his part. Th e result of seeing
how happy the customer was
to receive the pizza was a
magical moment for me. I
remember early on in my
pizza delivery days showing
up at a customer's door. Th e
16 / PIZZATODAY.COM / JUNE 2024
guy was having a party, and
everyone cheered for the
pizza guy (me)!
Th e reason I tell those
stories here is to bring to
light the idea that what we
do is special and takes a
great team and training. I
believe that many of us need
inspiration from other walks
of life to bring that aura into
our kitchens. I quoted Mike
Tomlin to start this article,
and recently I was lucky
enough to be in a private
setting with him. Th e room
was full of business owners.
I thought the questions they
were going to ask would be
football related. But, to my
delight, they were aimed at
team building. One of the
questions was how to handle
a big personality that also
produces at a high level.
He answered that everyone
needs to be treated as an
individual, and that every
person needs to be attended
to with a diff erent approach.
How you talk with one
person and what methods
work with one person may
not work with another.
One of the other questions
was centered on a
moment of diffi culty or a
very decisive decision and
how you bring the team
back together afterwards.
Th at answer was also telling.
He spoke about confronting
it head-on and letting everyone
know that things are not
personal, but that it's a business
and business decisions
need to be made. Th e most
important part, though, is
not letting things build up
but also getting ahead of the
issues and dealing with them
as they come up.
When we realize that it
may seem like we are in the
pizza business, but we are in
the people business, most of
our issues will start to have
solutions. Th e more that we
can build our team around
great people and then teach
them our ways, the quicker
we will win the day-to-day
grind. In the next installment,
we will get into what
fundamentals and back-tobasics
are important to us as
pizzeria operators.
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Pizza Today - June 2024

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - June 2024

Pizza Today - June 2024 - CT1
Pizza Today - June 2024 - CT2
Pizza Today - June 2024 - Cover1
Pizza Today - June 2024 - Cover2
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 3
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 4
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 5
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 6
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 7
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 8
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 9
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 10
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 11
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 12
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 13
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 14
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 15
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 16
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 17
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 18
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 19
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 20
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 21
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 22
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 23
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 24
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 25
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 26
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 27
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 28
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 29
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 30
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 31
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 32
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 33
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 34
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 35
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 36
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 37
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 38
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 39
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 40
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 41
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 42
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 43
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 44
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 45
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 46
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 47
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 48
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 49
Pizza Today - June 2024 - 50
Pizza Today - June 2024 - Cover3
Pizza Today - June 2024 - Cover4
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