I'm the CEO of P.F. Chang's. My day starts with a 5 a.m. workout and ends with a cigar on the patio — here's what my work routine is like.
Robin MadellJul 13, 2022, 01:19 IST
I start my mornings with a 5 a.m. workout, typically a run through my neighborhood in north Scottsdale, Arizona.
I've been intermittent fasting since 2020, so I don't eat breakfast. But I will enjoy a cup of coffee with grass-fed butter, heavy cream, and MCT oil.
At around 6 a.m., I'll review daily financial and operational reports from my home office before heading to our global support center in Scottsdale.
My commute is typically about 20 minutes long. I like to arrive at the office by 7:30 a.m. My daily commute here is a distinct change from when I lived and worked in New York two years ago.
I take a few calls on the road to maximize my time. When I get the chance, I listen to music. Today, it was the new Drake album, "Honestly, Nevermind."
Our office has plenty of solitary space mixed with communal areas. I especially enjoy the windows — the natural lighting brings me tremendous energy. There are nice touches that really ground me in our brand, including replicas of the warriors and horses that decorate our restaurants.
One of my favorite decorations is the red-and-white Lucky Cat on a shelf above my desk. It's a sign of good luck in Japanese culture.
My personal office is set up to align with my open-door policy. There's space for small-group huddles and, of course, my desk area for dedicated work.
I regularly visit our restaurants for meetings with our chefs and field teams. I want to find out what they're seeing on the ground. By being there, I'm able to send a very strong message that the executive leadership team cares about what they're doing and is highly invested in making their jobs easier and better.
For example, when we test our limited-time holiday-menu offerings in select markets, we receive feedback directly from guests and team members, helping us optimize before the national launch, so we can provide the best possible experience.
I work with my executive assistant to make sure my calendar is always up to date so I can easily do a quick check to see what the day holds. I use a simple Word document to track my priorities. I also always have a notebook on me to take handwritten notes in meetings.
I'm focused on providing clear quarterly action plans and ensuring day-to-day alignment from department leads and restaurant teams on projects like restaurant remodels, driving our digital off-premises business, preparing for more restaurant openings, and supporting our global franchise partners.
My workday often extends to the evening, where I may have dinner planned with partners, directors, or executive team members. Otherwise, I enjoy going to Suns games, where I've become a season-ticket-holding superfan, and the Phoenix Symphony, where I've joined the board.
If I'm relaxing at home, I love to unwind with a novel or enjoy one of my favorite cigars along with the incredible Scottsdale views on my patio.