April 24, 2014

Cleveland Magazine's Silver Spoon Awards

‘Tis the season for Cleveland Magazine's Silver Spoon Awards: “The May issue of Cleveland Magazine presents Northeast Ohio’s “Best Restaurants” with the Silver Spoon Award in a variety of categories.” What a great excuse to write about one of my favorite topics: food!  Not just food for fuel of course – food for fun and for the experience of it.  While the Silver Spoon Awards comprise the whole Greater Cleveland area, I thought I’d start us out in University Circle.  There are so many fantastic places right here to dine, eat, nosh, or however you want to call it.  The weather is breaking into spring, and my hope is that this post will give you some food for thought on where you should head next.

Here would be my University Circle categories and nominees:

Best Casual:
Patio of L'Albatros Brasserie
Falafel Café – This diner-like restaurant serves an array of flavorful Middle Eastern dishes, and American options as well.  I recommend the Taste of the Middle East and a piece of baklava and Turkish coffee for dessert.

Best Fine Dining:
L’Albatros – This brasserie has classy décor, gourmet French dishes, stellar service, fine wine and a grand cheese selection.  Need I say more?

Best à la Carte:
Provenance Café in the Museum of Art – From piping hot mac’n cheese to made-to-order salads, this café’s open kitchen serves a locally sourced, seasonal menu.

Best view:
Provenance Café in the Museum of Art – The bright, open Atrium has grandeur not unlike Severance Hall.  The space feels both indoor and outdoor and, situated in the museum, it draws a diverse crowd.

Best patio:
Dessert at Coquette Patisserie
l’Albatros – Their secluded courtyard is full of sunshine and greenery.
The Jolly Scholar – Their patio is a casual oasis that is synonymous with summertime.

Best dessert:
Mitchell’s Ice Cream – It’s my favorite ice cream, and I recently discovered that slightly melted vegan chocolate ‘ice cream’ tastes remarkably like chocolate mousse.

Coquette Patisserie – Their beautiful pastries are as delightful to look at as they are to eat.  The macarons are something special, whether for breakfast, an afternoon pick-me-up or a light dessert.  They also make a great gift.

April 11, 2014

Negotiating a job offer

Negotiating a job offer including salary and compensation are probably areas that we can all use some help with. Professor Roman Sheremeta provides us with several strategies and resources to practice and use during any salary or compensation negotiation with an employer.

Negotiating has two main components: distributive and integrative. A distributive negotiation is one where parties compete over a fixed pool of value. In this case your goal is to take the largest piece of the pie possible. This results in a win-lose situation for one of the parties. In the case of salary negotiation, you should try to make sure that you are not on the losing end.


An integrative negotiation is one where there is potential for both parties’ interests to be integrated and result in a larger pie. The focus of this type of a negotiation is on the underlying interests that are often shared between parties. This will result in a win-win situation where all opportunities are exploited and nothing is ‘left on the table’.


Most job negotiations have a win-win potential!


Here are Professor Sheremeta’s tips for preparing for a job negotiation:
  1.  Self-assessment: determine your BATNA or your best alternative to a negotiated agreement
  2. Assess the other party: learn as much as you can about the employes, research the employer’s BATNA
  3. Assess the situation
  4. Present yourself: provide information about your interests and priorities
  5. Assume that the offer is negotiable, don’t ask permission! 
How do you capitalize on the win-win negotiation?
  1.  Negotiate multiple issues simultaneously, don’t get stuck on salary
  2. Don’t rush the offer, build a long-run relationship
There are several other issues to consider besides salary when negotiating a job offer:
  • Compensation: salary, bonus, stock/equity
  • Retirement: 401k, savings plans
  • Additional benefits such as: vacation, sick days, insurance, moving expenses, transportation