Chick-fil-A fast food, a southern favorite, began in 1967 within the Greenbriar Mall food court in at Atlanta suburb. The first free standing franchise opened in April 1986 in the same city, and customers have only grown to demand more locations since — and the reason why is obvious, at least to those who understand the Christian enterprise’s appeal.
As of 2016, there are 31 drive-through-only and 1,950 traditional free-standing Chick-fil-A’s in America. They are also in hospitals, universities and airports as well. Suffice it to say this fast food franchise has found immense success yet have gone about doing business differently than other restaurants.
The most notable difference between Chick-fil-A and other fast restaurants is the fact that they have a well-trained staff, and close on Sundays. To close all day, every Sunday, one day of the weekend, seems counterintuitive. After all, Saturday and Sunday are typically the most profitable days for restaurants. However, Chick-fil-A has maintained a high level of success despite the loss of Sunday revenue. In addition to this difference, Chick-fil-A has a commitment to a high moral standard. This is likely due to the influence of the company’s founder, S. Truett Cathy, who was a devout Southern Baptist.
A recent report from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) found Chick-fil-A to be the highest rated fast food restaurant in America. According to the Christian Post, the ACSI accumulate these numbers by polling 222,522 customers who are asked to rate restaurants on a 100-point scale. Chick-fil-A came out with a score of 87, which puts it at the top of all other fast-food restaurants when it comes to customer satisfaction. This is the third year in a row in which Chick-fil-A has set high atop the ACSI’s list. It’s worth noting that prior to Chick-fil-A’s arrival on the scene, no restaurant had received a score higher than 86.
The company’s religious history and commitment to remaining closed on Sundays is well-known. However, the restaurant also prioritizes customer service as part of their values, which sets them apart. Being in a restaurant and hearing “it’s my pleasure” from the cashier when asking for a refill or putting in an order is commonplace. Also, the restaurant strives to keep their dining areas clean and well stocked. ACSI believes Chick-fil-A’s “product focus” is the primary reason for their continued success. After all, one of the franchise’s slogans is “We didn’t invent the chicken, just the chicken sandwich.”
Whatever the reason behind Chick-fil-A’s dominance of the fast food market, this is no doubt they are a step above other restaurants.
Perhaps, even more important than their commitment to making the best chicken sandwich, keeping drinks refilled or their dining room swept and orderly, is Chick-fil-A’s commitment to “serving” customers in a unique way.
“We should be about more than just selling chicken,” the company’s founder said. “We should be a part of our customers’ lives and the communities in which we serve.”
Chick-fil-A is also different in the way they handle moral issues. Those in power at Chick-fil-A have no problem taking a stand, even if that stand is politically incorrect.
Dan Truett, who is the founder’s son and current CEO of the franchise, made it known that he personally only supported the traditional definition of marriage: that being between one man and one woman. The backlash for this controversial comment was immense. Many took to social media to try and tried to boycott the franchise. Other people in power felt pressured to “take a stand” either with Chick-fil-A or against them.
One would assume that all this controversy would cause a financial hit, even force the company to close some of their franchises. However, if anything, the opposite has occurred — Chick-fil-A remains just as popular as ever. What’s more, those who are fans of the franchise and the Truett family are proud of them for taking such a stand in today’s left-leaning, immoral society.
Presently, Chick-fil-A is the highest grossing restaurant (per establishment) in all of America. Therefore, one can conclude that being moral, taking a stand, being faithful to God’s ways, promoting the art of service is not only what makes Chick-fil-A different, but it’s a great way to run a hugely successful business in America today.
~ 1776 Christian