How Steve Ritchie Has Demonstrated Smart Leadership
When a major company undergoes a crisis and then
changes leadership, it is vital that the person now in charge demonstrate an
ability to reach out to both customers and employees. That is what Steve
Ritchie, new CEO of Papa John’s Pizza, did
recently. In an open letter to both groups, he attempted to explain not only
how previous mistakes were made, but more importantly how he and the company
will move forward to once again gain the trust of its customers.
In being with Papa John’s Pizza for 22 years,
Steve Ritchie used his knowledge
of the company and current
corporate culture to reassure customers as well as employees that while tough
decisions have been made in many areas, Papa John’s is committed now more than
ever to establishing a culture of inclusion, diversity, and opportunity. By
making these areas a top priority, Steve Ritchie has laid the
groundwork for he and other company executives to begin the process of
reestablishing trust with all customers.
As many business experts have pointed out, Steve
Ritchie did something very important with his letter to customers. Rather than
simply attempt to say all the right things to appease those customers who have
been disappointed in the company, Steve Ritchie laid out a detailed process of
how positive change will take place. Among his main goals for the company are
bringing in outside auditors to evaluate the company’s culture and diversity, identifying strengths and weaknesses. Along with this, he also committed to having he
and various other senior management staff travel the country to visit many Papa
John’s Pizza franchisees. By doing so, management will be able to speak
directly to those who interact with customers on a daily basis, thus gaining a
greater understanding of how problems can be solved.
But perhaps most importantly of all, Steve
Ritchie pledged to Papa John’s customers that the company, from the top on
down, will be committed to transparency and accountability. By making this promise, it is clear Steve Ritchie is determined to
take the company in a new direction that will produce positive results.