Wray Newsletter Masthead
Big News
The National Restaurant Association projects that restaurants in 2016 will post sales of $782.7 billion and employ 14.4 million people in more than 1 million locations. The 2016 Restaurant Industry Forecast reveals that the U.S. restaurant industry will remain the nation's second-largest private sector employer, providing career opportunities for one in 10 working Americans.

Meanwhile, limited-service restaurants are expected to do roughly $268.9 billion in sales in 2016, which would represent a 5.9 percent sales increase over 2015. Limited-service operators are generally optimistic about the industry, according to the Forecast; 67 percent of fast-casual operators and 63 percent of quick-service operators expect sales to be better this year than last. In addition, roughly three out of four limited-service operators describe business conditions as either "good" or "excellent."  Full Article 

Executive Movements

Hurricane Grill & Wings Welcomes William Richardson as Chief Operating Officer (another stellar Wray Search placement)
Full Article 

Darden Restaurants Announces Leadership Appointments Consistent with a Darden strategic imperative to decentralize the organization
Full Article 

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. Announces Steven J. Fricker as Senior VP of Development. Full Article 

Rave Restaurant Group Inc. on Monday named Bob Bafundo the new president of Pizza Inn. Full Article 

Del Taco Restaurants, Inc. announced the appointment of Jeff Little as Senior Vice President of Development, effective immediately. Full Article 

David Miller Named President and COO of Cameron Mitchell Restaurants.
Full Article 

Bloomin' Brands Inc. named Mike Kappitt the new president of its Carrabba's Italian Grill brand.
Full Article 

More Executive Movements 

Financial Overview

Darden Restaurants, Inc. reported that it expects diluted net earnings per share from continuing operations for its fiscal third quarter ended February 28, 2016, to be approximately 81 to 84 cents.
 Full Article 

Wingstop Inc.'s profit more than doubled for fiscal 2015 on system restaurant growth and increased same-store sales. Full Article 

Zos Kitchen Delivers Strong Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2015 Results. Full Article 

Potbelly Corp. said that its adjusted net income rose 36 percent in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 27.
Full Article 

Total consolidated revenue increased 37.6% to $15.3 million compared to $11.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2016. 
Full Article 

Ruth's Hospitality Group, Inc. Fourth Quarter Total Revenues Grow 5.9%.
Full Article 

More Financial News 

by Bob Gershberg, CEO/Managing Partner Wray Executive Search
Bob Gershberg

Often when defining a concept, it is helpful to determine what it is not. Emotional Intelligence is definitely not what we have seen on the debate stage during the current political season. According to the University of New Hampshire psychology department, emotional intelligence is the "ability to validly reason with emotions and to use emotions to enhance thought." EQ refers to an individual's ability to perceive, control, evaluate, and express emotions. People with high EQ can manage emotions, use their emotions to facilitate thinking, understand emotional meanings and accurately perceive others' emotions. EQ is partially determined by how a person relates to others and maintains emotional control.  
Full Article 

"The difference between successful people and others is how long they spend time feeling sorry for themselves." 

- Barbara Corcoran, real estate magnate and 'Shark Tank' investor

Financial Edge
A Tale of Two Realities - Then & Now
by David Ulrich, EVP Wray Executive Search

David Ulrich
For many years the rise and fall of Wall Street used to be an early indicator of how the economy was likely to perform in the coming six or so months. When the market was on the rise, the economy and the consumer overall was humming along and everything was okay. The Wall Street boom and bust cycle usually showed the high points, aka the roaring 80's until Oct 1987, the tech boom of the 90's, and eventual bust in 2002. What followed during the busts was a period of eight to ten months of a contraction/recession and this cycle can clearly be seen dating back to the Great Depression of the 30's.
Full Article 

See You There!
Eat Like a Local
Four Restaurants That Feed Your Soul in Asheville
by Rebecca Patt, SVP Development, Wray Executive Search

Rebecca Patt
Asheville, NC, is a town that seduces visitors with its restaurants as much as its mountain scenery and culture. I am fortunate to live here and dine out frequently, and I greatly appreciate the passionate and visionary restaurateurs who help give the city its charm. I will share a few special local restaurants I treasure, from well-known favorites to a few less on the tourist radar, to take you through a sublime day of eating: 
Full Article 
Women's Corner
Five Compelling Tips for Women to Succeed in the C Suite
by Jodi Hansell Herczeg, CEO of R2D Beverages Corporation
Jodi Hansell Herczeg

According to the Center for American Progress, women are 50.8 percent of the U.S. population. They earn almost 60 percent of undergraduate degrees, 60 percent of all master's degrees, 47 percent of all law degrees and 48 percent of all medical degrees, 44 percent of master's degrees in business including 37 percent of MBAs. In spite of these great successes, they are only 14.6 percent of executive officers, 8.1 percent of top earners, and 4.6 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs, hold just 16.9 percent of Fortune 500 board seats.  Full Article 
Mindset Management: Targeting What Is Essential
by Dr. Mary Lippitt, author Brilliant or Blunder: 6 Ways Leaders Navigate Uncertainty, Opportunity and Complexity

Dr. Mary Lippitt
Successful leaders have long mastered time management to avoid being swamped by multiple demands and long meetings. Now we need a system to cope with the increasing number of decisions, distractions and complex interactions. Even when you feel like you are drinking from a fire hose, it is smart to separate what is urgent, what is important and what is trending. Recently, Chipotle suffered from a food safety issue, but they are not alone. Many restaurant firms have suffered from excessive expansion, dense menus, pricing problems, weak management, security concerns or a lack of unique market position.
Full Article 

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