Sweetgreen is a restaurant chain that is fundamentally changing what it means to be, well, a restaurant chain.
The northeastern based company has been deliver high end salads to diners for the better part of the past decade. Leading the way has been the hard work of a trio of Georgetown University graduates led by co-CEO Nathaniel Ru. Read more: Sweetgreen Entreprenuers | Fortune
Ru is one of the more vocal and prominent CEOs within this particular industry and his work thus far would give many upcoming entrepreneurs the kind of inspiration they need in order to approach the industry in style.
Let’s look at what makes Nathaniel Ru tick as well as what has led to the unbridled success of what should have been just a regional experience. Learn more about Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin: http://www.psfk.com/2016/04/psfk-2016-how-sweetgreen-brought-healthy-and-delicious-to-the-busy-psfk-2016.html
What makes Sweetgreen special is all out in the open. They focus on high quality, local, fresh ingredients and they stay organic as much as possible. Nathaniel Ru says, “We’re creating a brand that stands for something. We want to feed more people better food.”
Ru isn’t being hyperbolic and he definitely isn’t being self-serious. What Ru is being is completely honest. Sweetgreen was established by a trio of idealistic students who wanted to create a company that actually stood for something.
Modeling themselves after Apple they focused on giving customers a unique experience that spoke to their community and wallets as much as their stomachs. The results have been stunning thus far as more than 40 Sweetgreen restaurants now have their doors open within the United States.
Sweetgreen isn’t the kind of company that aims to become McDonald’s. The founders want their restaurant chain to stand for high quality food and local community engagement. In fact, Ru never wants to actually have any sort of corporate headquarters.
There is no hub running this entire operation, just a network of likeminded store managers that stick to Nathaniel RU’s vision. Ru says, “We wanted to decentralize our headcount” before adding, “We don’t believe in big corporate headquarters.”
Nathaniel Ru is refreshingly open about both his shortcomings and his successes with Sweetgreen. When probed on going back in time to get some advice Ru says simply, “We’ve learned it’s important to build a team around you sooner than you feel comfortable doing so.”
Ru is clear-headed and focused on the Sweetgreen experience and thus far it appears that his legions of happy customers are equally happy with the restaurant.