Calling my dad out on his texting skills—it’s his day
There are times I wish my dad was a texter. My 86-year-old father, Herb, can email, and surfs the Internet fairly well, plus he has a Kindle Fire, where he hooks up to wireless to check the baseball scores and other news of the day. It’s not like he couldn’t learn to do it. It just doesn’t interest him, nor does it my mother.
But it would interest me if he did. I imagine texting him something quick, like when I’m running late on the way to visit him and my mom, about 90 minutes away. You know, quick things. So I don’t have to call.
I guess it’s OK. I don’t want to admit it, but we’ve all lost a little bit of the joy of interpersonal communication due to the almighty text. Because I can’t text him, I call. And then he, my mom and I have a conversation about what The Donald said today, the new recipe they served for supper or what cousin Jean’s kids did for her birthday. Likewise, I amuse them (at least I think I amuse them) with my daily exploits, updates on their grandkids and what my husband, Doug, is doing in the garage, again. If we texted, some of those conversations wouldn’t happen. And I would miss them.
FT Associate Editor Tom Kaiser’s article on Wingstop CEO Charlie Morrison made me think of this when I read what frustrated the chief exec most: cell phones in meetings. “Today we tend to over communicate, we’re trying to multi-task constantly…there are times when you have to listen, observe, get a feel for the business, talk to people,” he told Tom.
He’s someone I would listen to: Morrison says simplicity is the key to the brand’s success. With two stock offerings, multiple quarters of same-store sales growth, 130 new stores and international growth, he pulls it all together nicely in a tech-savvy world. You’ll want to read his story, and see how he manages one of the hottest franchise brands going.
What’s really fun is we’ve paired Morrison’s story with that of Antonio Swad’s, who graces our cover. FT Editor-At-Large Nancy Weingartner spent some time with the man who founded Wingstop. Imagine deep fryers in his living room, as he fried and sauced wings to come up with just the right combinations. Surely he didn’t know back then what Wingstop would become? Nancy gets personal, and we find out what drives the man from Texas. He’s not done growing businesses. Not by a long shot.
Because wings aren’t the only franchised mainstay, three staff members took one for the team to get you a story on hot dogs that you’ll really relish reading. I love the round-up Tom, Editor-in-Chief Beth Ewen and Staff Writer Nick Upton produced on one of America’s most loved, and hated(?), foods. They ate a lot of hot dogs so you won’t have to—all in the name of giving our readers information to make their lives better.
We also get serious, with Beth’s Continental Franchise Review column covering the bathroom-use controversy that started in North Carolina, but is taking hold in other parts of the nation. There are passionate arguments from both sides, and if you own a franchise, what should you do? As Beth realized as she researched the column, it is a little more nuanced than she originally thought.
This month’s issue also has an update on the state of restaurant IPOs, sub chains that are more than “just buying a job,” and a Q&A with one multi-unit operator who continues to take risks in big ways, as long as they are calculated.
You’ll want to read it cover to cover. Old school, from front to back. No technology required.
P.S. Happy Father’s Day. To you, too, Dad!