Then: Franchisee, McAlister’s Deli
Now: Restaurant Consultant; Independent Marketing Director, Team National
It seemed sweet tea was in the veins of Richard Vance. But the McAlister’s Deli franchisee of 14 years got out of the business in 2011.
“Six restaurants and three kids didn’t merge with what I wanted to do for the rest of my life,” says Vance, who started at the first McAlister’s in Mississippi at the age of 19. “Emotionally, it was like a divorce.”
He’s now applying the lessons learned as a consultant to other restaurateurs. Springfield franchisor Great American Taco is among his current handful of clients.
“I teach the anatomy of business,” Vance says of the nine clients he’s helped. “I find your pain points, where you’re bleeding and how to fix it.”
On the side, he earns money as an independent marketing director for Team National, a direct sales outfit.
Now, he says a perk is traveling while he works: “It’s more about the freedom with the kids.”
Atlanta-based Chicken Salad Chick made its Springfield debut; husband and wife Garrett and Rose Cochran opened Heirloom Candle Bar; and mobile eatery Girldad BBQ LLC was launched.