Chick-Fil-A, Houston, Tony Levin discussed on Glenn Beck
In. Pet cremation. Out of that stems very very interesting story. We'll visit with him. A funeral for a monkey believe it or not that's all ten o'clock hour joining us now one of my favorites. Tony Levin used to have more access to you and your head coach university Houston than I do. Now. I had to go through marmot almost had to go to Harriet to get hold of the day. Well, it Mike. I apologize. I when you would you called, and I saw you text. I was excited to connect with you. And I'm sorry. It was so it was so difficult to get a hold of me. This is I think a really interesting story though. Because you you you did the coaching thing for many many years, and and you did with coaches football coaches, do you in all over the country? You hit the apex? She became the head coach at university of Houston last year with Purdue before that western Kentucky. I mean, a lot of different places in in a lot of you. You've been all over from the NFL and then last year yet in the pit for me at the end of the season. And you said, okay, let's take a look at this. Maybe there's something else. I can do. And that does not happen. Very often coaches take me through the last few years of your life. And what leads you to becoming a franchise owner of a Chick-fil-A? Well, it's it's it's a good question. My question I've been asked quite often hear almost for the past year. And you know, coaching is something that I did as a profession for twenty two years. I was passionate about it. I I loved every minute of it. We had ups and downs. So we moved as you mentioned quite a bit. I look back and think of living in San Marcos, Texas for three years, and then the Auburn Alabama for two years, I'm interested in Louisiana for eight months, and the story goes on with just a little two and three you're stops along the way, and then we came to Houston coach university of Houston as both an assistant and head coach for seven years. So really a third of my coaching career was spent at the university of Houston, and you know, the last few years, my wife, and is, you know, Mike have four young children oldest thing thirteen and in coaching. It's to say at seven days a week every day of the year is truly an understatement. Level with this gun as you know with recruiting. It's it's day and night, and texting and social media in high school coaches, and parents, and certainly the recruits and then the during the season grind if you will of seven days a week and being at the office from really six AM so past midnight every day in it got, you know, just where for me looking at our children in missing, really everything. They've been a part of the basketball teams them better involved in music play piano or eleven year old now plays the saxophone. So the flag football the basketball soccer. You know, just I was able to take a step back when I was like oh from Houston at the end of the two thousand fourteen season. And again, our children were getting involved in all those types of activities. And and really say is there's something we could do where I could still do what I'm passionate about. Coaching round. But you know, being around people developing a team developing people, helping them achieve their goals and spend the quality time I'd like to with my family in owning a Chick-fil-A has allowed me to do that. You know, again, we've traveled all over the country. My wife's from Alabama. But when we came to Houston, it's a place we fell in love with and wanted to stay if we could so to be able to have my own business now, and we have over one hundred employees. I call them actually team members over one hundred team members there from fifteen years old sixty five years old and everything in between the chance to feel like I'm still putting a lot of the same qualities or characteristics. I had coaching to work in a restaurants, and then on a personal side being able to, you know, spend the quality time I'd like to with my family. Why is it Tony that that most coaches though, as long as they have employment will keep coaching and we'll go anywhere to coach. What what is it? So addicting about it. Well, there's a couple of things. And again, that's a that's a great question. You know, over the course of the last again, I'll say almost a year since I stepped away from coaching professionally and I say that because I'm coaching my kids like football teams right now. But I can't tell you the number of coaches that have reached out to me really with two things one either either. Asking me, how's able to get a Chick-fil-A franchise, or what that transition has looked like because they've been thinking about it, so long or coaches that have said, you know, they they give me a little bit of credit because they thought about it. But didn't know what else they could do. And we're worried about stepping away from from the game. So there's there's things that people say before coaching gets in your blood, and you know, there's a little bit of a rush when you run out the tunnel is one hundred thousand people in the stands your national TV. But you know for me, and I've I've done that I loved it. I have amazing memories. It'll last year by entire life. But for me right now to to the kids bedroom and listen to her eleven year old practices saxophone. I I prefer that right now two hundred thousand people cheering for a football team in do you find a lot of parallels? As you run this franchise. Are you seeing obviously you're still in the infancy stages less than a year? But but do you see similarities assured of a game on Saturday? Absolutely. I do and Chick-fil-A to give one of their franchises to somebody there. They've got a very strict lengthy interview process, and I was kind front with them from the beginning in terms of, you know, my my my kids would debate whether or not I can even make serious. I've