What You Can Learn From Burger King’s Whiz-Kid CEO

What You Can Learn From Burger King's Whiz-Kid CEO
Daniel Schwartz
Burger King’s new CEO, Daniel Schwartz, is 32 years old and running a company that he, at least on paper, has no business running. He came from Wall Street and has no restaurant experience. The results he is getting, however, are impressive. In the first quarter of this year, the company, which has struggled in recent years, posted same-store sales increases of 2 percent, while net income nearly doubled to $60.4 million, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.

What we can learn from Schwartz’s unlikely rise to the corner office is that talent, sometimes more than experience, can solve big business challenges. Burger King has experienced a total restructuring in Schwartz’s 13 months on the job.

“I don’t focus on how much experience they have,” Tom Garrett, CEO of GPS Hospitality, which has purchased 61 Burger King franchises from the company since 2012, tells Bloomberg Businessweek. Schwartz and his executive team “are extremely smart, which makes them very, very fast learners.”

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