The Nuts and Bolts of Using Your Transferable Skills in Food Service to Move from a Server Role to a Tech Role

This week on Career Crashers, Joel is diving into how to use your experience and transferable skills in food service and use it to win great opportunities in tech startups. He breaks down some of the key points from the previous episodes in this series with TK Coleman and Kasen Wysong , covering the way to capture and show your skill development and apply it to the job search. Finally, he details how to use Crash to create pitches that will blow companies away and have them eager to interview you!

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Show notes – The Nuts and Bolts of Using Your Transferable Skills in Food Service to Move from a Server Role to a Tech Role

  • Boiling down the latest episodes to actionable steps.
  • Reflect: what transferable skills in food service have I built?
  • Stories: what stories can you tell that can bring this point across?
  • Project: can you prove your skills through a project? E.g. a little Medium/blog post saying “6 things I learned waiting tables.”
  • Testimonial: get one of your regular customers or past supervisors to write you a testimonial.
  • The key: to build momentum and take action.
  • Finding companies: where to look for good places to apply.
  • List: three companies that are exciting to you.
  • Record: a 60sec video pitch to showcase your transferable skills in food service.
  • Finding the person to reach out to: look up the company on LinkedIN and click on “people.”
  • Find the email address: head over to or
  • Apply some or all of these steps and you’ll be well on your way to winning your next job!

Full Transcript: – The Nuts and Bolts of Using Your Transferable Skills in Food Service to Move from a Server Role to a Tech Role

