Featured in the August 2023 Issue
  • Partner's Perspective: From Kitchen Chaos to Corporate Cuisine: Lessons in Change from The Bear
  • Empowering Young Entrepreneurs: Theresa Carli Pontieri's Role in the Children's Business Fair
  • Blog Highlights
  • Curiosities, Ruminations and Various Eccentricities of Firm Biz
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Charles B. Jimerson - From Kitchen Chaos to Corporate Cuisine: Lessons in Change from The Bear
Every company that has ever known scaled success can show you a scorecard in balance sheet form that proves the price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change. It is perfectly healthy for businesses to change their processes while keeping to their principles, the same way that it is healthy for trees to change their leaves while leaving their roots intact. Of all places, this “change is the law of life” philosophy really connected with me as I was COVID-induced, insomnia-vitalized binging a relatively new TV show called The Bear produced by FX and now streaming on Hulu.

I’ll try to table set without ruining your meal. The Bear tells the story of Michelin-rated fine-dining chef who returns home as the prodigal son to save his family’s failing Chicago sandwich shop, The Original Beef, in the wake of his brother’s untimely death. The show focuses on showing off chaotic kitchen life and the intense sacrifices required by career culinary professionals in order to fill bellies and generate customer grins. Having spent many of my teen years busting arse to supply each treasured order that my customers submitted, I related to the pick-and-shovel plight of sweaty kitchen superintendence. The show brought me back in time to the interesting characters you meet in the fiery cauldron of the restaurant industry’s bustling kitchen. Some places I worked at were junkyards, others were transfer stations, and only a couple were show floors. Like anything else in life, the people make it or break it. The Bear delivered on this keynote, for each kitchen worker inevitably comes with a gripping and sometimes woeful backstory, making for unique ingredients in the cultural melting pot of kitchen life. The strength of the brigade lies in their differences, not in their similarities. The Bear reminded me of so many people I knew and have forgotten (only 40% unintentionally).

Kitchen life is wild, man. You shuffle stations while shuffling stations. Making meals, in real life or on film in The Bear, is intoxicating theater where passion, sweat, and the occasional expletive blend to create the magic that graces plates. In the wild dance of the kitchen, where pans sizzle and tempers flare, kitchen workers are the acrobats of adaptation, the chameleons of change. Like nimble tightrope walkers, they navigate the delicate balance between chaos and creativity, twirling through the storm of last-minute orders and unexpected substitutions. Flexibility is their secret sauce, and adaptability their finest garnish. With a dash of humor and a dollop of resilience, they embrace the whirlwind of a peak rush, relying largely on their bred-in-the-bone routines and blueprints. That’s the paradox that The Bear captures so well, and the datum of the show that resonated well with my former service industry worker, now current service industry worker mind. The show focuses heavily on the aspect of change management, exemplifying how even those most capable of reacting to environmental change around them can resist changes inveterate to their constitution. In other words, people can be open to changes that affect them, but closed to changes that remake them. That makes sense to me now, but that enlightenment has come from a lot of trips around the sun, many of which flew too close to it. As The Bear eventually shows, you can lead people to change without changing who they are. Their trees can fill out without uprooting.

In business, embarking on an organizational transformation is akin to crafting an exquisite dish – it requires precision, vision, and a touch of innovation. Inspired by the change management metaphors that potbellied The Bear, I’ve attempted to put together a cookbook recipe for a ten-course meal that will elevate your change management strategy to new heights. In doing so, I avoided the temptation to spoil your meals with a show reference as a case in point. But, if any of you would like to further discuss techniques or steps of the following change management paradigm in the context of The Bear, for growth or just for sport, I invite you to break bread with me after you’ve finished your binge. 

