This morning, I had breakfast at The Flying Biscuit in Charlotte. The story of this restaurant inspires me so I had to share it with you. First, a little about the food. Everything is delicious. How's that for an overview? Seriously, breakfast is served all day and the grits are made with cream and cheese. I allowed myself a tiny tablespoon and nearly melted into the floor. The coffee is fresh and the rosemary potatoes are nicely seasoned.
In 1993, backed by donations, loans and labor donated by friends, Delia Champion, who had been a waitress for many years, and two friends opened The Flying Biscuit's first location in Atlanta. At first, it was only open on weekends, but there were always lines around the block.Eventually, the restaurant hours expanded and new locations opened. Today there are 10 locations spread across North Carolina, Georgia and Florida and franchise opportunities have recently become available.
As I dined, I read a newspaper feature on The Flying Biscuit. In it, the founder shared the secret to her restaurant's success:
As crazy as it is, we try to make all of our decisions coming from a place of love. It sounds so New Age. I can't even believe I say it. But you can make the best decisions for everyone that way. It filters right down through your employees to the customers, and they leave having a good time. It's quirky but it's true. It's really where we come from.
My server, Jessica, was the embodiment of the love that Delia expressed. She was helpful, prompt and friendly. She brought me a free sample of the to-die-for cream and cheese grits, and shared her recommendations for which recipes to try first in the Flying Biscuit Cafe Cookbook. (I plan to start tomorrow with the the Tamari Aioli, a vegetable dipping sauce made with fresh ginger, rice vinegar, Dijon mustard, soy sauce, Tobasco and mayonnaise. I'll let you know how it comes out.)
The love I felt at The Flying Biscuit is the same kind of live I feel flowing through the IBN members I serve and do business with every day. They share Delia's philosophy that when a product or service emanates from a place of love, everyone is happy.
And when everyone is happy, including the owner, the employees and the customers, a business thrives. And when a business thrives, it helps a community thrive. And when a community thrives, everyone's standard of living is raised.
I believe that small and independent businesses like The Flying Biscuit make the world a better place, and I am delighted to see new ones open in communities across the nation every day.
Question: Do you see yourself in Delia's philosophies? What do you think about mixing love and business in this way? How do you feel when doing business with people who come from the “place of love” that Delia described?