‘The Power of We’ leads strategic decisions for the West Coast sandwich franchise
Togo’s new President, Glenn Lunde, loves Togo’s. Not just because he’s the boss. He’s been committed to the sandwich shop since high school, and now he’s sharing the company’s commitment to stakeholders at quarterly town hall meetings. Part get-to-know-you and get-to-know-me, he has been laying out his vision for Togo’s future growth with the goal to keep Togo’s top of mind as a franchisor of choice.
“It’s exciting to work with a brand you’ve grown up loving your whole life,” Lunde said. “Now is the time to emphasize that Togo's is the best place to work, eat, and own. The company’s key stakeholders include four main parties: employees, customers, vendors and franchisees. Together, Togo’s describes them as “The Power of We.”
We are the employer of choice for restaurant employees
We are the restaurant of choice for sandwich lovers
We are the preferred partner for restaurant vendors
We are the franchisor of choice for franchisees
“When making decisions, we consider the potential impact on each of these groups so that we are able to create long term, ‘win-win partnerships,’” said Lunde. “We consider a choice to be good for everyone when we consider the impact on all four stakeholders to make decisions. Then all of Togo’s wins.”
When asked what makes for the franchisors’ success, Lunde feels strongly that the franchisees’ success makes for franchisor success. The company has to support the franchisees in the best way possible to become their franchisor of choice.
“If a current franchisee wants to invest money, they can invest in a lot of different places, but we want them to invest in another Togo’s restaurant. For first time franchisees, we want to be the best choice for them instead of one of our competitors,” said Lunde.
“Customer happiness is also a function of employee happiness,” he reflects. “We need to be the employer of choice so people looking in the restaurant industry choose to work with us. If you want to work at a sandwich shop, Togo’s is where you want to be. It’s not always about pay; it’s also about the training, teamwork, and potential for personal growth that determines the best place to work.”
Next, Lunde emphasizes customers and their happiness with the process, product and store experience.
“Employee excitement translates to guests, our Togo’s customers. We want to provide sandwich lovers big, fresh, meaty sandwiches with taste and quality they won’t find anywhere else,” said Lunde.
Lastly, Lunde is focusing on vendor relations and being transparent to vendors so they can help the franchise move forward.
“We also want to be the preferred choice for vendor partners. It is critical that our vendors understand our vision for the future so they can help us achieve it,” he said.
“How can we best work together so employees want to work at Togo’s, so customers want to eat at Togo’s, so that vendors want to partner with Togo’s, and so Franchisees want to own Togo’s? Culture setting and a win-win mindset are essential. It’s both philosophical and strategic,” Lunde concluded.