Nathaniel Ru is one of the co-founders of the Sweetgreen chain of restaurants. Although the café has now spread to over 40 cafés in New York and other cities, it started in a small tavern in Georgetown.
Nathaniel Ru, Nicholas Jammet, and Jonathan Niemen were finance-students at Georgetown University, and they resided near the campus. Many times after school, they would set out to look for healthy eating joints but they would not find any.
The three realized that most of the hotels sold fast foods, which they were not interested in. After campus, they decided they would offer a solution in the community by providing healthy eating solutions. They decided they would found a business called greens, although the name was later changed to Sweetgreen.
While in their last year on campus, they noticed a tavern that was 560-square feet on M-Street and looked for the landlord’s contact. When she heard of what they wanted to do, she hung up on them and refused to pick any of their calls.
The three friends called her on a daily basis for three months, but she never picked any of their calls. One day though, she met them and they explained their intentions. It was in that meeting that she bought into their vision.
She asked them to develop a comprehensive and detailed business plan. She also asked the trio to locate an architect, who would develop the tavern into the desired business.
At the same time, she demanded that they look for people who would sponsor their vision since they lacked the necessary resources. The above was met within 3 weeks when the architect began his work.
Sweetgreen appeals to its customers, who queue to get food as they do new iPhones. The company skips the line by the use of Sweetgreen App where people order and get deliveries to their offices and homes.
The meals have vibrant lettuce, robust cheese crumbles, and tangy dressing. Although the food is high quality, it is also fairly priced. Customers prefer the joint since they can get a healthy meal at the same price they can get a burger and fries.
The Winning Factor
The main value at Sweetgreen is win win win for the company, the customers, and the community.
Every decision that the board makes considers these three stakeholders and ensures that they all benefit from the decisions. If a decision fails to meet the requirement, it is canceled with immediate effect.
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