Industry Veteran has Designs on the Expansion of the Authentic Southern Barbecue Franchise Company
David Allgood’s love affair with barbecue goes all the way back to childhood, when one of the first things he learned to cook was barbecued chicken on a charcoal grill. Many years (and many well-used smokers) later, and the seasoned foodservice industry veteran feels as though he has come full-circle. Boasting turns as Director of Operations for a multiunit franchisee in the HoneyBaked Ham Company and Café system, National Field Training Manager and Regional Director of Operations over 400+ franchised Quiznos Toasted Subs restaurants, and Corporate Sr. Director of Culinary Operations for SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, Allgood now joins the leadership team at Jacksonville-based Woody’s Bar-B-Q in the role of VP of Operations.
“I am passionate about great food and in particular barbeque,” said Allgood. “Woody’s offers me the opportunity to pursue the things I enjoy the most about the restaurant industry. Add to this, the experience I have gained from two franchise systems, having been on the franchisee side of things, as well as working directly with franchisees across the U.S., and it is a perfect situation where I can utilize the operations experiences I have gained, in conjunction with a bottom-line focus, to drive great results.”
In his role as VP of Operations for Woody’s Bar-B-Q, Allgood will be responsible for: partnering and consulting with the company’s franchisees on a regular basis; fostering and furthering enhanced corporate communication across the franchisee community, with emphasis on operational process and procedure change, menu development, guest experience drivers and marketing initiatives; providing leadership and direction of field support team; coordinating the selection and development of training team members, to deliver the necessary foundation in operational expectations for new franchisee learners; coordinating new restaurant openings, to include site selection and location design, during the development phase; driving weekly and period-end results that focus on controllable drivers, with a goal of delivering better returns for the operators; working with key members of the corporate team to develop traffic-driving marketing initiatives; and partnering with the co-founders of the company and key leadership team to define the “go-forward” strategy for the chain.
“Over the next five years, we will look to not only grow the brand through adding engaged franchisees and restaurant openings, but will focus on operational processes and procedures that enhance the continued offering of some of the best barbecue around,” explained Allgood. “In addition, we will field a support team tasked with delivering learning opportunities for new and existing franchisees that will give them every opportunity to understand the business drivers in operating their restaurants.”
What first drew Allgood to Woody’s Bar-B-Q was the food, which he describes as something of which co-founders Yolanda Mills-Mawman and Woody Mills can be truly proud. He was also impressed by the brand’s longevity and the fact that the original founders are still involved in the daily operations of the company. With 35 years to its credit, he believes that it’s clear there is a solid foundation in place at Woody’s Corporate Office. This provides the vision and focus to introduce the concept to a new generation of prospective franchisees and barbecue fanatics.
“When it comes right down to it, it really is all about the food and the people,” said Allgood. “Food has the ability to not only satisfy someone’s hunger, but – when it is outstanding – to elevate the experience into something truly remarkable. Add to this, the people who deliver the food and enhance the dining experience. The people side of the business is just as important as having great food. They are the pivot point that determines whether someone simply leaves no longer hungry or whether they leave knowing that not only will they come back, but they will tell their friends about the food and service they received. In addition, it is about getting to interact with the guests who come into the restaurants. By talking to and listening to them we are afforded an opportunity to hear firsthand from those supporting the business. This is genuinely the direct path to understanding what it takes to be successful on a continual basis.”
Individuals who wish to learn more about becoming a Woody’s Bar-B-Q franchisee are encouraged to visit http://www.woodys.com/franchise/.
After opening their first Woody’s Bar-B-Q in 1980, partners Woody Mills and Yolanda Mills-Mawman have spent the past three decades setting the “bar” higher for great Southern Bar-B-Q. From the humble beginnings of just one location in Jacksonville, Florida, a shared passion for Bar-B-Q, and a dog-eared collection of recipes, Mills and Mawman have grown the Woody’s Bar-B-Q brand to locations reaching from the Deep South where Bar-B-Q is king to the Northeast and Western fronts. Perhaps best known for their legendary melt-in-your-mouth slow-smoked Signature Baby Back Ribs, Woody’s has also built quite a following among patrons with their secret recipe Bar-B-Q sauces and meats, as well as their freshly prepared comfort food-inspired side dishes. For more information and a list of locations, visit http://www.woodys.com.