280: Be Honest & True to Yourself with Hari Pulapaka



Hari was born and raised in the bustling metropolis of Mumbai, India. He came to the United States in 1987 to pursue graduate studies in Mathematics. Today, Hari is a classically trained James Beard nominated Chef as well as an active tenured Associate Professor of Mathematics at Stetson University.

Hari teaches full-time at Stetson University during the day and returns to his kitchen at Cress Restaurant at night where he is co-owner and executive chef.

Show notes…

Today’s Sponsor

Hospitality Tips From the World's Best (1)

Favorite Success Quote or Mantra.

“Be honest and ultimately the rest will come.”

Knowledge bombs

  1. Which “it factor” habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?

    • Living life with a clear conscious
  2. What is your biggest weakness?

    • Being caught in the moment, and not being able to see the big picture.
  3. What is one piece of advice you have for leading others?

    • Lead by example.
  4. Whats one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview? 

    • Hire people based on how they talk to you and what their motives are.
  5. Whats a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?

    • Finding passionate, qualified staff.
  6. Whats one thing (besides food) your restaurant does well and separates you from other restaurants?

    • Being invested in their community.
  7. Whats one piece of technology you’ve adopted in your restaurant and how has it influence operations?

    • Square– Square helps millions of sellers run their business- from secure credit card processing to point of sale solutions. Get paid faster with Square and sign up today!
    • Google Calendar
  8. With all the knowledge you have now, if you could go back in time and give your past self one piece of business advice, What would it be and why?

    • Increase your menu prices, don’t under estimate your value.
  9. What is one question you think should be added to this interview?

    • Q: How can we help food education in this country?
    • A:  Culinary programs need to dive deeper into the business of food.

Contact Info


103 West Indiana Avenue

Deland, FL


Thanks for Listening!

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Huge thanks to Hari Pulapaka for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!