Jon Bon Jovi’s newest restaurant, Soul Kitchen, redefines the way individuals look at hunger. No, not because the food is so delicious (although they do use fresh and local ingredients), but because of the unique experience the restaurant provides.
At Soul Kitchen, there are no prices on the menu. Instead, diners can choose between paying a $10 suggested donation and volunteering their time working in the restaurant. The rationale behind this unconventional process is to open Soul Kitchen to everyone, regardless of whether or not they can afford it. By allowing customers to work for their meals, Bon Jovi is helping individuals learn valuable lessons that could make them more employable, such as how to cook, wash dishes and bus or wait on tables.
According to Bon Jovi, one of the most important aspects of the Soul Kitchen is its sense of community. The restaurant helps to foster relationships within the community by seating people next to others they may not know. Since it is impossible to know which customers are paying for their food, it also aids in breaking down the barriers between rich and poor.
Why did Bon Jovi create the Soul Kitchen as opposed to a normal restaurant where he could easily wield a profit? It all comes down to his motivators. Bon Jovi has a high social / humanitarian motivator, meaning that he cares more about helping others than helping himself. This selfless attitude is exemplified in all of his business ventures, including Soul Kitchen.
Although I haven’t been able to attend the restaurant myself, I would highly recommend stopping by Soul Kitchen if you ever find yourself near Red Banks or Toms River, New Jersey for a look at what a high social motivator can produce.