Wednesday, August 9, 2017

You're Asking Me To Do What?

You're Asking Me To Do What?
by Nicholas Ashton, CEO/CIO, CommSmart Global Group

The social environment of our streets has dramatically changed in an extremely negative manner!

When a call for assistance is made to 911, dispatchers answer and are now concerned if this is a genuine call or a possible trap for the responding officers. The 'Fear Factor' is understandable and justified.  

San Diego Police department suffered in this series of senseless murders. 2 officers have been shot and 1 is dead.  They never knew what they were walking into and still responded to the call and one so far paid with their life.

A traffic stop which changed and resulted in gunfire. 

There is no other job in the world that has this type of workload.  Responding to the unknown and with only the information which started with a 911 call from a member of a community who needs assistance or a simple traffic stop.

These are more than troubling times and you ask officers working the streets, who are blind to information and have to react in split seconds to whatever happens.  Can you understand the mindset of officers and why they are continually on edge?

This is not normality!  The stress factor is huge!  No wonder some are asking more questions prior to sending officers.

All information is key and that is why analytics make a radical difference. 

Knowing where the call has come from, any similar calls previously, type of call, the use of certain words within the call.  All are important and we have the ability to have that information at an officers fingertips.

Information analytics is our business and can be in place in a matter of weeks and saving lives.

USA:  (330) 366.6860 or (515) 300.630

copyright 2016

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Americana, Des Moines Is Not What You Find in the Urban Dictionary!

Americana, Des Moines Is Not What
You Find in the Urban Dictionary!
By Nicholas Ashton, CEO/CIO, CommSmart Global Group



‘things associated with the culture and history of America, especially the United States.’

Stop! It is not about flags, fine landscapes, open roads, front porches, rocking chairs, milk churns or American jeans!

It is all about ‘FOOD’! 

Americana’s web site states:
‘A Buzzing American restaurant & bar serving salad, pasta & sandwiches & brunch in contemporary digs’.

They tell no lies, fibs, or to us ‘Brit’s, no ‘Pork Pies’ (lies).

It starts with a phone call at 10 a.m., they had been open only thirty minutes in my attempt to get reservations.  There were none!  Although informed of at least a thirty-minute wait, there will be some seats at the bar.

I do not like waiting in line or queuing, especially for food, as I believe there is no food worth waiting for that long.

Hunger on this Sunday morning was knocking at my door, so to heck with it, we left, walked the six-minute stroll to the Americana and with my own eyes, saw the mass attraction was already full to the brim as we walked in.  

Nudging a passage with my British elbows to the check-in desk, I stated I have no reservation but apparently you have seats at the bar, the young lady pointed to the far side of the bar.  Naturally, we shuffled quickly and found an amazing corner area that looked so private, it was cool with a darkened ambiance, and ‘of you should not really be there look’!

A bartender, (Jamie) came over explained the ‘Brunch Routine’, telling us we were sitting in the ‘Honey Area’, whatever that means!  The menu even includes a map for where all the food is located.  Importantly, the ‘Bloody Mary’ area, which you must not miss, it is right next door to the Mimosa bar which has so many variations fruits to flavor your Champagne!

I thought I might need GPS, but never even dived for my Smartphone!

Their pricing is cool, $18 or so per person, which is all you can eat or stuff into your mouth with drinks extra.  Or $30, which includes all of your Bloody Mary’s and Mimosa’s.  You do not have to choose right away and they will price your intake accordingly!

Now, I always start at the salad bar, if you like, I believe you need that fresh ‘rabbit food’.  Incredible, simple and tasty.  It also gives you an idea of where all the food is if you don’t take the road map with you. 

People, it was packed and you had strict instructions not queue jump or barge in front of anyone.  You know, an orderly formation of a line whilst your stomach tells you your throat has been cut and you are desperate for food. Whilst the food aromas are tempting your nostrils.

Passing by the Toasted Cheese Sandwich station, I nearly diverted but kept my course to the main food line.  If I told you that the aroma of bacon was wafting through the building at a level of toxicity, I would not be telling ‘Pork Pies’, remember (lies).  The line was moving a little faster than a line is Disney World as we shuffled toward the excellently laid out food.  They have concentrated on the ‘breakfast’ side of brunch, so do not expect slabs of beef, after all. Iowa is famous for its pork. Get the message?

The plates were being filled to overload without sirens!  Even a ‘Mac & Cheese’ and potato bar were front and center.  Yes, a true brunch of magical proportions.

Now back to the ‘Honey Area’, digging in, (Jamie) brought another Bloody Mary starter.  Starter?  Yes, you now go over to the Bloody Mary station and add mix, the way you like it, with their Tomato mix, which has some bite to it, or just plain old tomato juice.  The same with the Mimosa’s, all with different fruit juices.  I was in 7th Heaven, devouring the plate of food which was dominated with a little bit of bacon!

I had left some food on the plate, making room for other gastronomic delights which were tempting me.  I felt guilty of leaving good food, (Maddie) the other bar tender, I think that was her name, and you know, three strong Bloody Mary’s later, who remembers names when food is the top priority! The wonderful young lady informed us that all leftover food goes to the homeless shelter on both days of the Brunch, yes, even available on Saturdays!

The desserts were great and I never got to the Grilled Cheese Sandwich bar, which apparently is to die for! (Next time!)

Our Americana Brunch experience was not just the food, which I cannot stop talking about, it was the overall customer service aspect as well.  Our bar team served us well, made us welcome, made sure all glasses were always filled, plates cleared away and great conversations.  In fact, every one of the Americana team was more than just wait staff, they are an important part of a dining experience which will be a regular event in your life!

I Promise, this American Brunch is in my top five of brunches globally.  No, it did serve slices of beef in strange sounding sauces or even white glove service.  It was a true part of simple America, people enjoying basic favorites with a touch of down home tastes.  I am no food critic, nor do I trust food critics, I know what I like and so will you. 

Oh, you will find me in the ‘Honey Area’ of the bar, but don’t tell anyone about it, let’s keep it among ourselves if you know what I mean…

Telephone: (515) 300.6130

Copyright 2017