Episodes

Podcast episode with Brian Hassan of Kickfin, a gratuity streamlining software tech

Ep 48 / Brian Hassan / Cofounder of Kickfin & Gratuity Guru

When Brian and his entrepreneurial partner Justin saw an armored car pull up to a restaurant in San Francisco to drop off cash to pay employee tips at the end of each shift, they knew a change had to be made. That’s how Kickfin was born.

In this episode, Joseph and Brian talk about how Kickfin is revolutionizing the way restaurants pay its employees, tip-shaming and why workers in the hospitality industry really are essential employees.

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Podcast episode with restaurant industry veteran David Abes of DASH Hospitality

Ep 47 / David Abes / Founder of DASH Hospitality & Atlanta Industry Veteran

David Abes started in the hospitality industry as a dishwasher. Thirty-two years later, he’s the owner of DASH Hospitality Group, a management and consulting company for start-up and existing restaurants, hotels, and other food and beverage services.

In this episode of Forktales, Joseph and David dish on technology’s role in the restaurant industry, the hallmarks of a bad restaurant general manager, how restaurants can use social media effectively and why ooey, gooey, realistic food photos are almost always a great idea.

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Podcast episode with Brett Spiegel of Koala - restaurant online ordering and digital techonology

Ep 46 / Brett Spiegel / Cofounder & COO of Koala, Digital Ordering Mastermind

Brett Spiegel is a man who’s dedicated to creating a seamless, streamlined online ordering experience for restaurants. That’s why he co-founded Koala, a company that provides a premium digital ordering experience for more than 4,000 restaurant locations nationwide.

On this week’s Forktales, Joseph and Brett talk about the value of a branded online ordering experience, the importance of recognizing and embracing convergence in the restaurant industry and the exhaustive nature of epic European honeymoons.

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Podcast episode with Richard Pennock, restaurant brand strategist and fractional CMO

Ep 45 / Richard Pennock / Brand Strategy & Fractional CMO

Richard came to America from the U.K. in 2006 and has been leading brand strategy revolutions ever since. Now based in Austin, Texas, his recent experience includes turns as the senior director of marketing of Tacodeli where he led a very successful brand evolution and as the VP of marketing for Freebirds World Burrito.

In this episode Richard shares his thoughts on brand strategy and its role in the brand building and brand evolution process and how technology is shaping modern marketing. He also waxes nostalgic about amazing meals at small mom-and-pop restaurants in Italy.

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Restaurant podcast episode with Gonca Esendemir, cofounder of Flatbread Grill and Thumb Bread

Ep 44 / Gonca Esendemir / Co-founder of Flatbread Grill & Thumb Bread®, Social Media Maven

Gonca is the co-founder and CMO of Flatbread Grill, a fresh casual Turkish Mediterranean concept conceived and developed by Gonca and her two sisters in 2007. The sisters built Flatbread Grill and launched the CPG brand, Thumb Bread, inspired by their Turkish roots and the work ethic instilled in them by their family.

In this episode of Forktales, Joseph and Gonca talk about the hard work of launching a brand, taking risks on social media, and whether Lebanese hummus really is the best hummus in the world.

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Forktales podcast episode with restaurant leader Tommy Yionoulis of OpsAnalitica

Ep 43 / Tommy Yionoulis / Cofounder of OpsAnalitica & Data Lovin’ Operations Expert

In the restaurant industry, data is king. And if data is king, Tom Yionoulis and Opsanalitica are the king-maker. Opsanalitica is an operations data platform that helps restaurants manage and measure human activity and avoid missing the “little things” that can impact profitability.

In this episode, we dive deep on data and its impact on restaurant profitability and talk with Tom about how restaurant owners and managers can put data and analytics to better use to boost the bottom line.

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Podcast episode with Christopher Glenn Founder & Executive Director of Bottleshare and a True Thriver

EP 42 / Christopher Glenn / Founder & Executive Director of Bottleshare and a True Thriver

On January 6, 2018, Christopher Glenn closed up the taproom at Dry County Brewing in Kennesaw, Georgia and hopped in his Jeep for the drive home. While he was parked at an off-ramp, his vehicle was struck by a drunk driver. After a long and painful recovery process, Christopher found his calling and created Bottleshare – a company that gives financial assistance to craft breweries in need. In this episode, Christopher shares his amazing comeback story, talks more about the life-changing work that Bottleshare does and shares a few of his favorite beers.

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Myles Gift VP of Operations at Wing Zone and Honey Q sauce fanatic

EP 41 / Myles Gift / VP of Operations at Wing Zone and Honey Q sauce fanatic

Myles knows wings. More importantly, as the VP of operations at Wing Zone – a restaurant with nearly 80 locations in 25 states – Myles knows how to make great wings on a large scale and serve them up in an atmosphere that makes customers want to come back for more. In this episode, we talk about the hiring and retention struggles facing restaurants and the importance of programs that make employees happy and motivated. We also chat about competing in a flooded wing market and we get a sneak peek at how Wing Stop is using robotics to change the wing-making game.

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Podcast episode with Chad Horn of Devour, cryptocurrency NFT for restaurants

EP 39 / Chad Horn / Co-founder of Devour & Restaurant Crypto Pioneer

Chad is an absolute pioneer when it comes to cryptocurrency and NFTs in the restaurant space. In this episode, he takes the time to break down the basics of the blockchain, crypto and NFTs, how restaurants can capitalize, and what the future looks like in this space. It’s a brave new world and Chad’s company Devour is one you’ll hear about more and more.

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Podcast episode with Samuel Stanovich Chicago Sam of Big Chicken

EP 38 / Samuel Stanovich / A big conversation with the SVP of Big Chicken

From Firehouse Subs to the National Restaurant Association, media personality and more, Sam Stanovich is an icon of the restaurant industry. He has recently taken up post as Senior Vice President of Development at the up and coming brand Big Chicken. You may have heard of it because it’s the passion project of Shaquille O’Neal. In this episode we unpack Sam’s journey, his love for the industry, what’s on the horizon for Big Chicken, and, of course, we talk about the “big guy.”

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Melvin Delacerda, President of Johnny's Pizza House & Empowerer of the People

EP 37 / Melvin Delacerda / President of Johnny’s Pizza House & Empowerer of People

The Johnny’s Pizza House is one of the American Dream playing out from Johnny Huntsman’s first location in 1974 where he introduced the people of North Louisiana to pizza, the whole way to 2022 where the brand is now fully owned by the employees. JPH has been dominating the region for decades with their family-forward, sharing is caring attitude. In this episode, I sit with friend and former client, Melvin Delacerda to unpack the magic that makes JPH a fantastic place to work.

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