GUILFORD — Diners have left a huge impression on Garrison Leykam’s life. As an Army brat growing up, Leykam remembers the first time he stepped into a diner in New Rochelle, New York, where his family had decided to set down roots after his father left the military. He has always seen them as centers of the community. “I immediately fell in love with diners,” he said, because these cozy restaurants always helped him feel at home during his years working as a salesperson and being on the road.
It was for that reason, Leykam said, that he decided Shoreline Diner, at 345 Boston Post Road in Guilford, was the perfect place to hold a free career presentation, which will take place June 24 from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
His goal is to help people looking to change careers, find a new job in their field, get promoted, or find work after being unemployed during the pandemic.
Diner owner Nico Anthis said eateries such as his are at a critical point in their history, with owners trying to figure out what they want their restaurants to be. Some aim to be more high-end, while others look to compete with fast-food chains, Anthis said.
“But, for us, we want to be an employer … and we want to have relationships with the community,” he said. “People that live in town, other businesses, we want to support them in any way we can.”
A certified professional career coach, Leykam can help people accomplish their goals through resume writing and coaching.
The pandemic increased the need for this type of coaching tenfold, Leykam said. “When COVID hit, the job market was affected; unemployment was affected,” he said, adding the situation also caused people to question their job security.
Many people need help figuring out how to apply for jobs, Leykam said, and he is ready to provide expertise. As the pandemic wanes, many people need help looking for, and getting, jobs. “It’s really all about giving back.”
Leykam hopes attendees will see that diners are not just places to eat, but also as a resource, as well as realize how vital businesses such as the Shoreline Diner are to the community.
“On an immediate level, for the people who come, my goal is that they walk away with skills they were unaware of,” he said. “Or they learn how to do something they didn’t know how to do.” He also will teach older people how to “age-proof” their resume, by picking and choosing what to feature.
Leykam wants to keep the presentation informal, and, although he has a PowerPoint prepared, he wants people to feel comfortable asking questions specific to their lives.
Because food is his specialty, Anthis said, that is frequently the way his business can support the community. He’ll be baking macarons for the event.
“Maybe we’ll have somebody who wants to work here,” Anthis said, joking.
People will be coming to the diner on the 24th to figure out how to reinvent themselves for the job market, but the diner is also looking to find what its next iteration will be, Leykam said. “It’s an interesting, parallel dynamic.”
Article written by Josh LaBella / Hearst Connecticut Media
About Garrison Leykam, PhD:
- Certified Business Coach (Expert Level)
- Certified Remote Work Professional
- Certified Professional Career Coach (CPCC)
- Certified Professional, Résumé Writer (CPRW)
- Certified Employment Interview Professional (CEIP)
- Certified Life Coach (Expert Level)
- PhD Marketing, MA Psychology
- LinkedIn profile in Top 25 MA, PhD profiles in U.S.
- Top 1% LinkedIn Industry Social Selling Index
- Author, Audacious at Any Age and Design You