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How Walk-On’s new CEO is building a leadership team to scale the sports bar franchise

Chris Dawson has been on the job for only 7 months but has been busy rounding out his C-suite with growth-minded leaders.


Chris Dawson has only been CEO of Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux since last June. But the chief executive — who previously was a group president at Driven Brands, a collection of automotive service franchises — has already made a huge impact on the sports-bar franchise, assembling a C-suite of leaders who can help Walk-On’s tap into its massive potential.

Dawson joined the latest episode of Take-Away with Sam Oches to discuss how restaurant companies can build a leadership team that supports franchise growth and what he learned from several years spent as an executive in the automotive industry.

In this conversation, you’ll learn more about why:

  • Developing your culinary team is just as important as that of other departments
  • The “all things to all people” approach isn’t dead yet
  • If you beat customer expectations, you’ll win their loyalty
  • Data is instrumental to moving a business forward
  • A franchisor cannot take lightly the impact they have on franchisees’ livelihoods
  • The best leadership team is one that has extensive experience in problem solving
  • Your leaders will give you 100% professionally if you nurture them personally

Contact Sam Oches at [email protected].

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