Tuff Stuff…maybe, not that tuff.
I recently attended the Piper Jaffrey conference in NYC (just before heading off to a spectacular vacation, really delayed honeymoon with my wife Shelley) and as always it was as well constructed content-wise as it was hosted. Prominent in many discussions/presentations for restaurants were the expected topics of millennials, technology interfaces for consumers, local sourcing and sustainability, all of which are increasing appearing as the table stakes for being in the restaurant business. I began thinking about what will create differentiation, meaningful differentiation, for the consumers faced with a widening array of increasingly “relevant” brands? My belief is that it will be brands with a purpose so clear and powerful that it transcends the transaction. A purpose, a reason for existing, that is compelling for the guests, for employees and all stakeholders. This is a purpose that guides leadership as well as front line staff in every decision. This is a purpose that is never compromised for the sake of profits, which is easy to support in hindsight, very difficult in the moment. A purpose that inspires and at the same time demands courage….which is why it is rarely seen.