YED: Melody Fury

After receiving tons of requests for restaurant recommendations around the Vancouver Winter Olympics, YED Melody Fury realized there was finally both a demand and a way to share her culinary passion with others, which lead her to opening ‘Vancouver Food Tour’, where she takes both tourists and locals alike to the best places the city has to offer in this Tuesday’s YEDaily…

Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I’m the Founder and CEO of Vancouver Food Tour, a unique culinary tour company in beautiful British Columbia. On the side, I photograph (MelodyFury.com) and write (GourmetFury.com) about food, cocktails, and restaurants.

Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
In short, my passion for local food culture drove me to start Vancouver Food Tour. I travel with my taste buds and learned that many do as well. My list of restaurants to visit on my last trip to Europe was so long, I wished there was a more efficient way to hit them all up.

Before the Winter Olympics, the number of requests for Vancouver restaurant recommendations in my inbox overwhelmed me. That’s when the light bulb flicked on. I then created Vancouver Food Tour with the mission to guide visitors to BC’s best restaurants to experience local products and flavours. The business has since expanded into culinary event planning for locals as well.

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
The best part of my day is when my inbox is clean and I can kick back with a cocktail (homemade or at the bar, I can go either way).

The most challenging part is trying to coordinate between many parties at once and meeting all of their demands. Since so much of communication is done via email nowadays, I find communicating more tedious and time consuming than it needs to be. I’m awful at maintaining email chains – ask any of my friends.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
In five years, I’ll hopefully be running a bigger and better VFT behind the scenes. If it’s not growing, I’m doing something wrong. I expect my food photography business to grow as well, especially because I’m working hard to hone my skills every day. In five years, I’ll hopefully have a successful food-related app under my belt, written a book, travelled a whole lot, and completed grad school. I’m not ready for children, though.

What does success look like to you?
Success is being able to help others and making a meaningful impact on the world while having the resources and free time to spend with loved ones.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
Winning the title of “Entrepreneur of the Year” in Westender’s Best of the City Awards in 2011 definitely fueled the spark to keep pushing forward.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
1. Truly understand the problem you’re trying to fix before getting ahead of yourself. I’ve spread myself thin on one too many “good ideas.”
2. Avoid making enemies. It’ll do you absolutely no good.
3. Always over deliver according to your terms but never let anyone walk over you.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
I like to be hands-on so volunteering my time is my favourite way to give. Mentoring youth is something I’ve done for many years but I prefer to keep that facet of my life private. The youth keeps me humble, empathetic, and frankly, young.

Last year, I organized the largest bake sale in Vancouver’s history to fundraise for Japan earthquake and tsunami victims. Bake for the Quake raised over $7000 for the Red Cross.

In addition, I support A Loving Spoonful and A Ride to Conquer Cancer, both down-to-Earth organizations that make direct impact on everyday people’s lives. Beyond that, Vancouver Food Tour frequently donates our tours as raffle or silent auction prizes to charity events.

What to you is notable?
To be notable is having the courage to live one’s life in public and on the line for what one believes in. A notable person is someone that has made a significant, positive change in an innovative and inspirational way. That…actually does not sound like me.

Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
iPhone and Android. If forced to choose, I’d ditch my iPhone… shhh!