Tom Gordon of Slim Chickens reveals the secrets behind maintaining consistency and innovation while ensuring a top-notch, frictionless guest experience.

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Today, we’re thrilled to welcome Tom Gordon, CEO of Slim Chickens. With nearly 22 years at the helm, Tom has been instrumental in transforming Slim Chickens into a beloved brand known for its innovative LTOs and consistently delicious offerings. We discuss how Tom balances staying true to the core menu while continuously introducing exciting new options. He shares his philosophy on creating a frictionless guest experience, from the moment customers drive onto the lot to the time they leave.

Here are some highlights:

How do you stay both consistent and innovative? (1:25)

“I think you have to start with the founders… They have to know what their strengths and weaknesses are and they have to allow people to support them in the areas in which they are not at their best.”

What’s the most important aspect of the guest experience? (2:53)

“You have to own the experience. I mean you have to own it from the time they drive on the lot to the time they leave. And that means what do they see when they drive on the lot? How does the restaurant look? Cleanliness, trash, people, is there a drive-through? Are we friendly and fast?”

Any tactics or tools that you specifically have found to be successful in creating a great guest experience? (5:11)

“The word we use is we want the experience to be frictionless. We want a frictionless guest experience meaning it’s easy for them to choose to come back. It’s not going to be hard I got my kids in the back and still get to the drive-thru or get inside and it’s not going to be long, painful, drawn out, unexpected it’s the same. It’s consistent, it’s friendly, it’s quick and it’s frictionless. It’s easy. We want it to be easy for folks to choose us.”

Who’s someone who deserves an Ovation in the restaurant industry? (10:22)

“I mean the team at Chipotle. Their digital program is awesome and amazing. They do a great job in the restaurants as well.”

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