Change Management Process Menu

  • Course One: Visionary Aperitif- Just as a chef creates a signature dish, define a compelling vision for your transformation. This vision serves as the flavorful base, infusing purpose into every action. Share the ‘why’ behind the change to engage and inspire your team, just as a chef’s passion elevates their cuisine.
  • Course Two: Agile Adaptation Amuse-Bouche- Like a chef tailoring their menu, embrace agility and Agile methods in your change strategy. Break your initiatives into manageable courses, adapting to evolving circumstances. This flexibility allows you to tailor your approach in response to feedback, like a chef adjusting recipes based on diner preferences.
  • Course Three: Data-Driven Entrée- Just as a chef refines flavors, leverage data-driven insights to refine your strategy. Analyze the ‘tasting notes’ of your initiatives through metrics, guiding your decisions. This analysis ensures your transformation maintains its intended flavor and aligns with organizational goals.
  • Course Four: Empowerment Soufflé- A Michelin star chef nurtures their team’s talents – a principle you can apply. Invest in employee growth, akin to training sous-chefs. Empower your workforce through skill development, inspiring ownership and innovation throughout the transformation journey. You will not serve change dishes without servant leaders.
  • Course Five: Transparent Communication Tartare- Imagine an open kitchen – a hub of transparent communication. Create a culture of open dialogue, fostering collaboration and trust. Like chefs coordinating amidst sizzling pans, ensure all voices are heard, aligning your team’s efforts toward success. Communication works for those who work at it.
  • Course Six: Change Champion Consommé- Craft a network of change champions, like sous-chefs championing dishes. These advocates amplify the transformation’s impact, much like a sous-chef’s expertise elevates the dining experience. They become ambassadors, inspiring others to embrace the change.
  • Course Seven: Milestone Celebration Sorbet- Celebrate milestones as a chef celebrates culinary achievements. Like a chef presenting a masterful dish, recognize accomplishments with flair. These gastronomic celebrations boost morale and foster an atmosphere of achievement.
  • Course Eight: Resilience Risotto- Just as a chef refines recipes after setbacks, learn from challenges without losing your essence. Develop flavors of resilience, using setbacks to refine your approach. This resilience ensures your transformation remains robust and adaptable.
  • Course Nine: Leadership Fusion- Picture a harmonious kitchen led by a head chef. Align senior leadership, mirroring the unity in a kitchen brigade. Cohesion at the top guides the team, creating a seamless transformation process.
  • Course Ten: Feedback Infusion Finale- Incorporate feedback like a chef’s tasting panel. Regularly gather insights from stakeholders, just as a chef listens to diners. This feedback loop guides refinements, maintaining alignment with your transformation goals.

Savor these gastronomic-inspired courses to create a transformational feast that resonates with your organization’s appetite for change. Much like a Michelin star chef curates an unforgettable dining journey for patrons, and a field guide for the cooks, your transformational menu will leave a lasting imprint on your organization’s future. As The Bear shows, clarity can eventually come from chaos if you manage change with method.

For those of you running teams or businesses contemplating changes, look to Churchill’s quote on change as dispositive: “to improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.” If anything is certain, it is that change is certain. The world we are planning for today will not exist in this form tomorrow. Change before you have to. Your only security will be your ability to change.

The world hates change, yet it is the only thing that has brought progress. Does that sound like a coincidence to you? What comes easy won’t last, what lasts won’t come easy. Power through it, surprise yourselves, and remember that people don’t resist change, they resist being changed. Their stress is their fear coming out, so make them fearless.

If you haven’t tangled with the change bear yet, I encourage you to eat before you get eaten. If you haven’t tried The Bear yet, I encourage you to make a reservation. Bon Appétit!
Very Truly Yours,
Charles B. Jimerson
Managing Partner
Empowering Young Entrepreneurs: Theresa Carli Pontieri's Role in the Children's Business Fair
A true embodiment of meaningful and enduring partnership, the Hammock Community Center recently hosted a Children's Business Fair in collaboration with Maria Delgado of Culinary Wellness and Acton Academy. Young vendors, as young as 6, took center stage, showcasing their creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.

Theresa Carli Pontieri, an attorney at Jimerson Birr and a Palm Coast City Council member, played a pivotal role in the event. She presented certificates for categories such as "Most Business Potential," "Most Original Idea," and "Best Presentation at the Children’s Business Fair," underlining Jimerson Birr's commitment to fostering community growth.

From handmade jewelry to henna tattoos, the fair's diverse offerings underscored the innovative capacity of our youth. This event not only celebrated young talents but also exemplified the power of collaboration and mentorship in line with Theresa Carli Pontieri and Jimerson Birr's core values. As the fair concluded on a high note, it's clear that investing in the potential of young entrepreneurs today ensures a vibrant entrepreneurial landscape tomorrow.
Jimerson Birr Legal Blogs
Are you keeping up with the latest information in business and law? Jimerson Birr publishes weekly blog posts covering topics from construction law, real estate development, sales and leasing law, banking and financial services law, community association law, and everything in between. Click here to subscribe today and stay up-to-date on the latest legal news from the industries we serve:
Real Estate Development, Sales and Leasing Industry Legal Blog
Unfortunately, it is all too common for rental property owners in Florida, especially elderly rental property owners, to be taken advantage of by potential tenants when negotiating leases. This generally occurs when the prospective tenant has a prior relationship with the owner that allows the tenant to gain trust from the owner. Once trust is established between the parties, the tenant is able to negotiate very friendly, and occasionally, unlawful lease provisions such as free rent and/or a lease term with an undefined term. This blog will help to explain how Florida courts have interpreted such situations.

