Written by Thomas Robbins of ROBBINS Construction Group and 2020 Fall Leadership Discovery Participant after hearing from Greg Parker, Founder & CEO of Parker’s Kitchen
Driven by the fear of failure and insecurity, Greg Parker opened his first convenience store never imagining what the back end of his business would become. He has taken his idea of creating a convenience store that is like no other and risen it to the Parker’s Kitchen we know today.
With only 67 stores, Parker’s is an almost billion dollar a year company and one of the top convenience stores in the U.S. – with 1200 employees and over 125,000 transactions daily. Parker’s has seen an at least 21% growth every year for the past 20 years. The company has been included on the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest-growing companies for five years and was recently honored by Food and Wine as one of America’s Best Convenience Stores. With many notable awards, the most recent is the 2020 Convenience Store of the Year Award, a title that Greg and Parker’s Kitchen are proud to hold.
However, this massive success was not how things were from the beginning. Greg comes from humble beginnings as a convenience store owner, where he started out cooking the food, pumping the gas, depositing the money in the bank and not taking a day off for the first 3 and a half years. He jokes that his specialty was the Turkey Reuben. Greg had the determination to create something great.
Greg recognizes a large amount of his success comes from his team and their ability to assist in delivering his vision. He gave the 2020 Leadership Discovery class 4 keys to success that he believes are what has helped him grow Parker’s Kitchen to what it is now.
Greg Parker’s Keys to Success:
1. Build a great team
Take your 5 best friends. This is a collection of who you are. Surround yourself with people you want to be like.
2. Find mentors and build your personal board of advisors
Lead with weakness and learn from others. People like to be asked for advice, be sure to listen and take the advice to heart.
3. Set goals and measure yourself against those goals
If you can make it measurable, you can make it attainable.
4. Define your personal brand and business brand
What do you want to be known for? What do you want your business to be known for?
Greg told many stories about how he not only propelled his company, but changed and challenged the industry such as the impact of his rewards program. Greg frequently meets with like-minded people in his industry to better himself and Parker’s. During his sessions, he emphasized the importance of relationships and supports why they matter.
Thomas Robbins, ROBBINS Construction Group
Participant in the 2020 Fall Leadership Discovery class
Learn more about Leadership Discovery