Last week, Limeade employees heard from two entrepreneurs who inspired us to give gratitude with attitude: MOD Pizza’s leaders and co-founders, Scott and Ally Svenson.
MOD is way more than a pizza chain. Scott and Ally built a people-centric business with a strong mission and purpose to have a positive social impact. Their MOD Squads (restaurants) are all about “spreading MODness.” Employees are committed to paying forward good needs, which causes a ripple effect of positivity.
This “MODness” starts with their admirable hiring ethos. Scott and Ally recruit passionate people who may need an opportunity for a second chance. Whether they’re ex-cons or had a rough transition from foster care, they can find a home and community within MOD.
Here’s what we learned from MOD:
1. Enlightened capitalism is a better way to do business
Pursue the “double bottom line” — focus on doing good while also making money. It’s more fulfilling than just raking in profits and it’s totally possible. Take care of your employees and customers, and the business will take care of itself.
2. Create a playing field with “wide boulevards and high curbs”
Instead of micromanaging, set boundaries with real consequences based on your mission and values (high curbs). But once set, let your employees free. This will empower your employees to take initiative but know the ramifications of jumping a curb. “Mistakes happen all the time — we’re human, it’s our nature. It’s what you do next that matters. As long as you strive to do the right thing, you’ll do well” Scott said. Trust and invest in your team, and they’ll be your culture carriers.
3. Give gratitude with attitude
How did MOD celebrate its birthday week? By spreading MODness, giving back and supporting at-risk youth and families. For each pizza sold that week, they donated $1 to local charities. MOD Squads designated donations to 165 charities that they each cared about — sharing more than $250,000! Showing compassion through action can motivate others to do the same. Scott and Ally discovered that it’s also a powerful business model that gives people a purpose beyond a paycheck.
Our main takeaway? Be a mission- and values-based organization and support your employees’ well-being — that’s where the magic happens.