In 2019, our founder published his biography Lino Saputo, entrepreneur. Living our Dreams. In this book, he talks about the values that have guided him since he first set up a cheese making business with the few dollars he had in his pocket, all the way up to the multinational that it has become. Read on to discover three key ideas that can inspire you as an entrepreneur in the restaurant business.
1 - Exceed client expectations
Lino Saputo learned his first lesson by watching his father operate a small cheese business in his native Sicilian village: good service means surpassing customer expectations. For example, he talks about how his father was always generous with the cheese portions he served, and when family members travelled from village to village selling ice cream in public squares, they never hesitated to give people an extra scoop. No better way to build a loyal, satisfied client base!
Going above and beyond also means serving up quality. This is another principle that Mr. Saputo learned from his father, who was extremely proud of the products he sold and his cheeses’ flavours. This approach perfectly sums up Lino Saputo’s vision for business, from his humble beginnings to today.
2- Focus on family values
As is the case for many restaurant owners, your family probably plays an important role in your business. The same was true for Lino Saputo. His mother, who was an essential team member at the factory, loved making cheese so much that she often sang while she worked. Family, passion, and enjoyment are core elements of Saputo’s company culture. And what could be better than a leader who motivates their employees by communicating their passion each day? According to Lino Saputo, the key to a company’s success is to create a work environment that “feels like home” for employees.
3- Sharpen your sense of innovation
No matter the size of your restaurant, following industry trends can be great for business. This is a piece of advice that Mr. Saputo always followed by constantly focusing on the future. Thanks to his innovative nature, his business was able to grow into a world-class operation by diversifying its offering and improving its processes over the years.
Moving forward also means thinking about future generations. For many restaurant owners, this transition can be a challenge. According to Lino Saputo, it is imperative to prepare for this step in order to guarantee that the values underpinning your company’s success are passed on. That’s exactly what he set out to do when his son, Lino Jr., took over as President of the company.
Mr. Saputo’s story proves that beyond business savvy, the secret ingredient for success is to treat your employees and customers like family, and to be courageous with your vision for the future.
The Saputo Foodservice team knows you’re doing incredible work every day. If you haven’t seen it already, check out Our Tribute to Pizzerias!
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