378: You get out what you put in with Charles Bililies

In this episode, we discuss the path Charles Bililies took to get to where he is today, the value of working both FOH and BOH to get the “big picture”, how Charles landed a job for Thomas Keller straight out of college, creating your own luck,  getting out what you put in, the power of your network, lessons learned from Thomas Keller and Michael Mina, attention to detail, open book finances, creating a company of leaders, doing one thing and doing it well, why planning a restaurant is a full-time job, how Charles raised the money for Souvla, the importance of being scrappy, clarity in identity, doing few things really well, promoting from within, how to motivate your team, when you know it is time to scale, valueing your people, and promoting from within.

Charles Bililies attended Johnson and Wales University and Cornell University where he studied Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management. After finishing his formal education he continued to learn under restaurant masters such as Thomas Keller and Michael Mina. In 2014 Bililies opened Souvla- a fine-casual Greek restaurant and wine bar located in Originating in San Francisco, CA, which today has a total of 3 locations.


Show notes…

Favorite Success Quote or Mantra.

“Make it nice and be nice”


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Career Challenge or Failure

Knowledge bombs

  1. Which “it factor” habit, trait, or characteristic you believe most contributes to your success?

    • Wearing a personal uniform.
  2. What is your biggest weakness?

    • Rambling.
  3. What is one piece of advice you have for leading others?

    • Lead by example.
  4. What’s one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview?

    • Ask, “What do you want to do?”
      • Helps you find their passion.
  5. What’s a current challenge? How are you dealing with it?

    • Space.
  6. What’s one book we must read to become a better person or restaurant owner?

  7. What’s one piece of technology you’ve adopted in your restaurant and how has it influence operations?

  8. With all the knowledge you have now if you could go back in time and give your past self one piece of business advice, What would it be and why?

  9. What is one question you think should be added to this interview?

  10. What is your hook? 
  • Be ready to answer that question 😉

Contact Info

Website: SouvlaSF.com

insta: @souvlaSF


ermail: Hello@SouvlaSF.com

Thanks for Listening!

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Huge thanks to Charles Bililies for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!