A Taste of Chicago

Spot-on recruiting and facilities with swagger.
That’s why you chose watchLAB Chicago.

But while you’re here with us, you still need to eat.

We hand pick only the best for our clients, and bring the high-end quality and flavor right to your seats in our boutique studios.

Check out our menu of new powerhouse restaurants that will keep you coming back for more.


“Reminiscent of Executive Chef Paul Kahan’s father’s smokehouse and delicatessen, Publican Quality Meats harkens back to the time of family run businesses and traditional whole animal butchery.”

Publican Quality Meats ups the ante in the trend of contemporary charcuterie by presenting high quality meats prepared in-house. You’ll love their creative and unique spread of sandwiches as well as their delicious cheese platter, but lets be real, it’s all about the meat. We recommend the “Cold Butchers Plate” with up to five different pieces of charcuterie chosen by the chef and delivered with a smattering of accoutrement that would put the French to shame.


“We are a farm to tavern restaurant, making all of our own burgers, condiments, and sodas from scratch. Image credit: the Hop-Cast. Click image for source.”

Farmhouse acts as resonant example of the strength and quality present in the farm to table movement, with its roots right here in the heart of the Midwest. Sourcing their ingredients from local farms and farmers markets, Farmhouse gives you the down home goodness with an upscale flair.


“The recipe for Giordano’s now-famous stuffed pizza is one that has evolved over 200 years.”

When it comes to eating in Chicago, no trip would be complete without filling up on all the cheesy goodness of a Chicago deep-dish pizza. While every Chicagoan has a different opinion on who’s the best, Giordano’s rises above the competition with a buttery and crispy crust and mounds of gooey mozzarella. Toppings or not, hand-held or knifed and forked, there’s no wrong way to eat Giordano’s stuffed pizza. It just tastes even better at watchLAB (but don’t tell them we said that).


“Located within Chicago’s bustling River North neighborhood, Sunda pairs New Asian fare with Midwestern hospitality for an award-winning concept. Image credit: Sunda Chicago. Click image for source.”

Drawing from different regions of Asia, Sunda comes to us from one of Chicago’s hottest restaurateurs, bridging the gaps between pan-Pacific and Midwestern. It can be hard to decide from the surplus of delectable bites, but at watchLAB, we’ve never seen that as a bad thing. Try the Crispy Brussels Sprouts for a savory healthy bite that’s sure to wow you with its flavor.


“Open early and closing late, this quick-service café from Rick and Deann Bayless proffers contemporary expressions of Mexico’s most beloved street food and snacks. Image from Xoco’s Instagram feed–follow Xoco on Instagram @xocochicago.”

There isn’t much excitement associated with the term “street food,” but with Xoco the chefs have come up with a fun, flavorful menu taking the flavors of the Mexican marketplace and serving them up with added flair. Take a bite of the Cubano sandwich and try and stop yourself from finishing.

At watchLAB we make sure to keep a pulse on the ever-evolving food culture in Chicago and our clients’ tastes.

Find the perfect balance on our fresh menu, filled with delectables of every variety. And if there’s ever something you really have a craving for, we’re more than happy to make your favorite food appear on your plate.

Bon Appétit.  

The Apple Watch: 21st Century Jewelry


Image source: A Blog to Watch. Click on the image to read their Apple Watch review.


It’s hard to remember a world without smartphones, but their current iteration has only been around for eight years.

It’s remarkable, really. After the debut of the iPhone in 2007, it took less than 10 years for most of us to begin carrying supercomputers in our pockets. Our smartphones have an always-on internet connection, a huge amount of processing power, and a growing number of powerful sensors. They are a technological revolution, and we have embraced it with open arms.

But the revolution isn’t over. Now Apple and Google–the two companies vying for control of the supercomputer in your pocket—want to take over the place on your wrist.

The Apple Watch, Android Wear, and the Pebble watch all seek to make your life better by giving you bite-sized, glance-able information without having to pull out your phone. But they can do even more than that. They hold advanced sensors that track your heartbeat, the number of steps you take, the calories you’ve burned, and the number of times you’ve stood up. They can pair with your phone to extend your applications to your wrist for quick views and replies. And that’s just the beginning.

The Rise of the Quantified Self

There’s a movement that’s been around for a while called “the quantified self.” It’s used to describe people who use technology to track all manner of statistics about their behaviors, habits, and biological data. With the Apple Watch entering the mainstream market (and perhaps more importantly, the mainstream consciousness), we’ll all be quantified soon.

