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Episode Info: If you’re in a volume-based enterprise, such as in a restaurant or retail, you’ve got to be ready for challenges and business when they come. In this episode, Flix Brewhouse COO Matthew Baizer, gives a little sneak peek on the different sides of running this business. Bringing his experience from being Director of Franchise Operations of Real Mex Restaurants, Vice President and later CEO of Zao Noodle Bar. He shares some insight on strategies for managing people in the restaurant space. He gives knowledge of the importance and relation of scalability and technology from the COO standpoint. — Matthew is the Chief Operating Officer of Flix Brewhouse. Matthew came to Flix from Real Mex Restaurants, where he was the Director of Franchise Operations for Chevys’ 24 store franchise operation, as well as a region of five company-owned stores, including its Times Square flagship location. His franchise and company stores represented a combined $78 million of system-wide sales. Prior, he was Regional Director of Operations for Chevys with city responsibility for San Francisco, Sacramento, Las Vegas and Phoenix. From 2000 to 2004, Matthew was a Vice President of operation for Zao Noodle Bar. It’s a unique Pan-Asian restaurant concept that grew to ten locations in four markets plus two license outlets on the West Coast. In 2004, he became the President and CEO of Zao, where he remained until 2010. Matthew is a food service “lifer” and he is a 1990 graduate from Cornell University of hospitality with concentrations in food and beverage management. Matthew, Welcome to The Second in Command podcast. Thank you for having me. I appreciate it. I didn’t notice that you were a Cornell grad. I would have been partying at Cornell when you were there. Really? Yeah, I went to school in Ottawa, Ontario. Ottawa was about four hours north of Cornell. There was a bar. There. What’s the bar at Cornell that’s underground? It looks like a bunker or something. A bunker? A little pub. It was a stone wall, tiny, a small underground bar at Cornell on campus. Does that ring a bell? It does not, unfortunately. I spent a long time there and part of my story is that I owned a bar in college town adjacent to the campus. I’m sure it was on campus. I don’t know if that would make sense. I can picture it down the hill from where all the fraternities would’ve been where it was. You’re thinking of the Chapter House. It could be. It was a pub down the hill right in the row fraternities. It sadly got lost to a fire years ago. Did it felt like it was underground? It had the dungeon feel. That would have been the place. I was a part of a group called Acacia Fraternity. We opened up the fraternity in Ottawa. We’re the first fraternity ever in the city. We used to come down to party at Cornell. I remember calling some sorority house trying to track this girl down and I didn’t even have the right name but they still connected me with the girl. We had to do...
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