January 2017, Part I


January 2017, Part I


Halal Guys Offers Comprehensive Job Training Program At New Location In New Jersey. New York City’s Halal Guys has become a staple over the past 26 years, but its new outpost in Newark, New Jersey will include a comprehensive job training program in partnership with Goodwill and the Retail, Hospitality & Tourism Talent Network at Fairleigh Dickinson University. Andaiye Taylor of Brick City Live reported that the program is aimed at growing leadership and restaurant skills among entry-level employees and enabling the business to promote from within. Joseph Hafez, co-owner of The Halal Guys, believes that this will help mold dedicated and skilled workers, leading to better customer service and decrease turnover. He stated, “We’re always telling people they need to provide great customer service, and customers expect it, but how can you expect someone to do that [consistently] if they’re stressed and unhappy, and if they see this job as a dead end?”

Restaurant Job Leads SC Man From Homelessness To Management. On December 29, The Charleston Post and Courier profiled Cuthbert Hurtault, a North Charleston resident who found a second chance in a restaurant job after over a year of living on the streets. Upon completing a six-week kitchen course five years ago, Hurtault was hired as a dishwasher at Taco Boy. About three months after Hurtault was hired, he moved out of the shelter and rented a home, where he now lives with his wife. Today, he continues to work at the restaurant as a prep manager, overseeing four employees. The course teaches the basics of navigating the kitchen and food preparation, and has helped eighty percent of graduates land jobs in the last five sessions.

From Red Lobster To Shark Tank. Daymond John, star of reality television show Shark Tank, recently spoke with Fortune about  his career path from restaurant employee to retail entrepreneur and investor. In a video, John recalled building skills as a full-time employee at Red Lobster while also starting Fubu, the clothing line that made him a millionaire. During his four years at the restaurant, John would wake up at 6 a.m. to make calls and deliveries for Fubu, arrive at Red Lobster at 10 a.m. to work a 12-hour shift, and then come home to sew clothing until 3 a.m. He explained: “I said to myself, ‘I’m going to put in three hours on this business a week. If I can last, I’m going to put in eight hours a week.’”

Letter: Service Sector Employees Deserve Thanks. In a letter to the editor published in the Columbus Dispatch, Ohio resident Helen Chadwell Spaith expressed her gratitude for the hard work that so many service industry employees put in year-round. She wrote that the “selfless actions” of service staffers everywhere “demonstrates why we are here: to love and serve one another…I thank all of the store clerks who have stopped what they were doing to direct us to an item we had been overlooking. I thank the servers who work so very hard all the year through to make our dining experience so enjoyable.”

Denver Restaurant “Not Just An Eatery, It’s A Training Ground” For Employees. A new restaurant in Denver, Colorado, is serving more than just delicious Mexican dishes, reports Liz Gelardi of Denver’s ABC 7. Traditional Mexican eatery Comal is focusing on giving female entrepreneurs job training, language skills, and a foundation for a career in the restaurant industry. The restaurant partners with the Focus Points Family Resource Center to empower women from Globeville and Elyria-Swansea to open their own businesses. Silvia Hernandez, a Comal employee, said of the opportunity, “It’s not books, it’s not reading, you have to do it every day. So it helps me a lot, because when I’m going to open my business, I’m going to be ready.”


Keep up with the Path Forward Coalition by following us on Twitter (@PathFwdWork) and visiting our website. To ensure our biweekly update goes right to your inbox, add newsletter@pathfwd.org to your safe senders list.