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Morgan Lanier or Destiny Thompson
Melissa Libby & Associates
GUSTO! FOUNDER NATE HYBL INVESTS IN TEAM MEMBERS,
OFFERS A HEALTHIER WAY TO WORK
Atlanta’s Most Flavorful Fast Casual Restaurant Creates Counterculture Where Staff
Puts Pride and Purpose Before a Paycheck
ATLANTA (June 27, 2019) – gusto! founder Nate Hybl is looking to touch lives by offering a more positive place to work, a result of “the spirit of gusto” that he’s fostered by putting people first. He believes the restaurant business is the human being business, and this belief is the foundation for how he leads the company. As the Atlanta-based restaurant brand serving fresh bowls and wraps with bold, global flavors prepares to open its fifth location, Hybl’s dream is to have prospective team members knocking on the door asking how they can be a part of gusto!’s culture.
“We have to drive revenue and be profitable, but at the end of the day, investing in the human beings around us makes us a healthier company and allows us to attract quality candidates who are searching for something different,” Hybl says. “That’s the difference we aspire to represent. It’s really hard and it means taking two steps back in order to take three or four forward. Many small business owners are not willing to do this because they see it as losing two percent on the bottom line; we view it as the best investment we can make. We realize we’re just a tiny brand, but if companies like Patagonia, Google, Nike and Starbucks can represent something different, why can’t we? That’s a fun and inspirational idea to contemplate!”
The investment that Hybl speaks of includes above-market compensation, health packages, paid time off, tip sharing, team outdoor adventures, and extra monthly bonuses and rewards. But one of the hardest components to execute, according to Hybl, is ensuring his team members are heard. “It’s a fundamental, simple human need, and it’s arguably more meaningful than money.”
To do so, Hybl puts his money where his mouth is by scheduling “a gazillion meetings,” using Slack channels and ensuring his teams are constantly talking to each other, rare practices in the restaurant business. He also requires his teams to conduct mandatory quarterly reviews and knows these benefit the employee just as much as they do the employer. His team works hard to guarantee that the brand experience at gusto! is as healthy as possible from the first interview to the time he or she departs. gusto! also works hard to avoid negativity in the workplace, and it’s no coincidence that the company’s name stands for passion, good energy and vibrancy. Hybl is very intentional about creating a thoughtful company when it comes to employee culture. He leads transparently and shares financials with his management teams on a monthly basis to nurture growth.
From a leadership standpoint, Hybl and his management team have found striking a balance between leading with grace and with a firm hand to be most effective and most fulfilling. “If you can do that simultaneously then you’re already representing something different than most of the marketplace. This management style surprises new team members…it’s what lights them up,” Hybl says.
Hybl credits the company’s growth and the addition of its Local Operating Partner program in 2018 with furthering these principles. “I’ve learned a lot by watching how Abraham Hagos, our local operating partner at gusto! on Ponce, leads. He’s worked really hard and doesn’t believe in excuses. He’s a great example of how a leader can offer love and support while also maintaining high expectations. Moving forward, our brand clarity has to be strong enough to know who we are, but also fluid enough to continually be leaning into new ideas.”
Nate Hybl founded gusto! with a mission to deliver fresh, flavorful food fast. The underlying passion of his company can be found in its name, which means “enjoyment or vigor in doing something.” gusto! offers a simple menu of bowls and wraps that highlight fresh, high-quality ingredients and bold flavor combinations and don’t hide behind gimmicks or trends. They are served fast and without breaking the bank. With a passionate team that believes in “living life with gusto” and a focus on food, flavor and freshness, the company has attracted a loyal following with its four Atlanta locations. gusto! Peachtree is located at 1935 Peachtree Road NE; (404) 352-4157. gusto! Ponce is located at 782 Ponce de Leon Ave NE; (404) 330-8114. gusto! Decatur is located at 1545 North Decatur Road; (404) 549-8525. gusto! West Midtown is located at 530 17th St NW, Suite 345; (678) 705-4080. For more information, visit whatsyourgusto.com.
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