Joel Hey, it’s Joel from Crash. And we are rounding out our January theme of looking to inspire and persuade the good people in the food and beverage industry that perhaps you might want to move into a tech role in, say, a sales or customer success role, and that you do indeed have the necessary transferable skills, the soft skills that can get you up and running in a role like that, and a tech role faster than you might realize. So if you haven’t yet, go back in our podcast feed and check out, in particular, the episodes with TK Coleman, and with Kasen Wysong, and they’re talking about their direct experience, working in the food and beverage industry, and leveraging that into the startup world. There really, truly are so many soft transferable skills in food service like grit, consistency, communication, persuasion, as TK talks about in his episode, the act of being a waiter in and taking care of multiple tables at once, talking to them about what’s on the menu and guiding them through their options and helping to make them happy and feel like they had a win in their order selection. But that’s sales, that’s sales. I want to In this episode, kind of bring it all together, and leave you with some hard actionable nuggets and action steps. For you to put this into a plan. Maybe you recently were let go from your waiter job. And first of all, you know, extending extending my empathy there. Because that’s it’s a hard situation to lose that. And I also as I’ve had a little bit of experience working in food and beverage, I worked at a sub shop and learned a lot there about about customer service. I also just want to express my gratitude for the, for all the people who are working in that industry, who are helping people enjoy meals with friends and family and enjoy wonderful cafe experiences and and to have that service right to have someone take care of you at a restaurant is really a wonderful experience. So shout outs all the good men and women who are doing that have done that. If you’ve been recently let go given the current world situation, or if you’re currently in a position, and currently as a working as a waiter, but you’re looking to potentially transition into the tech and the tech role. This is totally in your hands. So I want to give a few action steps for you to take away and start drilling down. So first things first is to reflect. Think about what you’ve done in your roles. Just take two minutes and say, Okay, what soft skills have I built? Maybe look up a list of transferable skills in food service. Is it that hard work? Is it that empathy skills, communication skills, think about some stories, where you were really crushing it. And a really busy night on a Saturday night, taking care of six tables at once. What did you do well? People want to hear stories. So great chance in your video, you might shoot with crash to tell story. It’s a great chance in any interview you have for a tech role to tell a story about your previous experience and how that matters, right? Can you extract value from your experience and say, and that’s going to apply to a sales role or customer success role? So first things first is to pause, reflect, take out a piece of paper write down a couple stories doesn’t need to be a huge ordeal. But that get that going. Then start thinking about can you get that into a project to create your portfolio? So what we’re teaching that crash is you can become your own credential. You don’t need to rely on a resume, or a third party credential, or degree. You can prove all of that through building some projects through working out loud through a digital footprint we call it. So once you’ve got your little story, couple stories, or some transferable skills in food service that you’ve gained, write about or talk about. You could go to as a concrete action step, go to Create an account and write a little blog post called six skills I learned waiting tables. Right, and just doesn’t need to be perfect. Just write whatever comes to mind tell a couple stories, maybe. The very fact that you would write, the very fact that you would reflect the very fact that you would publish something for the World Wide Web to see is going to help you stand out. And you can take that project. And once you go through Crash, you attach it to a pitch, and you send it to a company and they see, oh, this person’s really thinking about how their skills transfer, oh, this person goes above and beyond this person is creative. Okay, so that’s going to give you some momentum going. You want to build momentum, as you look to, to change jobs or careers. And by the way, this doesn’t need to take that long, maybe you’re in a bit of a pinch, maybe you lost a job recently, you taking care of family, you could turn this around with a couple hours of focus each day, with within as little as a week really depends on how you go about it. We’ve had Crashers when jobs within within a week we’ve had crashes or a crash or when a job within 24 hours. But I think most definitely, you could win a job within a month, if not seven days. But just get the momentum going with your creative spark, right. So you’re thinking about what you’ve done, what transferable skills in food service you’ve developed. Now, just write a little blog post on, now you got something in your portfolio. Okay, now, once you sign up for Crash,, you can sign up for free, you can create a little profile video, you say, Hey, I’m really interested in joining your company, as a customer success representative. This is the profile video is your sort of pitch to the world saying I’m looking to go in this direction, here’s my story. Here’s my strengths. That doesn’t need to take that long, you can do that in a couple takes, just smile and be yourself doesn’t need to be perfect again, you could do that in an hour. And you got a little profile video. Add your post and you have a profile starting to get built out. Now that’s like boom, basics done there. If you want to, you could add some tech tools that you know add, we have the ability to say add, if you know how to use Google Docs or Google Sheets, or if you want to teach yourself some new tech tools like in sales, you might want to learn a CRM customer relationship management system. You can all do that. But that’s not that’s not essential. That’s not essential to bear central should a video, get a project up. Maybe you want to get a testimonial, maybe you want to have you want to have one of your customers. If you know one of your regular customers from a restaurant you’re working at, they could give you a little one to two sentence testimonial, or maybe just a manager past supervisor. They can drop you a line and vouch for your abilities, your work ethic, then you can just put that up on your profile. And that’s going to give you more of that social proof about who you are. So these are some some steps to take. But again, I want to emphasize here that you can get this done real quick. And you don’t need to take every single piece of action that I’m giving you in this episode and do every single one of them. You could just start pitching companies. Just find a company you’re interested in and get to what we call tailored pitching. So I’m talking about again, we’re gonna keep recapping here talking about reflecting on your transferable skills in food service. Right about it on And a little blog post. Sign up for Crash. Shoot a little profile video, maybe add a tech stack. Get a testimonial. These are some action steps. If you just did the video, you didn’t do tech stack you’re still gonna be joining the top 1% of job seekers because you are by listening to this podcast you are in the know you are going to be able to take advantage of first mover advantage most people haven’t found the secret of Crash yet they’re still blasting out resumes but you’re going to turn this all around. I have complete confidence because you know how to crush it and take care of customers in a busy and meaningful work environment and food and beverage industry. So you can turn it around. You can make this happen and get into a tech role. Okay, so I’ve talked about profile video, how you can get started there. If you want to just start pitching. When I say start pitching again, that means sending a custom tailored pitch to a specific company. To a specific company. Now, you might ask, Well, how do I find that company I’ve haven’t really been in the know with startups or Remote Jobs, tech roles. Feeling a little bit overwhelmed, totally understand. Just get some momentum going in this arena as well. What you can do is go to and click on guides and check out the crash guide to startups. And you’ll get some information on how to find active startups. You can go to a site like built in, and see a list of startups and a lot of different cities. Lots of Remote Jobs as well go to Angel list, go to and go to  I do like built in, built in is good. You can see companies and you can see job postings. You see job postings, maybe you’ll find a job posting for customer service customer success representative or sales development representative is a good transferable roles to go from waitstaff into tech role. And it might say, Oh, you need to have a college degree or you need to have this many years experience or XYZ understanding. Ignore all that telling you. What you need to do is prove that you can create value that you’re going to grow, that you’re going to take charge, you’re going to crush it, you’re going to serve people just like you serve people in restaurants, you’re gonna serve customers, yes, serve that company. You’re going to bring your grit and determination, that is going to be your superpower. 