How One Multinational Restaurant Chain Created Accountable Managers


A multinational restaurant chain holds coveted global brand recognition in an intensely competitive market. Despite intense competition, they continue to grow with 19K restaurants in over 100 countries.

This chain gives its Restaurant General Managers (RGMs) a key gift that sets them apart: the autonomy to operate like restaurant owners and own their workplace culture with accountability. But RGMs face stiff external competition and the never-ending shift in customer trends and desires.


To help RGMs become truly autonomous and own their business results, the Corporate Education team identified the need for business acumen. They created a Restaurant General Manager University (RGMU) training series. This included workshops on leadership, customer focus, and business knowledge.

Leaders chose Zodiak®: The Game of Business Finance and Strategy to prepare their RGMs for analyzing key financial and operational data. “Business Realities,” a simulation designed by our Zodiak creation team for them, engaged restaurant managers to tackle business obstacles involved and draw conclusions about the strategic direction of the company. Our Zodiak team also developed a simulation that took RGMs through financial and operations reports, providing them with hands-on experience during the analysis section of the course. The team also certified an internal facilitator to train other associates during RGMU. This chain’s RGMU has now been replicated for their RGMs worldwide.


Now I know why the home office makes the decisions that they do.

  • RGMs gained business acumen to strengthen their culture and drive closer to results during the pilot tests of Zodiak (as one RGMU testified, above).
  • Zodiak and “Business Realities” were the two top-rated components of this chain’s RGMU program and have now been integrated into their Area Manager University program.
  • Zodiak has been implemented as part of other courses for crew members as well as restaurant supply and distribution personnel.
  • According to one former director of training effectiveness for the chain’s parent company, RGMs have used a connections component offered by our team following Zodiak to help them identify low-hanging fruit. This has led to profit improvement opportunities ranging between 0.5 and 3 percent.

Read more about the crucial role of business acumen in strengthening your culture.

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