not I. Great at making food, and I was trying to explain to them early on. I think I've demonstrated some leadership qualities along the way the ability to assemble a team and manage and develop people, and in, you know, hopefully, instill confidence in people. So there are so many parallels between what we're doing now. And again, I feel like I'm I'm still coaching house was at a meeting last week with about fifty Houston Chick-fil-A owners and one of them said to me, what does it feel like not to coach anymore in my media response was I'm still coaching every day at the restaurant and each day. We'll have close to forty of our team members working, and you know, there's there's different issues that come up in different. You know decisions we gotta make whether it's personnel or whether it's for the growth of our business, and and we've got leadership team, which I kind of see is my assistant coaches that helped me make some of the higher level decision. So there's so many things that. So into it on a day-to-day basis, and then just the competition. So there's certainly there's restaurants around us business around us, the Houston market's actually the number one market in the nation for Chick-fil-A. So there's there's our own competition just miles away from us. So it's I I knew going into it there'd be a lot of parallels to what I've done for twenty two years. And now that I've been in it for really right at six months. That's very very true while I've got you here. How did you turn? And how did the staff turned Purdue a team that had really been a doormat in the big ten in turn it right away last year into a bowl team and this year contending in the big ten west. Well, first of all, I think it starts with Jeff Brown the head coach there in coach Brown, and I go way back to assistance in two thousand and three if university of Louisville, so our family, his family are very close in deserves at least credits at the top. So he. He is a player coach, but he is a football coach and he comes in. And he knows offenses. I'm sure most people are where he calls the plays offensively who studies defense and he's got tremendous knowledge in the kicking game in the players by in to him. So I joined the staff at western Kentucky, and he'd already been there two years. And as soon as I ride I noticed the the buy in that the players had for his culture if you will. And then once we got the Purdue, you know, he the players can tell that he genuinely cares about him. And he really demands, hey, if nothing else we're gonna play hard when I leave the scoreboard. We're going to have a great plan in all three phases. And if we do that, we'll look up when the game's over we'll win more than we live, and that's really what they've done. And you know, when you look back at some of the experts when they look at recruiting rankings over the year. I think what the former staff Purdue might have been last in the big ten in four or five years. Leading up to coach Brown and staff taking over now, you're gonna half ago, and you know, offensively he does some things where they're gonna have a chance to be aggressive and put points on the board. So with the big ten kind of being a little bit more run oriented. It'd be able to stop the run and be a little bit more low scoring when when he's able to put points on the board gives them a chance every week last question how you know one of the things that you mentioned the scoreboard, and it's easy to define yourself in football because on Saturday you figure out if their game plan worked or not sometimes in retail or operation like Chick-fil-A. You don't know from day to day, you get a number for sure, you know, your your sales your gross sales. But you're not quite sure if that number was an aberration. Where did you just happen to be? The high school band stopped by with hundred people. I mean, there's lots of variables you that. You don't control how how do you define winning and losing in the retail industry, so to speak versus football, another excellent question. Yeah. So in in one thing that's different is for me. At least is the pace of this because we're open every day during the week but Sunday's AAA closed on Sundays. And it's and it's game day every day. So the Chick-fil-A especially in the Houston market, and and they're getting up into the twin cities. I know there's a couple of them. Yes. But but it's very popular here. And now, you're exactly right. I don't I don't measure our success by sales certainly some owners of of of any business measure their success by sales. But for now, it's it's I want our guest to have a great experience. Enjoy the food. You know, it is quick service. So they don't want to be waiting very long for to get their meal if you will. But you know, if they have a good experience, they give us positive feedback. That's what we're striving for. And we think you know, the rest will take care of itself. I miss you. Big fella down there does that mean. I might get a free fry at least if I come in. No, you know, we'll have a special day. Fries free. Yes. Let me know if you're coming down, and I will let you know the next time we're back in the twin cities. I promise you promised me. Always good. This is good. Visit with your father Marv last night as well catch up by that guys are just dynamite. And your brother Jeff had a concert last night that they were going to your nephew, his son. Of course, he's the band director at Jefferson there. So it's a it's a great family, and it's always fun to connect with you continued success, and we'll talk soon. And I look forward to the next time. Mike, thank you so much. You bet. Tony levin. Fascinating story leaving coaching in in opening a franchise a Chick-fil-A franchise. Well, thanks, take a break. Come back. Ponder that. We'll talk about pet cremation in the ten o'clock hour plus some nine to noon. Zoom..