Today, Part of living is not only by exercising more but by eating healthy. Nathaniel Ru together with two of his college mates set out to feed people with healthy food.
Consequently, they started Sweetgreen, a restaurant that serves fresh and organic food. Additionally, the idea of starting the restaurant business was inspired by the lack of healthy food options in Georgetown.
Today, Sweetgreen has grown to over 40 locations. The restaurant mission is to feed people with a variety of healthy foods. As a result, their mission has enabled them to grow as is evident by the large crowds that eat at Sweetgreen locations.
Nathaniel Ru has adopted a decentralized strategy that has gone further to help them grow. The operating model allows each restaurant to be independent of a single headquarters.
As a result, the corporate employees work from a different location at different times of the year. The model enables even the CEO to understand the challenges faced by every restaurant. Additionally, it allows them to address issues from a local point of view.
The unique model of operation enables each diner to address challenges considering the domestic market. At the infant stages of the business, Nathaniel did most of the work. However, he managed to enlarge the team and fill up most of the critical positions.
Ru credits the restaurants’ rapid growth with the hiring of top talented individuals. Additionally, the environment and empowerment offered to the employees enable them to work to the best of their abilities.
At a recent conference, Ru said that there are the essential elements of building a brand. Customer satisfaction came first among the Sweetgreen initiatives. Sweetgreen basis its operation by establishing a connection between the customers and the food they eat. Creating a social experience helps to attract and retain customers. The corporate employees have given independence to location managers.
The flexibility allows them to adapt to the local customer’s preferences. Besides the seasonal delicacies that keep customers coming back, Nathaniel collaborates with top artists and producers to bring Sweetlife Festival. It’s a festival that celebrates good food and music. Vendors committed to sustainable growth and healthy diets line to feed the people present.
Besides being an entrepreneur in the food industry, Nathaniel Ru is a highly sought-after speaker. Invitations to attend business conferences keep finding him due to his perspective on growing long-lasting brands. Ru has adopted the latest tech in service delivering but is mindful of the fact that success comes from building trust and human connection.
Recently, Ru featured in Forbes magazine as one of the 30 Under 30 top leaders in the food and wine industry.