Jennifer Ryan is the restaurateur behind BlueRoot, a seemingly rare example of tasty, healthy eating in Alabama. She’s also the Co-Founder and CEO of Croux, an online marketplace that connects vetted talent with flexible work opportunities.
On this episode, Jennifer walks us through creating a culture of “yes” at BlueRoot, where the answer to a customer’s request is always one smile away. She even lets us in on her secret sauce for fostering a dedicated, well-compensated team, proving that a smaller staff can make a mighty impact.
What is the most important aspect of the guest experience nowadays?
“It’s personal experience, it’s personal connection, it’s a hello and I will say we’re a tiny restaurant of 1,700 square feet. You know you come in the door, we’re going to see you, you’re going to see us, but I always want to make sure you feel seen and heard, and whether that is a special request, whether that is just, you know, a greeting when somebody walks in the door. We subscribe to that age-old notion of the answer is yes, what is the question? And so I try to go above and beyond to make that person feel loved and special.”
What tactics have you seen used to improve the guest experience?
“I’m certainly not creating these out of thin air. I’m certainly trying to read the books and lean on the experts, because I think the best way to learn how to do something is either to jump in you know feet first and try to figure it out and really do the hand-to-hand combat every day and understand what works and take notes and sort of you know, create a playbook.”
Who in the restaurant industry deserves an ovation?
Lindsey Noto, Co-Founder of Croux
“When I think of Lindsay, I think of every facet of the hospitality industry represented…And so this is someone who I met through the industry and has opened my eyes to not just what the industry represents in terms of creativity and innovation, but also of great kindness. She just embodies the word hospitality.“