The Daily Rail: Times They Are A-Changin’… For Chipotle

MEMES: Music, Real life or Fanta-Sea, Hot Pockets, Let That Sink In, and More!

In this week’s batch of goofy restaurant and non-restaurant memeswe have some music related ones with Ozzy and the Chili Peppers, the worst bikini of all time, what you listen to before a Saturday double shift, and more!


UK Beer Rationing

Life is extra-rough for our friends across the pond. Right at the height of the World Cup, UK retailers have started rationing the amount of beer customers can buy. Why? The country’s running out of (food-grade) CO2 and is trying to maintain some sort of steady supply. The usual CO2 creators (ammonia plants & bio-ethanol plants) are apparently taking a summer break. We raise one in your honor, UK.

WWE Tag Teams with FOX

Life wasn’t looking great for the WWE in 2014, but things have turned around for the wrestling entertainment group. They’ve tagged in a new partner, FOX Sports, in a new TV deal. FOX Sports will air Smackdown Live starting in the fall of 2019, part of a five-year deal. Good to see FOX Sports is showing sports like the History Channel shows history these days. :D

Halo Top Sued

Halo Top, the low calorie per pint ice cream company, is being sued for “dramatically” underfilling its pints, a lawsuit claims. The lawsuit also claims that the underfilling is random and not correlated with any flavor or store location, and that customers can’t tell if they’re getting a full pint or not until afterthey pop its top at home. Halo Top, naturally, denies the allegations.


Why it matters to you: Chipotle is making some changes to their business and they are something we should all be paying attention to.

Ever since the former-Taco Bell CEO Brian Niccol took the reins at Chipotle he has made some serious and forward-thinking changes to the organization. Today finds us learning about their announcement to close at least 55 locations in the coming quarters as a part of their restructuring plan to have a flatter organization that will aid in speedier decision-making as they approach their HQ move from Colorado to Southern California. They also are in the process of implementing a thoroughly thought-through loyalty program as well as considering a happy hour, new menu items, and a push to increase their late night sales. Niccol believes that, through all of these changes, he’ll be able to comfortably double the company’s annual revenue.

As smaller operators, we can still all use Brian Niccol’s moves as solid examples of how we can do more for our customers and help ourselves at the same time. For one, closing some restaurants is never something any of us wants to hear about, but in case of being overextended, it is the only real thing to do. So ensuring you aren’t overextended is a very important first step, second step would be a solid loyalty plan. 

A loyalty plan with bonuses for your regulars is an awesome way to fuel return visits, but they are also extremely difficult to successfully implement. Start by ensuring you spend time making it truly worthwhile for your people. Lastly, a great plan is always having a happy hour on slower days. Having a really solid (and ideally unique) happy hour will always drive up business during those painful slow times. Brian Niccol isn’t making any magic over at Chipotle, just making moves that most of us can easily implement on smaller scales at a much-much larger one.



Why it matters to you: As Millennials approach parenthood they could further shift the way our industry works.

Millennials have already irreversibly changed our industry in so many ways. We’ve changed our establishments and the ways in which we do business to accommodate them and continue to every day. Everywhere we go, you can order online for pickup or delivery as folks ditch dining rooms these days and, if you can’t, there are a slew of independent options that will pick your food up and bring it your way for a fee. So as these homebody-types further approach midlife and start to have kids how will that effect all of us? Many expect an increase in the convenience-oriented online orders. Others think a shift back towards dining room visits is inevitable. Who knows for sure at this point…

So, what can we do to prepare ourselves for this uncertain future of millennials and their families? Be prepared. The best course of action is to be able to accommodate both potential outcomes and in this day and age that should be a breeze for all of us. Have an excellent in house delivery/take out program if you can, if not build a rapport with UberEATS or another independent delivery program to streamline that as much as possible and minimize mistakes. As far as in-house guests go, have some kid friendly options or a kids menu and potentially something to keep them occupied (maybe THAT is a good use for those pesky tablets ;)) and this all should be relatively smooth sailing. Other than that, all we can do is wait and see what happens next.