92% of companies value soft skills more than hard skills, you got it, you got the soft skills, you got the soft skills, you are in control, you have the power to do anything, if you have the will, I know you have the will. Just three, you don’t need to, you don’t need to think you need to blast out hundreds and hundreds of applications in order to get a new job. That’s the old obsolete way. That’s the, that’s the horse and buggy. We want to jump into the 21st century. And ride in your brand new car, so to speak, and get pitching. Gorget resumes. So when you pitch, you’re going to pick a few companies. A few companies do a little research on and send them a pitch. That’s super creative and something they can’t ignore. Let’s say you picked three companies that are hiring. And as a side note, they don’t have to be hiring, you could pick a company that they’re not officially hiring in a job posting. But if you want to just pick companies that are advertising, you can do that. So you go to three companies that they speak to you they resonate with you. You’re excited about. That’s key, you don’t want to pitch companies that are boring, that don’t resonate with you, it’s not worth it. You want to be able to look into the camera and create a video pitch and smile at the camera with genuine excitement about the company. Now you have those three companies, then pick pick your first company, maybe it’s your, actually your third out of the three in terms of most exciting you have your ranking of one, two and three, start with number three. Because you’re gonna get warmed up here with this pitching process. You’re gonna save your favorite company for the last. Now just take that third company and write down a couple things that you like about them. Maybe you like their product. They’re helping other businesses be more efficient with a certain software they have, and help save people time. And that helps create more space for companies to be more creative and productive. Just think, think about what their product or services, what’s their mission, one of their company values, maybe there, maybe there You read about some reviews about them. And looks like there’s a lot of just pleasant people who work at that company. And there’s some humor involved. There’s, there’s fun happening at that company. Figure out what’s interesting about that company, and then you got a couple bullet points, you’re gonna make a pitch. Your’e gonna hop on your, click New pitch, go in there and shoot in the crash recording studio on the small intro video, your pitch for them. Little 60 second video pitch, and you click record. And the first thing you want to say is, well, first thing you want to do is smile. Remember, you’re gonna smile, because you’re gonna have fun with this, you’re enjoying yourself, you’re doing something innovative and cutting edge creative. To shoot a video and skip the resume, you’re gonna be bold, it’s gonna be awesome, you’re gonna show your, your truest self. Look at that camera and smile, it’s gonna help you relax. When you engage the smiling muscles that just physiologically will help you have more fun and relax and just be yourself. Again, we’re not going to be perfect here. We’re just going to be, we’re just going to be bold and creative, don’t need to have perfection to show who you are. So smile, you say, hey, company x. Look at that camera and smile, it’s gonna help you relax. When you engage the smiling muscles that just physiologically will help you have more fun and relax and just be yourself. Again, we’re not going to be perfect here. We’re just going to be, we’re just going to be bold and creative, don’t need to have perfection to show who you are. So smile, you say, hey, company x. I love your company. For this reason, and that reason. You want to figure out what is exciting about it, and then say, hey, I’d be a great fit, because I know you need someone who’s going to show up and execute cold calls in this sales role. I’ve made 100 expresso shots every single morning when I was working as a barista. I was serving customers and a high powered environment, executing and having an attention to detail to make sure I was getting exactly what the customer wanted. And I hustled and I generated top, I was in the top 5% of baristas, and tip in tip generation, boom, this is why you can be a great fit, because you know, that’s going to transfer to making 100 cold calls. You’re like, I’m going to crush it. And yeah, you’re right, that is my first official sales role. But I’m ready to grow fast and work hard and do the grunt work. You just sell them on your soft skills, right. And then you ask them for 15 minutes, your time of their time to set up an interview. Boom, you got a video pitch recorded, boom, attach that little medium blog post. Publish the pitch. And we’re going to do is we’re going to take that pitch URL, find the email address of someone at that company. You go to, you search the company website. You can find email addresses there. Now how do you figure out who you’re going to send it to? You go on, right, LinkedIn, and you find that company and you click on people, click on people. And then you found maybe there’s a recruiter, there’s a CEO, there’s VP of sales, there’s director of customer experience, find someone that you think’s made good decision maker, but their email, put their name into and find that email address. And then you’re going to take that email address. Go to your email and send them the pitch, say, hey, so excited about your SDR role. I made this little video about why be a great fit two minute video, right one minute video, ask them to click on that, hey, and then just say, hey, I’d love to set a 15 minute call. You don’t have to apply in the job posting. You could if you want and just attach the Crash pitch as your resume. But you can just skip all that and just get the email address and send it to them. Now most likely, they’re gonna reply back pretty quickly because it’s gonna be super awesome. They don’t reply back right away. Just follow up with them every couple days, follow up. Just be polite, but be persistent. every two days you follow up until you hear back. And that’s the basic process. That’s the basic process, the low hanging fruit. This is the quick way to just get this all turned around. Now you can do that with your first companies and you can you get to your second company do that with three companies. And you could get an interview within a couple days. You’re going to get an interview within one day. Doesn’t need to take hours and hours and hours and hours. Again, just sign up for Crash. Get the profile up there. Maybe pick a company. Get that medium posts written attach it to your Crash pitch. Figure out why you love that company. Send them a 60 second video doesn’t have to be perfect. Publish the video, publish the pitch, send it in an email to that company. So a few steps. Yeah, there’s a few steps and all this you can go to That’s see a lot of our blogs about how to do a lot of this stuff. Get reminders. Send me an email for some tips. We’re happy to help you. So hope this has been helpful. Get some, some actionable steps. Just start you’re not going to do everything within you know, 10 minutes to take one step at a time. Right. But you are the theme here is you are in the driver’s seat. You can learn something new, new career. Just start with pausing reflecting on what skills you have. Go back listen to the previous podcast we had this month. TK, Kason with Ron Thurston talking about retail. If you were in that camp, maybe, and get some inspiration, right? You can do this. You can do this. Just start. Start one action at a time. Take the next step and build momentum and it’s gonna be great. Let us know how it goes. Cheers. Isaac Like what you hear? Go to and join the career revolution. Do you want to share your own career crash story? Send it directly to me at If you’ve got a story you’d like to share, don’t hesitate! Email Joel at Joel [at] Crash [dot] co.

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