The Top 4 Characteristics of Food People (And What They Mean For Your Career) Part 1 of 4

There’s something I’ve noticed about the food people who contact me: they've got a lot in common with one another (and with me, too). 

I guess it’s hardly surprising that a group of people who are passionate about a certain topic are similar to one another.

Still, I find it pretty amazing that I see the same group of traits surfacing over and over and over again.

In part, I think these traits are some of the characteristics that lead us to working in food. Often they work in our favor: they function as strengths that enable us to follow our dreams, take risks, make lasting connections. 

Some of them, though, create a bunch of challenges it’s easy to get tripped up by.

So, without further ado, here is the first of four characteristics most common to the food lovers I work with (I'll be writing about the other three in the next three weeks. Don't forget to come back and find out what they are!):

#1: Food people are people-people.

I guess it should come as no surprise that we’re all people-people (that’s the plural of people-person, in case I lost you). I mean, after all, why care about food at all if you don’t want to use it to nourish and nurture people, heal people and our environment, and tell people’s stories?

Food people are generally excellent collaborators, connectors, helpers, teachers, coaches, and nurturers.

You’re probably a warm, thoughtful, social type who uses food as a tool to communicate with others in your life and in your community. You may be very serious about the work you want to do in the world and how you’d like it to impact others. That said, you don't take yourself too seriously. You probably pride yourself on your sense of humor, and you sure know how to have a good time.  Celebration and ritual are important to you. You like laughing and making people laugh, and you want to enjoy that levity in your working environment.

These are all good things, right? I’d say so.

But wait, every good thing comes with a challenge, and being a people-person is no exception:

Do you care too much about what others think? Do you always defer to the opinions of your co-workers, your supervisors, your partner, your parents, or your friends, even if you don’t really agree? Do you have a tough time saying no? Do you always give yourself the credit you deserve?

So, am I right? Does this resonate with you? Are you a people person? If so (and, also if not) it’s time to start thinking about how your style of interacting with others affects your career choices. Think about how you interact in life and at work.  Does your job allow you to engage with others in a way that you enjoy?

Leave your thoughts and questions in the comments below and share some ways that being a people-person has impacted your career (both for the better and for the worse). And if you liked this post, please share it.

Want to work with me 1:1? Start here.

Emily Halpern