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9 New Year’s Resolutions from the Franchise Industry’s Leading Executives

Not all New Year’s Resolutions have to do with weight loss and healthy eating. These restaurant executives share their goals for 2017.

By Nick Powills1851 Franchise Publisher
SPONSORED 8:08AM 01/11/17

There’s something special about New Year’s Resolutions—the start of the calendar year is the perfect time to think about what you hope to achieve over the coming months and how exactly you’ll go about accomplishing it.

These resolutions need not be personal, or the usual “I’m going to exercise more,” or “This is the year I finally eat better.” They can be a great way to spur your business into action, too. January is a key month for businesses to set their goals and implement strategies to achieve them in the year ahead.

1851 Magazine recently spoke with nine franchise executives to find out how they plan to make 2017 the best year yet for their restaurants.


CEO Patrick Sugrue 

“Saladworks plans to increase the speed of service in restaurants by testing kiosk ordering, rapid pickup, a new online ordering platform and store reconfiguration.”

Toppers Pizza* 

Founder & President Scott Gittrich 

“Toppers Pizza is rolling out our ‘Show Kitchen’ prototype in 2017. The open kitchen design capitalizes on consumer demand for transparency and quality food while emphasizing these key differences between Toppers Pizza and its fast-food chain rivals. Toppers franchisees will open 14 to 18 Show Kitchen restaurants in 2017, continuing our five-year annual growth rate over 20 percent.”

Philly Pretzel Factory

President Marty Ferrill 

“We're excited to launch an app in Q1 for the rewards program, gift cards and online ordering. We're also looking to accomplish the same store sales increases we've been on trend over the past few years to continue seeing system-wide momentum.”

Pita Pit Inc. 

Vice President of Franchise Development Bill Wilfong

“We will be initiating Pita Pit’s largest digital reconstruction in franchise history beginning in 2017.  This will include challenging our Loyalty, Online Ordering, Website, and Digital Communication channels for better performance. Our Operations Team will be focusing on a new structure called PCOMM in 2017, which stands for People, Customers, Operations, Marketing, and Metrics. We hope to deliver a clear and intuitive business structure to Pita Pit franchisees to help them optimize performance.”

Which Wich 

Founder, CEO & Chief Vibe Officer Jeff Sinelli

“We took great strides in 2016 to hone in on our operations and continue to improve our support of the franchisees that make up our 400+ unit system, including bringing on industry veteran Ric Scicchitano as President in the second half of the year. I'm excited about the plans that Ric and our entire team have laid out for 2017 to further our mission to be the innovation leader in the franchise sandwich industry including a furthered focus on our R&D lab to introduce vibrant flavors to our menu, but also offer unique ways for our fans to enjoy the Which Wich experience with an investment in technology and increased flexibility as we grow the brand in non-traditional spaces and enter new markets in the U.S.”

Checkers* & Rally’s Restaurants, Inc. 

Senior Vice President, Chief Development Officer Jennifer Durham 

“At Checkers & Rally's our resolutions are centered around our detailed "Plan to Win" for 2017, which is focused on serving our franchisees & operators, our restaurant teams and our Checkers Foodie Guests. We're committed to increasing profit growth by 20%, increasing team member retention and growing comp sales by 5% to make our entire brand experience better than ever before.”

Lennys Grill & Subs 

President and CEO Kevin Martin

“In 2017, Lennys Subs is committed to consistency in the positive brand experience it provides guests through its delicious menu offerings and service. Additionally, we will reimage 50 restaurants to Lennys Grill & Subs and roll out a new guest focused point of sale system to all locations.” 

Slim Chickens 

Co-Founder & CEO Tom Gordon

“In 2016, Slim Chickens' leadership team established a purpose-based Mission to bring its mantra of "Life Changing Chicken" to life in every way -- in 2017 and beyond.  By inspiring, engaging and enriching our franchisees and operators to better the lives of their team members and guests each day, as well as give back to the communities we serve, Slim Chickens will continue to develop and transform the culture of the organization to set ourselves apart from the competition and achieve our ambitious growth goals.”

Buffalo Wings & Rings 

CEO Nader Masadeh 

"As we enter 2017, our focus at Buffalo Wings & Rings is to continue to deliver on our promise to provide an elevated sports restaurant experience. We set this in motion more than 10 years ago, and in 2017 we our further refining our model to appeal to families and females including a full revisiting of our chef curated menu, a further commitment to our Buffalove Foundation and efforts to be more of a positive force in the local communities where our franchisees serve, and in further refining our entire development process to make sure that new restaurant owners who join us as franchisees have the very best support in maximizing site selection and through to opening."


*This brand is a paid partner of 1851 Franchise. For more information on paid partnerships please click here.