Bob Lee was an expert in chicken before owning his own Chick-fil-A. For most of his career, he worked at Cargill in their poultry and eggs research, development, and innovation food service sector.
While at Cargill, Bob worked closely with franchisees – partnering with brands like McDonald’s, where he was able to see firsthand the power of franchising and interact with the franchisees and communities who benefited most from the opportunities provided in the franchise business model.
After getting introduced to franchising through the McDonald’s owners, Bob had another opportunity a few years later to work with Chick-fil-A. Once again, he saw the passion for developing people and being part of a community.
Now, as the owner and operator of a Chick-fil-A in Maplewood, Minnesota, he uses his decades of experience in the food sector to manage a successful small business which he has owned for over five years.
Bob shared at a recent Open for Opportunity roundtable in the Twin Cities how franchisees across Chick-fil-A share resources and assets among fellow operators. What one owner does for employee training might be shared as a best practice among all owners, – demonstrating how franchisees are given resources and are part of a team that supports each other’s overall success. It’s always said in franchising, you’re in business for yourself, not by yourself.
Bob’s journey into franchising shows how people from every background have unique skills and knowledge that can be applicable to a variety of roles within franchising. Like Bob, franchisees don’t have to have business, marketing, or accounting experience. They can be teachers, nurses, scientists, and so much more. Bob’s story is a shining example of what it means to be Open for Opportunity.