The Business Club at Minnesota School of Business – Plymouth Campus recently took advantage of a unique opportunity to learn more about Chipotle. It is hard to find someone without a positive opinion of the fast-casual dining chain. In fact, the location on Wayzata Boulevard in Wayzata, Minn. has become a very popular spot for students at the Plymouth campus.
Armed with this information, business club members ventured out to find out what makes Chipotle so popular? General Manager Jerry Eaton hosted the Business Club and provided insight into the driving forces behind Chipotle.
Chipotle started as a one-store operation in 1993 and today it has 1500 locations with 37,300 employees and annual revenues of $826 million. Chipotle is most noted for the invention of the fast-casual dining sector and the use of the best possible organic ingredients. The company takes a food-with-integrity approach and this is only part of what makes Chipotle different than the typical fast food establishment.
“Chipotle is more than a food company. It is a people company,” said Eaton. “We are all about providing a great dining experience for our customers and we are all about providing great investment into our employees.”
The students were impressed with the detailed career paths offered by the company and the small amount of time it takes to progress through the system.
“We invest in our employees a ton. Here we encourage mistakes and immediately correct them,” said Eaton. “That is how you learn. That is how you grow.”
The MSB – Plymouth Business Club discovered that the keys to Chipotle’s success include great ingredients and great people. It seems like such a simple notion, yet not everyone can do it.
“I found the trip to Chipotle to be very informative, very fun and I really enjoyed the food.” said accounting student Elizabeth Charbonneau. The students now have a new found appreciation for what goes into making their favorite burritos and the growing business behind it.
Written by: Tiray Johnson, Business/Accounting Program Chair at Minnesota School of Business, Plymouth