Gusto! founder Nate Hybl and Director of Operations & Strategy Richmond Green announced the Atlanta restaurant brand’s search for local operating partners. Employees of gusto!, these local operating partners are incentivized beyond a yearly salary, empowered as business leaders and charged with driving the success of the new restaurants while also helping create the roadmap for gusto!’s future.

“Gusto!’s Local Operating Partners will be given relative independence to operate their assigned businesses how they choose. They will also partake financially in the success of their restaurants with the incentive to think creatively around even the smallest of details,” says Green. “This is a role that goes beyond a general management position overseeing day-to-day operations; it is a position for someone who is business-minded and has the ability to strategize at a high level about the long term success of the restaurant.”

A recipient of the Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 2018 Pacesetter Award, gusto! is one of the Atlanta metro area’s fastest-growing private companies. The restaurant currently has locations in South Buckhead and Virginia-Highland, locations opening soon in Decatur and West Midtown and anticipates expansion into other regional markets in the near future. Part of gusto!’s responsible growth plan, these Local Operating Partners will have three primary objectives:

  • Operate their restaurant at a high degree of excellence
  • Cultivate meaningful relationships within their local community
  • Act as a positive ambassador for the gusto! brand in these communities

Green has developed the Local Operating Partner program based on his two-year career at gusto! and his prior work experience at Chick-fil-A. He has seen the Chick-fil-A Owner-Operator model in action and the benefits of hiring someone whose livelihood is tied to a single restaurant.

“I’ve witnessed the success of finding highly motivated and ambitious business leaders who can help one or two restaurants be successful as opposed to large corporate franchisees who have 30 restaurants,” he says. “Our product is more than just the fresh bowls and wraps we serve; it’s the entire guest experience. By being focused on just one restaurant, our Local Operating Partners can put their energy into all of the elements of that experience.  They will also be able to focus on hyperlocal marketing efforts and creative methods for growing sales and cutting costs.”

The ideal Local Operating Partner candidate has an entrepreneurial spirit, the ability to think creatively and a proven track record of successfully leading others. Restaurant and management experience is preferred but not required.

“Our company is built on a passion for stepping outside one’s comfort zone and a mission beyond just selling food,” says Green. “We are still a very small business, and it’s exciting to be part of its growth. Our Local Operating Partners will be major participants in our growth strategies moving forward.”

Green adds, “It’s not just about having a significant amount of leadership or management experience; we’re looking for people who have a passion for what they’re doing and a light in their eyes – what we like to call the ‘gusto! spirit.’ These Local Operating Partners are an extension of our culture and our brand in these communities that we care so much about.”

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