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Gregg Majewski of Craveworthy Brands on the Advantages of Being #2 Interview with founder CEO of Craveworthy Brands Gregg Majewski about the power of being second, prioritizing hospitality, and the ongoing need for human service workers.

By Shawn P. Walchef

Key Takeaways

  • The Power of #2 - While rising up the ranks of the Jimmy John's sandwich chain, Gregg Majewski found there was stiff industry competition. Majewski knew that there wasn't much he could do to overtake the top sandwich spot. Still, the company could continue to focus inward to bring forth a consistently better prospect. This experience set forth his vision for Craveworthy Brands.
  • Hospitality is Always Important - Hospitality is the top priority for Gregg Majewski and Craveworthy Brands. Treating people kindly, regardless of demographic, is a precursor for that treatment to be returned. “In the world,” says Gregg Majewski, “hospitality is the most important thing.”
  • Human Interaction is Paramount - Gregg Majewski is outspoken, specifically when it comes to things he is passionate about, such as the elimination of humans at the front of the house. For him, the customer experience with robots doesn't match that of human interaction.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Gregg Majewski, the visionary hospitality industry veteran behind Craveworthy Brands, has shown that innovation, hospitality, and a commitment to human connection can lead to exceptional achievements.

As a former C-Suite employee of Jimmy John's sandwich chain, the leader learned that success didn't solely hinge on being at the top spot of your industry, but on providing something unique and perfecting the product.

"We offered something different. We delivered it and we were faster, so we became convenient to everyone. And that allowed us to be the number two sandwich concept." Majewski said about working as CEO/COO/CFO for Jimmy John's when being interviewed by Restaurant Influencers host Shawn Walchef of Cali BBQ Media.

"Number two was great. Worth billions of dollars. And in this industry, you don't have to be number one all the time."

Craveworthy Brands was founded in 2022 and is guided by a team with significant restaurant experience. Their brands consist of emerging and legacy brands, all with lots of potential for scaling.

The company owns, operates and franchises the emerging concepts: Wing It On!, The Budlong, Krafted Burger Bar + Tap, and Lucky Cat. Craveworthy's legacy brands include Genghis Grill, BD's Mongolian Grill, and Flat Top Grill — all formerly part of Mongolian Concepts for which Majewski was CEO.

Under the guidance of Majewski, it's clear that success need not always be synonymous with being obsessed with the top spot. Instead, the right approach and taking full advantage of uniqueness can lead to immense accomplishments.

Majewski's perspective on hospitality transcends his industry. His belief that kindness should be reciprocated forms the cornerstone of his ethos.

"It's our job to be as nice and kind to everybody as you want them to be to you," Gregg Majewski says when being interviewed at Restaurant365's Restaurant Transformation Festival in Austin, TX.

This fundamental principle has guided him throughout his career and laid the foundation for his Craveworthy Brands company.

In an era where technology is reshaping customer experiences, Majewski stands as a steadfast advocate for preserving human interaction. He strongly opposes the trend of replacing front-of-house staff with fully automated systems.

The personal touch should not be replaced by robots, he believes.

This critique of businesses that prioritize pure efficiency over genuine customer engagement serves as a rallying call for maintaining the heart and soul of hospitality.

"I'm against the robotic elimination of hospitality in the front of the house. So I don't want that trend to last and I want to sort of kill it." Majewski passionately voices.

Craveworthy Brands is a testament to Majewski's commitment to innovation without sacrificing authenticity. The company embodies the spirit of improving upon what's already exciting and valuable.

Zack Oates, the CEO of the Ovation restaurant technology platform, said he added Gregg Majewski to the Ovation advisory board because he was impressed with his wealth of knowledge and experience. "He has been an invaluable resource to me…. His experience with growing brands with a focus on the guest experience makes for a world-class advisor."

Now Gregg Majewski has founded his own Craveworthy Media company to dive into digital storytelling and the world of content creation.

The CEO understands that publishing a steady stream of video, audio, words, and images on the internet is one of the best ways to grow an engaging brand in the modern era. Publishing a regular video podcast series will also let him share his experience with more people all over the world.

"It's my opportunity to give back," he said.

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ABOUT RESTAURANT INFLUENCERS:

Restaurant Influencers is brought to you by Toast, the powerful restaurant point of sale and management system that helps restaurants improve operations, increase sales and create a better guest experience.

Toast — Powering Successful Restaurants. Learn more about Toast.

Shawn P. Walchef

Founder of Cali BBQ Media

“Be the show, not the commercial.”

Cali BBQ Media Founder Shawn Walchef helps brands and leaders leverage the new Business Creator Economy with strategic Smartphone Storytelling and Digital Hospitality.

His Cali BBQ restaurant company has generated more than $35 million since opening in 2008. They operate numerous locations in San Diego and beyond.

Shawn’s weekly video series Restaurant Influencers (published by Entrepreneur Media and produced by Cali BBQ Media) has been seen by over 25 million people.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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