Kathy Gallant, the owner of the Blue Moon Market & Cafe in Exeter, NH, had run this successful health food store and cafe for 12 years when she recognized it was time for the next phase of the business’ evolution. Last October, the doors re-opened as Blue Moon Evolution, a full-service restaurant featuring organic, locally-grown foods. With delicious food, great service and positive reviews, the business was soon thriving. Though Kathy realized, as a leader, she needed to shift from “driving the bus” to having her full team feel engaged in the vision of what the restaurant could be.
New Directions Collaborative facilitated a staff retreat with about 20 employees to help make this transition. The team shared stories of what works well and what attracts them to working there. Then, staff from all parts of the restaurant worked in small groups to brainstorm ideas on what additional ways they could make the restaurant more sustainable and successful. Their enthusiasm for the mission was infectious and when their ideas were shared in the full group you could feel their excitement and commitment. Kathy emailed after the meeting, “It was so freeing to watch the process unfold. My team has literally been buzzing with excitement ever since.”