Meet Joe Fontana, the charismatic owner of a successful chicken sandwich restaurant, Fry the Coop. With an unwavering commitment to enhancing the guest experience, Joe reveals how he’s carved out a successful niche within the bustling chicken industry. We tackle the tough topic of survival in a cut-throat market and the ever-changing restaurant industry trends.
What is the most important aspect of the guest experience?
“First of all, customer service is going out the window. It’s so hard to find good customer service nowadays and I think the new generation is A.) not trained on it and B.), they just don’t think about it, it’s not common sense. I go back to real simple stuff. When somebody walks in, say hello to them, you know, make sure you greet them, make sure they feel welcomed.“
What are some tactics you use to improve the guest experience?
“It’s called the choice between two tokens. Imagine a customer has a complaint or a problem and it is the end of the world. When anyone has a customer complaint about anything, I take the choice of ‘we’re going to act like the world’s ending’, and then ultimately get the guest to be like ‘hey, it’s not that big of a deal.’“
Who in the restaurant industry deserves an Ovation?
“I just learned about them maybe a few months ago and they’ve been running these hilarious ads on their social media. Everything about their brand looks great and they have eight locations too. They’re crushing it.“