- How being a connector will serve you when as a restaurant owner;
- The importance of seeing talent in others and putting them in “the right lane”;
- Why you should celebrate when your staff members leave you;
- Tips to getting started as a POP-UP;
- Why its important to create an email list;
- Why you need to treat your restaurant as a medium to express who you are and tell your story; and
- Understanding that success takes time and to not get discouraged when it doesn’t happen over night.
Sarah Gavigan is a graduate of Arizona State University. Gavigan has always been an entrepreneur at heart. She perused her entrepreneurial spirit matching independent artist music into commercials.
Somewhere in her 20 years, while living in Los Angeles, Gavigan developed a passion for Japanese ramen. Today Gavigan is exercising her passion as a the founder of Little octopus, Otaku South, and Pop Nashville.
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Success or Leadership Quote/Mantra
“Complacency has killed more people than all the diseases in the world.”
What is your “why”?
- Sarah has always been driven by food.
- She loves bringing people together around food.
- She calls herself “An obsessed home cook, who hopped the fence” and a natural “connector”.
- Being a connector of people.
- Seeing the talents in others and building fantastic teams.
- Knowing the people who work for her.
- Keeping it simple stupid.
Industry Challenge or Failure
- In Sarah’s previous career she tried automating an aspect of her business and it didn’t go well. What she learned was that some things need to stay in the customer service realm. This is a high touch, highly personal career path, which takes a lot of face time. There needs to be human touch there.
- Scale. Start small and work your way up. Sarah’s restaurants started a POP-UP.
- Sarah used POP-UPs to develop her brand, create sweat equity, and improve her P&L. Over time, she was able to gain the trust of her community and investors to bring it to the next level.
- Sarah’s first question is, “Whats your long-term plan?” Have the interviewees explain their life goals and dreams of where they want to be.
- Once you know your team members motives, help them get to where they’re going. Create a culture where if they work hard for you, they’ll know you’ll work hard for them, especially when it comes to helping them achieve their goals.
- Know and accept that people are going to move on and when it happens celebrate the movement as a team.
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Advice on Marketing
- You need to have a great story.
- Be deliberate with creating your story.
- Use social media to share the story. Sarah prefers Instagram.
- Sarah recommends using a journal to capture your story and reflect on your story. Documenting your story gives you amazing, new perspectives.
- I use Day One for journaling. Day One is a simple journal application for the Mac and iPhone.
- Never stop working on building your email list.
- Take care of your “super fans” and they’ll take care of you.
Objective Product/Service Review Suggestion
- Wunderlist– Wunderlist is the easiest way to get stuff done. Whether you’re planning a holiday, sharing a shopping list with a partner or managing multiple work projects, Wunderlist is here to help you tick off all your personal and professional to-dos.
- MailChimp– Online email marketing solution to manage contacts, send emails and track results.
Best Business Advice
- Know that it takes time. Don’t get discouraged when it doesn’t happen over night. If it does happen, be ready to accept that it’s not going to stay that way. Prepare financially.