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Carving out a niche in the celebrity chef stratosphere

Carving out a niche in the celebrity chef stratosphere

Running multiple restaurants requires masterful organization – and iconoclast chef Russell Jackson has the list-making skills to do it successfully.

“Post-it® Super Sticky Notes, for me, are the most straightforward ‘hammer and nail’ tool in my life. I’m a hard-core tech guy – but in the end, as a creative person, I need that tactile method of putting my mind into gear.”

- Russell Jackson

  • If you’re a food fan, you’ve likely seen Russell Jackson on TV cooking on Iron Chef America, or perhaps competing on The Next Food Network Star. Russell has been cooking professionally for 35 years, having run several highly successful restaurants, and launching his SubCulture underground dining venture. An iconoclast in the food world, Russell never rests, and always has multiple things cooking – as a busy chef and even busier business owner, he’s learned, over time, how to become a master list-maker with the help of Post-it® Products.

    It wasn’t always that way. In his youth, Russell was a horrible list-maker and planner – but as he began to focus on his goals, Russell trained himself to think in a different way to be able to generate lists and to be effective. Today, Russell’s inspiration thrives when he begins with Post-it® Super Sticky Notes. His creativity comes alive when he’s able to move things around in the physical plane – and he does so dramatically, by using a floor-to-ceiling window in his loft as a massive idea board. When Russell finishes this kind of “brain dump” – whether it’s for planning a menu, a new restaurant concept or business plan – he meticulously archives every single Post-it® Super Sticky Note in envelopes for future reference. This free-flowing ideation technique is great for landing on big ideas, but for those everyday goals that need accomplishing, Russell also uses Post-it® List Notes to help break down those goals into specific, manageable categories and tasks.

    Russell Jackson Shopping

  • For big projects that require collaboration, such as planning his appearance on Iron Chef America, Russell turns to Post-it® Easel Pads. For Iron Chef, Russell and his chefs used Post-it® Easel Pads to plan multiple menus, pumping out ideas and thoughts under three general categories of potential secret ingredients that would be used in the competition. 

    For the day-to-day operations of his many kitchens and businesses, Russell leans heavily on Post-it® Flags and Post-it® Tabs. “Flags and Tabs are a part of my everyday life,” he says. “There isn’t a piece of paper I have in my business folder that doesn’t have Flags or Tabs on it!”

    Russell Jackson's list making tips

  • Russell's list making tips:

    • Clarity of mind. Don't get bogged down in needing all the answers right away – Post-it® Products are there to facilitate that.
    • Take action — a little bit every day. Russell sometimes starts with his Post-it® Dry Erase Surface, jots a big idea at the top, and then sticks ideas every day on Post-it® Super Sticky Notes underneath, where he can move them around, re-think and re-organize.

    Russell’s passion for lists runs deep - almost as deep as his passion for food and cooking. "For anything, there's two very pragmatic things you have to do: The nuts-and-bolts planning, and the creative work,” Russell says. “Ultimately, it all starts with the list. What is it that you want, or where do you want to go? Then, how do you get there? Without being able to generate that list, you’re walking in circles ... I have to create my roadmap, which is that list. To accomplish all the goals I’ve dreamed of, I couldn’t have done any of this without these Post-it® Products."

    "I'm not happy if I'm not cooking for somebody."

    Want to learn more about your productivity style? Find out your list-making style.

  • Russell is a chef, restaurateur and television personality best known for both Bravo’s Going Off The Menu and as a finalist on Food Network’s Next Food Network Star. He is also the creator of PopFoodsTV, a web series that focuses on the conversation, education and fun that surrounds food. Chef Jackson is the founder of SubCulture Dining (SCD), a bi-coastal underground dining club that focuses on sensible ingredients and remains active in Russell’s home state of California and his new home, New York. With more than 30 restaurant launches behind him, the success of SCD and his media work, Russell still finds time to give back and is an active Board Member at WHEDCo.org.  

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