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C-Suite of Dunkin’ Donuts – What are You Drinking?

DunkinDonutsI’ve always said that you can only move as fast as your slowest common denominator. When you think of a company like Dunkin’ Donuts that’s a $6.9 billion dollar company, that’s a good-sized business!

What are the leading reasons why this business has become so successful?

What sets them apart from other franchises is that they realized early on that they weren’t in the business of selling franchises. They were in the business of growing their franchisees business.

Another reason the company has become so successful is that they’ve clearly differentiated their business in the last five years. They’ve gone public, doubled their stock price, and have seen 15% growth in operating revenue and 40% in adjusted earnings per share growth. That’s significant!

How have they done this? Through real leadership. 90% of their management team is new within the last 5 years. They’ve got leaders in the c-suite that are focused on the strategy and doing everything they have to in order to implement the strategy.

They’ve also got a cadence, a rhythm. What I mean by that is that the franchisee gets up at 3AM to start making donuts for the day and getting everything ready for the morning rush. The executives in the corporate headquarters do the same. By 5:30AM they’ve got the numbers from the day before and they know what the weather is going to be in Indianapolis, Denver, Austin, or wherever, what impact that will have on their business, and what they have to do to help the franchisee.

To me, that’s really refreshing. I showed up for filming at 6:30AM at the headquarters and typically in most headquarters it’s just myself and the film crew that are there. At Dunkin’, the lobby was full. There was a steady stream of people coming and going and it already had a healthy buzz (although some of it may have been caffeine induced). Nonetheless, it was a cadence of a business that is running, not waiting.

Mayor Frank Bloomberg TelevisionFavorite moment while taping?

First, I couldn’t help not liking everyone. They went out of their way to be nice, but not because they had to, but because they’re just nice. I couldn’t believe how proud everyone is of how and what they do. All the way down to “Mayor” Frank, who mans the front desk and greets everyone by their first name when they walk into the building.

What was really my favorite moment though is when we got lost on the way to the first shoot. We were 30 minutes late to meet with the CEO of the company. And he waited. That, to me, is huge.

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