In this episode with Michael Lennox, we discuss:
- How Lennox became a successful restaurant owner with ZERO restaurant experience.
- How the opening of the Atlanta Belt Line has been creating new opportunity for local restauranteurs.
- How Lennox is using skills he picked up from his law and real estate experience as a restaurateur.
- Key things to consider when negotiating a lease.
- How to get an SBA loan with no prior industry experience.
- Surrounding yourself with a team of people who are strong where you're weak.
- Centralizing the communication between the FOH and BOH through the GM.
- Keeping your cool under pressure so your negative energy doesn't affect your team.
- Surrounding yourself with managers who have strong networks.
- Giving your managers opportunity to grow.
- Freeing yourself from the day to day with delegation so you can redirect your focus to working on the business.
- "Shaking the ghost" out of pre-existing restaurant spaces before moving a new restaurant in.
Michael Lennox is a 33 year old Atlanta native. Upon returning to his hometown and prior to his career as a restaurateur, Lennox practiced law. Lennox took his first swing at the restaurant industry in 2014 with Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall. Following Ladybird's success, Lennox opened sister restaurants Muchacho and Golden Eagle in the fall of 2017 to much acclaim.
Favorite Success Quote or Mantra.
"Genius is 1% inspiration 99 perspiration."
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Which "it factor" habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?
- Trusting your team. Early and often. Ask questions later.
What is your biggest weakness?
- Being his own biggest critic.
What's one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview?
- Ask, "What do you like to cook during your free time?"
What's a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?
- Building up the management company.
Share one code of conduct or behavior you teach your team.
- Even if you Don't know that right solution or answer, just try as hard as you can.
What is one uncommon standard of service you teach your staff?
- Put yourself in the guest shoes.
What's one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?
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- A Lapsed Anarchist’s Approach to:
Share an online resource or tool.
What's one piece of technology you've adopted in your restaurant and how has it influence operations?
If you got the news that you'd be leaving this world tomorrow and all memories of you, your work, and your restaurants would be lost with your departure with the exception of 3 pieces of wisdom you could leave behind for the good of humanity, what would they be?
- Try the hardest in everything you do.
- Never tell a line.
- Always give your friends and family the shirt off your back.
Thanks for Listening!
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Huge thanks to Michael Lennox for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!
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