Keith is flying solo on this episode but is in good company with guest Jess Chuang, owner and operator of Ichiban To-Go alongside her father who first started the business in the 80’s. She shares how she runs things, how she keeps her staff loyal, and how she adapted Ichiban’s business model throughout of the pandemic.
[00:52] Introducing Jess
[02:18] How Jess’ Dad Started Ichiban
[09:11] How Jess Would Run Things
[13:31] Full-Service of Ichiban
[15:29] Jess’ Tactic of Recruiting
[21:10] Jess’ Long-Term Vision
[24:38] The Biggest Lesson from COVID-19
[28:22] Biggest Gamble
[29:13] Jess’ COV-Hole of the Week
How Jess is Recruiting, Retaining, and Motivating Staff
Jess used to work in events and she understands the struggle of people thinking you’re just a cog in a machine. Her secret to having employees stay for over a year is that she treats them like family; she doesn’t under-pay and she acknowledges that every employee has a life and that they’re all working in a high-stress industry.
Adapting to the COVID Era
The most important lesson Jess picked-up from the pandemic was to listen and collaborate with the people around you. During the first few months of the pandemic, Jess decided to do some research and hear out her head chef who suggested doing take-out to adapt to the times. From then on, she stands by three things: doing your research, knowing your market, and most importantly, immersing yourself in your community and giving them what they want (like Pumpkin Spice Lattes).
Where to Find Them:
Facebook - DeVita & Hancock Hospitality Group Inc.
Instagram - @devita_hancock_hospitality
Official Website - DeVita and Hancock Hospitality Group
Christine DeVita on LinkedIn
Keith Hancock on LinkedIn
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