Click here to read the full blog post.
When two parties enter into a contract for the purchase and sale of real property, both parties intend to close on the sale of the property. However, there are times where the seller refuses to sell the property to the buyer. What happens then? What rights does the buyer have to force the seller to close and to sell the property to the buyer?

This article seeks to explore these questions and evaluates the language in the most common forms of purchase and sale agreements.

Click here to read the full blog post.
Professional Services Industry Legal Blog
Severance agreements and releases outlining the terms of separation, including financial compensation, benefits continuation, and other provisions, have utility for both employers and employees when ending an employment relationship. For employers, it is crucial to understand how a signed release can impact potential employee claims brought after termination of employment. In this blog post, we will examine the implications of (i) the general rule that releases cannot prohibit employees from pursing administrative remedies and (ii) a couple notable cases, Santana v. Stuart A. Miller, 314 So.3d 346 (Fla. 3d DCA 2020) and Frattallone v. Black Diamond Coating, Inc., No. 8:14–cv–2818–T–33TBM, 2015 WL 476193 (M.D. Fla. Feb. 5, 2015), which evaluate an employer’s ability to enforce a release against an employee to prevail in a lawsuit. In sum, employers will better understand the utility of severance agreements and where they have an impact on an employer’s potential liability after reading this blog post.

Click here to read the full blog post.
Winning the lottery is undoubtedly a life-altering event. However, with this newfound wealth comes an unwanted spotlight, as lottery winnings are often a target of lawsuits, creditors, scams, and sometimes even friends and family seeking financial assistance or investment opportunities. This blog highlights five compelling asset protection strategies tailored for lottery winners. These strategies offer valuable insights on effectively safeguarding and managing lottery winnings.

Click here to read the full blog post.
Firm News
Curiosities, Ruminations and Various Eccentricities of Firm Biz
Congratulations to our Partners - recognized as The Best Lawyers in America®!
We are thrilled to announce that four of our exceptional law partners have been recognized in the prestigious 30th edition of The Best Lawyers in America®! This recognition is a testament to their unwavering dedication, unparalleled expertise, and commitment to delivering outstanding legal solutions.

Congratulations to Charles B. Jimerson, Joby O. Birr, Austin T. Hamilton, and C. Ryan Maloney for being named among the top 5% of legal talent in private practice across the United States. Their remarkable achievements have earned them a well-deserved spot in this exclusive group.
Jimerson Birr Honored as One of Florida's Best Companies to Work for the Ninth Consecutive Year
Jimerson Birr, a leading Florida-based business law firm, is proud to announce its recognition as one of the Best Companies to Work for in Florida 2023 by Florida Trend Magazine. This marks the firm's ninth consecutive year of receiving this prestigious honor, further solidifying its commitment to fostering an exceptional workplace environment.

Florida Trend Magazine's "Best Companies to Work for" competition, endorsed by the HR Florida State Council, celebrates organizations prioritizing employee satisfaction and engagement. The program evaluates workplace policies, practices, demographics, and conducts confidential employee surveys to recognize the top 100 companies creating exceptional work cultures.
August JB FOR ME Highlight Reel
JB's dedication to honoring mental health awareness took shape through in-office massages by Massology, providing rejuvenating experiences for employees. As colleagues embraced this moment of self-care, it highlighted the importance of a balanced mind as the cornerstone of personal and professional success. This eventful pause underscored JB's commitment to nurturing mental well-being as a part of our employee commitment.
Laughter and the aroma of toasted marshmallows filled the air at Jimerson Birr as we playfully celebrated National S'mores Day. From breakroom banter to shared smiles, our workplace embraced the nostalgic charm of these gooey treats. With melting chocolate and graham crackers weaving their magic, colleagues couldn't resist doubling down on the indulgence—proof that at Jimerson Birr, great work and great times go hand in hand!
Ice Cream Sandwich Day was a delightful journey through flavors, as we savored a variety of frozen delights. From timeless classics like chocolate and vanilla to unique options such as Reese's, Oreos, M&M-studded, and chocolate chip, our taste buds enjoyed a diverse selection. With each bite, we celebrated the joy of different tastes, adding a touch of sweetness to our exceptional workplace culture.
Click here to learn about our award-winning Firm Culture.

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