Find out how to stay ahead of the curve with founder and CE-Yo, Solomon Choi.

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The Off-Premise Restaurant

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Solomon Choi is the founder and CEO of 16 Handles. 16 Handles is New York City’s first self serve frozen yogurt shop. With over 20 year experience in the restaurant industry, Solomon’s restaurant concept became the segment leader in NYC and grew to over 40 locations internationally.

Here’s one of our highlights from this episode and Solomon’s answers to some of our questions:

Featured Takeaway: Work outside of your bubble

Solomon Choi described moving to New York, a place he had never previously lived as stepping completely outside of his bubble of comfort and know how. While many marketers claim that knowing your location and audience is the pinnacle of marketing, Choi claimed that it helped him to understand his market and new residence on a new level.

On his arrival in New York, Solomon walked the streets of NYC Daily in attempt to find an optimal location for his new business. He learned the day and night life of the city and saw the ins and outs of how New Yorkers lived. As a result of working outside of his bubble, Choi truly understood his audience and, in effect, the company he began to grow.

How do you think about growing a brand? (7:50)

Solomon Choi credits having different mindsets depending on the different stages his business was at to encourage the most growth. The key to changing your mindset from an entrepreneurial lens is keeping an open mind, knowing your audience, and knowing your location.

How do you stay ahead of the curve? (16:46)

“Ever since I was young, I always have questioned why do things need to be that way? And if something wasn’t to my liking, I would ask why? Why can’t someone just change it? I think that level of curiosity and ambition to change things, which I’m sure you know, gave my parents a few extra gray hairs early on. That desire to always want to push the envelope, and always being curious.

Who is someone in the industry that deserves an Ovation? (35:34)

“Steven Simoni, when I met him several years ago he was on this mission to change how business is done in our industry and solve inefficiencies. To me, it’s those types of game changers that I just love.”

If you’d like another inside scoop, go check out @16handles and @Solomonchoi on Insta!

Thanks for reading! Make sure to check out the whole episode, as well as other interviews with restaurant gurus by checking out “Give an Ovation: A Podcast For Restaurants” on or your favorite place to listen to podcasts.

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