Adherents of the Quantified Self spend much of their time measuring their biological signals, or their emotional states, or their degree of productivity. Wearable tech automates a lot of this data collection. Devices such as the Fitbit have been offering this for years for specific applications like step-tracking, and sleep tracking.


Source: marco.org, by Marco Arment. Screenshot of the Apple Watch Activity app. Click the image to read Marco’s piece “Filling the Green Circle.”

The Apple Watch has this functionality built in, with the promise of much more as the platform matures. Baseline fitness and health data like steps and heart rates are calculated automatically, while more manual recording is made even easier when it only requires a moment of interaction—the sort of interaction you have on a small watch face—to input the data. That data is there for you to interpret at the end of the day, when you have the time.

These interactions will become more commonplace as the Apple Watch and similar devices become more popular. The cloud of personal information that follows you around will become larger, more specific, and more helpful as both hardware and software continue to improve.

“Our Most Personal Device Yet”

When the Apple Watch was announced, Tim Cook called it “our most personal device yet,” and he was right. Macs are something you work on and leave on a desk; iPads slip into a bag or a purse; iPhones are always with you in your pocket. The Apple Watch is something you will wear all day as jewelry. Jewelry is personal, and 21st century jewelry comes with a screen and sensors.

Jewelry has always been a way express ourselves to the outside world. To make statements. 21st century jewelry talks back, through information. 21st century jewelry requires attention.

It’s another revolution, even if it takes more than 10 years for us all to start wearing them.

What We’re Watching

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What We’re Watching is watchLAB‘s weekly rundown of the awesome content our Staff has been watching, reading, and consuming from all over the internet.  Check out our videos, articles, and cool stuff from around the web.

What We’re Watching:

No Motivates Likes Shia LeBeof

Found on YouTube, by Mike Mohamed

Top Logos of the World

Found on Daily Infographic, by Kate Goins

top logos

Taking a Magic Leap of Faith?

Found on Business Insider, by Eugene Kim

This is watchLAB saying, “Keep watching and have a good weekend!”

Millennials Changing
the Face of How We Work

millenials now

A lot is said about the latest generation to enter the workforce. The Millennial presence has challenged the status quo, being the first generation to grow up entirely with the Internet and a gamut of 21st century instant-gratification technology. Often snarked on as “the trophy generation,” where there are no losers and everyone gets a trophy, it’s not surprising that Millennials have also brought a new air of confidence into nearly every company and industry in America and have caused colleagues and managers to stand at attention.

This confident assertiveness can be intimidating and threatening for some employers. To generalize, as we Market Researchers love to do, Millennials are quicker to speak up and ask for more responsibility and more flexible work situations than any generation before them . It would be natural for earlier-generation employers to challenge these seemingly brazen requests, insisting that Millennials spend longer proving themselves before being rewarded with the “trophy” to which they’ve become accustomed.

But when the new generation is seen less as a potential threat and instead appreciated for the opportunity they present, the rewards can be profound. This has been watchLAB’s experience with two rising-star employees, in particular. In only three short years at watchLAB, both Stephanie Mahley and Emira Bardhi have been promoted from entry-level to managerial positions: Stephanie from Assistant Recruiting Manager to Associate Director, and Emira from Recruiter to Project Manager, both also tucking several mid-level positions under their belts along the way.

While we’d love to be able to pat ourselves on the back for some strategic and well-oiled management training program that allowed this to happen, the reality is quite the opposite. The credit goes entirely to Stephanie and Emira for raising their hands to say, “I can do more. Let me do more.” And more they did, proving themselves capable of not only owning their current workload but scaling themselves to manage additional responsibilities, as well.

So naturally, when they and any other fully-achieving employee confidently asks to work from home or even from another city, we trust them to do so. And while it’s not only Millennials that are wanting and needing more flexible work arrangements, we’d attest that it’s because of their speak-up attitude that the wheels have been greased for previous generations to feel comfortable in asking for the same — Boomers so they can more easily continue to work past the typical retirement age, and Gen-Exers so they can balance work with their family and child-rearing responsibilities.

Instead of being met with apprehension or an intimidated eye roll, Millennials should be thanked for initiating a two-way conversation between employer and employee. No longer is it acceptable to sit idly by if you want to be noticed or promoted. The answer might not always be an immediate, “Yes,” but better to stick your hand up and make your aspirations known. That courage and confidence alone is trophy-worthy.

“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe



#MRX is watchLAB’s weekly round up of some of the best Marketing Research posts from around the twitter-sphere. Add #MRX to your Marketing Research tweets to be considered for next week’s round up.

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Stephanie Mahley, Associate Director

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Emira Morina, Associate Director

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