Milagros Mexican Food Utah and BYU Football Chain Gang

It’s rare not to see me in the kitchen on busy weekends, working among the spicy aromas of a Mexican Food kitchen.  However, there is one event that allows me to take a break… BYU Football.  I don’t attend in the usual manner, as a spectator, but as a member of the “Chain Gang.”

(For those who don’t know what that is… it’s the “Chain crew” who are assistance to the officials. They handle the first down measuring chain.)

Running the BYU Football “Chain Gang”, as I have done for the past 8 years,  is something I always look forward too.

It’s a privilege to know all the coaches, but they usually associate me with their last great Mexican Food feast.  And, since Jackson Danger and I cater lunch for the team during spring ball, most of the players associate me with wearing an apron, not black and white stripes.

I miss much of the game that the spectators in the bleachers see.  However,  I see, hear and sometime feel things, by standing with my shoes on the out-of-bounds grass, that the fans never see or experience.

Sometimes the “Chain Gang” will switch sides of the field at half time.  I find it interesting to be on the opposing team’s side of the field and watch how the other team manages the game…how their coaches react under pressure, how they inspire (or not) their players.  I also get to observe how the team members, and coaches support each other (or not).

It seems that each teach team creates it’s own “Culture.”  The head coach creates the “Culture” that defines a team and usually the outcome of the game.  For instance, The “Culture” of Bronco Mendenhall is certainly different than that of past coach, LaVell Edwards.

In some ways, competing in football is similar to running a business.

I once had the opportunity to have dinner with the CFO of Costco.  I told him how fascinated I was with how massive his company was, and yet they all had the same look and feel.  His answer… “Culture!”  It’s creating an environment where everyone thinks and performs the way I do.”

Witnessing positive “Culture” on the field as well as seeing very negative “Culture”, which results in very negative teams, has impacted my own business decisions.

Working the “Chains” has helped me become a better motivator, and the creator of a “Culture” at Milagros… that I hope is beneficial to my employees and is reflected to our customers.

I want Milagros employees to be happy at work. And we want our guests to feel comfortable and enjoy the best Mexican Food in Utah.

And… last… but not least… the “Chain Gang” has helped me to be alert, and fast in diving out of the way when a pile of 300 pound football players, in helmets, charge toward me.

Milagros means Miracles!

Dave Tuomisto

P.S.  Do you Tweet?  If so… follow me by clicking on the floating Twitter Bird in the right side bar.  Then,  add the hashtag #BYUfootball and join the conversation.