302: Why great leaders create leaders with Randy Caparoso

Highlights in this episode: why your first priority needs to be discovering your strengths, creating leaders, never blaming anyone but yourself for shortcomings, and the importance of becoming some who inspires.
Randy Caparoso was a founding partner of the James Beard Award-winning  Roy’s Family of Restaurants, where he was VP & Corporate Wine Director, opening 28 restaurants from Hawaii to New York. Presently, Randy is a restaurant consultant, multi-award winning wine journalist, Editor-at-Large and the Bottom Line columnist for The SOMM Journal, and currently blogs and does social media work for Lodi Winegrape Commission’s lodiwine.com.

Show notes…

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Favorite Success Quote or Mantra.

“Never give up”

In this episode we discuss:

  • Discovering what you’re good at
  • Shareing his passion for wine. Specifically, sharing new and different types of wine with friends at parties.
  • Choose to excel: don’t just show up be amazing.
  • Don’t settle for being ordinary, be extraordinary!
  • Why it pays to be a value-driven restaurant.
  • How to tell when a restaurant is a failing restaurant: When your guest leave and no one says goodbye.
  • Living your values and the culture you set for your team.
  • Understanding that, “Nobody follows anyone that they’re not inspired by.”
  • Why great leaders create leaders.
  • How to create leaders that think for themselves.

Career Challenge or Failure

  • Randy experienced the dangers that come from becoming too big.
  • Behind every great restaurant is a great person. If you become too big you dilute the greatness, the thing that made you special in the first place.
  • Don’t focus on being big, focus on being even better at what made you great in the first place.

Knowledge bombs

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

    • Always question yourself.
    • Asking himself, “What should I be doing now?”
    • Staying innovative
  2. What is your biggest weakness?

    • Blinded by the drive to be great.
  3. What is one piece of advice you have for leading others?

    • If something is going wrong it is almost always your fault.
  4. What’s one question you ask or thing you look for during an interview? 

    • Look for intelligence.
    • Find out how they’re going to get to work.
  5. What’s one thing (besides food) your restaurant does well and separates you from other restaurants?

    • Caring.
  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?

    • Open Table– OpenTable increases your profits by helping you seat more diners, take more reservations, and turn casual customers into regulars. We reach guests when they’re deciding where to dine. And we enable prompt and attentive service so they come back.
  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?

    • Be more patient.
    • Think about what you do and say before you do and say them.
  9. What is one question you think should be added to this interview?

    • Q: What do you do when you know exactly who you are?
    • A: Get it on paper in the form of core values, principles, visions and missions. Then LIVE IT!

Contact Info

Twitter: @RCaparoso

Instagram: rcaparoso

Facebook: /Randy.caparoso

Thanks for Listening!

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Huge thanks to Randy Caparoso for joining me for another awesome episode. Until next time!