Business Review - “Replicate Yourself through Mentoring”

Aug 13, 2020

Award-winning chef Craig Hartman shares in this episode of the Business Review a lesson he learned the hard way — you can’t do it all yourself. 

(New installments of the Business Review are on hold due to Covid-19.  This is a repeat of a previously aired segment.)

Known as one of the country’s top chefs, Craig Hartman used to pride himself on providing the most intricate and artistic culinary creations around. But he realized that success was dependent entirely on his own efforts. To gain freedom from nearly four decades of high-adrenaline, 80-hour workweeks, 

the award-winning chef discovered a way to replicate himself — through mentoring.

“The point hit me that I needed to come up with a better system of doing business that didn’t just rest on my talents only, that I had to train better, I had to create better processes, and I had to empower people to make decisions and to be creative in their own right. And what I found // that day that kind of clicked in my head that we ended up with happier employees, employees that were doing extraordinary things, and I was a lot happier because I got to spend more time with my family, and I became a happier person myself.”

Hartman and his wife prefer the more leisurely pace of their own place, the “barbeque exchange” in central Virginia. But his culinary legacy lives on through his protégées — who now run some of the most highly acclaimed kitchens in the industry. And he couldn’t be more proud.

When they go out, they do great things, they usually will call you up, you know, a few years down the road and say “thank you.” It’s a nice thing to hear them say. It is kind of like being a parent.

The Business Review is a production of KWBU, Livingston & McKay and the Hankamer School at Baylor University.