CDM of the Month

Dennis Bryant


Name: Dennis Bryant, CDM, CFPP

Job Title: Patient Services Manager

Employer: Morrison Healthcare

Job Location: Tallahassee, Florida

Years at Current Facility: 3 months (Morrison Healthcare 13 years)

Years in Current Position: 3 months

CDM Since: 2002

Why did you decide to become a CDM?

I came from restaurants, hotels and a casino. I knew zero about Healthcare. My Regional Director of Operations suggested I pursue a CDM.

What are your main responsibilities in your current position?

I am responsible for the hiring, onboarding, training and discipline of a TEAM that consists of Trayline Servers, Floor Stockers and Catering Associates to deliver the meals to Patients.

How do you organize your time at work to make sure you accomplish all your responsibilities?

I make a list each day. I learned very early in my career this was the best system for me. Add some easy things to keep you moving through the list along with harder projects. Anything left from that day MUST be at the top of the next day’s list and be completed first.

What is an example of an innovative way you have made change at your facility and how did you implement it?

I find with Morrison Healthcare all the tools are available to me. My job here was to put those programs in place. First to explain the changes to the TEAM, then to implement the changes, and then to follow-up with the TEAM.. 

What was your first job in the foodservice industry?

Cook at A&W Root Beer!!!!!! Best job ever. Mostly high school friends working there. We made Root Beer all day long and since you could not save it over night we were allowed to take home what was left at close. My mom and brother loved that.

Who has been your biggest mentor in foodservice and how have they helped shape your career?

Two people. My mom, Anita C. Bryant, because she fell and broke her kneecap and I saw how bad the foodservice provided to her was. This motivated me to find a career where I could help people who couldn’t do things for themselves. And Philip Goldman, who taught me how to be a professional and a businessman.

What are the biggest challenges you face in your position and how do you handle them?

Just like everyone else, it is staffing. I start out with the simple premise that if you don’t come in with a smile, you fail. I can teach you everything about the job but I can’t teach you how to be cheerful about your day. Between drug tests and background checks, it is difficult sometimes but I will interview 15 to get 3 if I have too. It is my investment to the TEAM.

What is your favorite part of your job?

Taking care of people who are in a situation where they have little control. I try to be that time in their day that they can relax from the tests, shots, nursing checks, and all the things associated with being in the hospital.

How do you stay up to date with current innovations and trends?

I read four newspapers a day, as well as magazines like Edge. Morrison Healthcare does a great job of keeping our chefs trained and informed.

How do you envision the foodservice industry in the next few years?

I think that people are going to be looking for more innovative foods. Sandwiches can no longer be turkey and american cheese on a hamburger bun. It needs to have a creative sauce or spread. It needs to look great. We spent more on meals because we expected more from our meals and now we expect you to keep it up.

What is your advice to those just getting started in the foodservice industry?

Find something that isn’t work. If you don’t like it – get out early! I went to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio for Social Work. I delivered pizza to pay for school. Then I got a manager role in that restaurant. 40 years later here I am. I absolutely LOVE what I do!!!!!!!!!!!!