Who are you and What do you do?
My name is David Weill and I am the franchise owner of Steak n Shake. A few things that I am responsible for that help the business grow are financial responsibility and marketing. I also help employees maintain a positive culture in the restaurant. Anything that you could think of that helps improve the business is what I do. I love being a franchise owner of Steak n Shake!
How did you get the idea for your business?
Steak n Shake was already in business so I did not come up with this business plan. However, I got the idea of being a franchise owner while I was attending a soccer banquet. Someone told me about it, and I got all the information I needed to get started and went from there!
How did you make your first sale?
From a personal standpoint, I sold my truck and hopped into this great investment. Starting out, I worked for free for a particular amount of time then started in March when covid-19 hit. From a catering perspective, places like Smyrna hospital and car dealerships are where we made a lot of money for catering.
What is unique about owning and running a business in Murfreesboro?
Being a franchise owner in Murfreesboro is very unique because it’s constantly growing. Usually, someone would say that they hate traffic but I like it because I see how it’s expanding. The more people moving to a particular spot is always great because that is a potential customer!
How do you advertise your business?
The way I advertise my business is by networking throughout the community. I like to go to events and anytime there’s a new officer or business, I like to get out that we do catering. I want the community to know that Steak n Shake is still alive and well and offers a great experience in and out of the restaurant.
As a business owner, what keeps you up at night?
Changing the culture in the business and dealing with covid is something that kept me up at night. It’s different when you’re a manager to when you’re a franchise owner because you look at more details since you invested your time and money into it. I want to make a great working environment for everyone so they enjoy their job as much as possible. Another thing that keeps me up at night is text messages. It seems like everyone has my number so I will constantly get messages from people. Overall, I just want to make everything run smoothly in this company for all people involved, especially our customers!
What is one way you’ve had to pivot or change course to grow your business? What led to you making that decision?
Covid was a big struggle and we had to work around that so the drive-thru really did help with sales. Investing in my employees helped me grow the business!
If you could wave a magic wand and make one problem go away in your business, what would it be?
I would honestly say the outside factors such as the pandemic and improving the business model!
If you could time travel back to the day you started your business, what advice would you give yourself?
I would say that I wouldn’t be so lenient with certain things such as calling out and attendance. It is understandable that things happen in life but if there is a particular pattern that an employee makes then something has to change. It is important to have great attendance in a business and overall have employees respect the business itself by doing their job the best way they can!
Where do you want to go with your business?
I would like to let people know how much we have improved and spread the word about our catering to expand sales and help with marketing!
What’s the one thing you’re doing right now from a marketing perspective that’s getting you more customers? (We’re looking for ideas that other business owners could borrow)
I would say that getting out in the community and networking with people is something that I’m doing from a marketing perspective that has gotten me more customers.
What’s one business lesson you’ve learned that you’d be willing to share?
If you invest in the people that work for you then you’re investing in your company! That is one thing I would share with other business owners!
What’s a podcast, book, or website you’d recommend that has inspired you to grow your business?
A book I would recommend would be QBQ Book by John G. Miller.
What do you use for your daily to-do list?
I use pen and paper for my daily to-do list!
What social media tools do you use that other business owners could use? (For posting, for graphics, phone apps, etc.)
Canva is a great social media tool for business owners that I would recommend!
Learn more about Steak and Shake by visiting their website!