by Bob Gershberg, CEO/Managing Partner Wray Executive Search
As the country gets vaccinated and the light at the end of the tunnel shines brightly for the economy and the restaurant industry, a challenge we have become all too familiar with has returned with a bang. Strengthened by the additional fiscal stimulus, the economy is projected to expand at a steady pace in 2021. Real GDP will grow at annualized rates of at least 5-6% during each quarter of 2021 – the first such occurrence during a calendar year since 1983.
Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. economy was experiencing its longest expansion on record. More than 22.8 million jobs were added during the 10-year period ending February 2020, and the unemployment rate hovered near half century lows, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The war for talent was raging. When the economy shed nearly 22.4 million jobs in March and April, it wiped out most of the gains of the previous 10 years. Although 12.3 million jobs were added back to payrolls during the final 8 months of 2020, the economy still finished the year more than 10 million jobs below pre-pandemic levels.
“Many companies have forgotten they sell to actual people. Humans care about the entire experience, not just the marketing or sales or service. To really win in the modern age, you must solve for humans.”
- Dharmesh Shah, CTO & Co-Founder, HubSpot
Restaurant Reality 2021
by John A. Gordon, Principal and Founder, Pacific Management Consulting Group
Our industry depends on people having money and moving around.
Economic conditions are moving along nicely right now. After many downs and some ups in the COVID year, both QSR and the sit-down space are moving along—not perfectly in the casual dining/fine dining space, but better. Several things are happening now that are finally showing a broad-based sales lift—not versus 2020 which we know now is a very flawed base, but 2019, which is more realistic. Consider:
Economic stimulus payments flowing into the economy.
Better weather and “spring fever”.
Vaccinations clearly on the rise, reaching critical mass soon.
Documented improved consumer confidence in dining out.
Tourism and non-business related travel up.
Looking ahead, I’ll be watching for any sales fall off after the $1400 stimulus is spent out, and the typical May-July US restaurant seasonal appear. Also, movie, special event and sporting event attendance, business conventions, and business travel are essential drivers to the wellness of the rest of the industry.
The 5 Most Important and Critical Skills for Jobs of the Future
by Joel Garfinkle
“Personal development is the belief that you are worth the effort, time and energy needed to develop yourself.” – Denis Waitley
According to the World Economic Forum, five years from now, over one-third of the skills that are important on the job today will have become irrelevant. That means some of your employees could find their jobs being phased out in the coming years.
Through active leadership, you can support your direct reports through these transitions. If you’ve realized that one of your employees has a job that will become obsolete in the foreseeable future, it’s time to take action. You need to proactively help him develop a strategy for remaining marketable and valuable, helping him define a viable pathway for his career. Recently I shared insights on which skills will be most critical for jobs of the future. By helping your employees develop those skills, you’ll help open new opportunities for them in the years to come.
Featuring Darryl Gaddis, President and Founder of Jaws Jumbo Burgers
By Rebecca Patt, SVP Development, Wray Executive Search
Jaws Jumbo Burgers is located in White House, TN, with plans to expand in FL and AZ. President and founder Darryl Gaddis has been developing the concept ever since he saw the movie Jaws in the 1970s and realized the massive appeal of giant sharks, offering menu items such as the Jaws Frenzee Double Burger and the Jaws Triple Megalodon and luring back many repeat customers.
What inspired you to start Jaws Jumbo Burgers?
In 1976 the name of my restaurant was Paradise Sub Shoppe. That same year, I saw the movie Jaws. I thought the Jaws movie would make a great restaurant concept. In 1984, I opened Jaws Super Subs. In 1985, I created the Jaws Frenzee Double Burger. We were selling so many burgers in 1986 we changed our name to Jaws Jumbo Burgers.