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G'Day! 10 Facts About Outback Steakhouse

Don’t let the accent fool you: With its generously seasoned steaks, deep-fried shrimp platters, and sauce-drenched desserts, Outback Steakhouse’s cuisine is way more American than Australian. And most people seem to be okay with that. In 30 years time, Outback has gone from an underwhelming opening to become one of the most popular restaurant chains in America—a place where the Fosters is always flowing, and where you’ll likely find more than one boomerang stuck to the wall.

1. IT IS NOT, IN FACT, A TASTE OF THE OUTBACK.

You may be shocked to learn that a Bloomin' Onion is not a traditional dish of the Australian Outback. Nor are Aussie Fries or Alice Springs Chicken Quesadillas. But considering that real Outback cuisine includes bush tomatoes and wattleseed biscuits, you’re probably okay with that.

2. YOU CAN THANK CROCODILE DUNDEE.

Back in 1986, Paul Hogan introduced Americans to the image of Australians as rugged, carefree, and always carrying a big knife. Crocodile Dundee was the second most popular film in America that year, and created a cultural wave that Outback Steakhouse’s founders hoped to ride. In March 1988, they opened the first location in Tampa, Florida.

3. NONE OF THE FOUNDERS HAD EVER BEEN TO AUSTRALIA.

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All three were veterans of the restaurant industry and wanted to invest in a novel concept. After developing the idea for Outback Steakhouse, a research trip was proposed and then quickly shot down. According to co-founder Chris Sullivan, they didn’t want to be influenced by the cuisine or otherwise put off their mission to deliver “American food and Australian fun.” 

4. IT DID NOT HAVE A PROMISING START.

Opening day was as desolate as a sun-baked highway stretching to the horizon. Employees at the Tampa, Florida location had to park in the lot to make it look busy and call their friends and family and invite them to come in. To drum up business, the founders invested in ads and promotions, and eventually word got around.

5. NEW ORLEANS WAS A BIG INFLUENCE.

Co-founder Tim Gannon developed the Bloomin' Onion while working as a chef in New Orleans, using different spice combinations to season his deep-fried onion concoction. The 18 different seasonings used to marinate Outback’s steaks are also inspired by The Big Easy.  

6. THERE'S ONLY ONE BLOOMIN' ONION.

Well, actually there are many—they just go by different names. There’s LongHorn Steakhouse’s Texas Rose, Chili’s Awesome Blossom (which was discontinued a few years back), and the thousands upon thousands of concoctions people create in their own kitchens using an at-home onion fryer. But only Outback's onions are crafted by "dedicated bloomologists."

7. THERE ACTUALLY ARE LOCATIONS IN AUSTRALIA.

Seven, to be exact, which means Australians must not find Outback Steakhouse completely offensive. There are subtle changes, like a menu that lists “prawns” instead of “shrimp,” and a grammatically incorrect tagline that exhorts diners to “Live Adventurous.”  

8. THEY JUST STARTED SERVING LUNCH.

Lunch has traditionally been viewed as a money-loser in the restaurant industry, but that’s starting to change as fast-casual companies like Chipotle rake in the dough. So Outback decided to give it a go with $6.99 combo meals and more 100% not-Australian dishes like Aussie Tacos.

9. THEY ONCE SOLD STEAK FLIGHTS.

For a fleeting few weeks back in 2013, Outback offered diners three 3-oz. steaks with a choice of four sauces. It sounds pretty fancy, until you learn that one of the sauces was called Creamy Diablo.

10. FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS' JEMAINE CLEMENT STARRED IN A SERIES OF ADS.

Never mind that Clement’s from New Zealand, not Australia—the ads are still pretty funny.

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Live Smarter
The Only Way to Answer ‘What Is Your Greatest Weakness?’ In a Job Interview
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Thanks in part to the influence of Silicon Valley and its focus on the psychological probing of job applicants, interview questions have been steadily getting more and more abstract. As part of the interview process, today's job seekers might be asked to describe a vending machine to someone who’s never seen one before, or plan a fantasy date with a famous historical figure.

Even if the company you’re approaching isn’t fully on board with prodding your brain, at some point you may still come up against one of the most common queries applicants face: "What is your greatest weakness?"

"Some 'experts' will tell you to try and turn a strength into a 'weakness,' to make yourself look good," writes Inc. contributor Justin Bariso. "That advice is garbage."

"Think about it," Bariso continues. "Interviewers are asking the same question to countless candidates. Just try and guess how many times they hear the answers 'being a perfectionist' or 'working too much.' (Hint: way too often.)"

While responding that you work too hard might seem like a reliable method of moving the conversation along, there’s a better way. And it involves being sincere.

"The fact is, it's not easy to identify one's own weaknesses," Bariso writes. "Doing so takes intense self-reflection, critical thinking, and the ability to accept negative feedback—qualities that have gone severely missing in a world that promotes instant gratification and demands quick (often thoughtless) replies to serious issues."

Bariso believes the question is an effective way to reveal an applicant’s self-awareness, which is why companies often use it in their vetting process. By being self-aware, people (and employees) can correct behavior that might be affecting job performance. So the key is to give this question some actual thought before it’s ever posed to you.

What is your actual greatest weakness? It could be that, in a desire to please everyone, you wind up making decisions based on the urge to avoid disappointing others. That’s a weakness that sounds authentic.

Pondering the question also has another benefit: It prompts you to think of areas in your life that could use some course-correcting. Even if you don’t land that job—or even if the question is never posed to you—you’ve still made time for self-reflection. The result could mean a more confident and capable presence for that next interview.

[h/t Inc.]

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Words
This Is the Most Commonly Misspelled Word on Job Resumes
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by Reader's Digest Editors

Your resume is your first chance to make a good impression with hiring managers. One misspelled word might not seem like a huge deal, but it can mean the difference between looking competent and appearing lazy. A 2014 Accountemps survey of 300 senior managers found that 63 percent of employers would reject a job candidate who had just one or two typos on their resume.

Most misspellings on resumes slip through the cracks because spellcheck doesn’t catch them. The most common misspelling on resumes is a shockingly simple word—or so you’d think.

Career coach and resume writer Jared Redick of Resume Studio in San Francisco tells Business Insider that the most common misspelling he sees by far is confusing “lead” with “led.” If you’re talking about how you run meetings at your current job, the correct spelling is “lead,” which is in the present tense. If the bullet point is from a former position, use lead’s past tense: led. Yes, “lead” as in the metal can also be pronounced “led,” but most people have no need to discuss chemical elements on their job resumes.

 
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Other spelling mistakes Redick has seen pop up over and over again on resumes is spelling “definitely” as “definately” (which spellcheck thankfully should catch) and adding an e in “judgment” (“judgement” is the British spelling, but “judgment” is preferred in American English).

To avoid the cringe factor of noticing little typos after sending out your application—especially if your misspelling actually is a real word that spellcheck recognizes—always proofread your resume before submitting. Slowly reading it out loud will take just a few minutes, but it could mean the difference between an interview and a rejection.

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