Franchisee Spotlight – Q&A with Mickey Chance of Golden Corral
What is your background? What did you do before owning your two Golden Corral restaurants?
I opened my first restaurant in Durham, NC in 1969. It was a steakhouse and pizza place. I converted the steakhouse to a calabash seafood restaurant in the early 80's. I sold off the original place and concentrated on a new concept as the market and economy became challenging in the mid 80's. I was looking for and found a stable home with Golden Corral’s corporate offices. I became a partner manager in 1986 in Durham and later took over the unit in Research Triangle Park. The restaurant became one of the highest profit and sales units in the company. I took over the Wilmington NC unit in 1999. In 2005 the opportunity to franchise the store became available, and then my son David and I decided to open a second unit in Shallotte, NC in 2012.
What led you to pursue ownership of a Golden Corral?
The overall strength of the Golden Corral brand. There were many benefits, such as the ownership and leadership, stability, and the systems they have in place.
What are some of the unique benefits and challenges you face in owning restaurants in tourist areas near the beach in North Carolina?
Our unit in Shallotte tends to be more seasonal, increasing business around 30-35% in-season. Staffing is our biggest challenge in-season. The Wilmington unit sees modest seasonal increases, but remains strong most of the year. We have embraced our year-round base and have grown that business year after year.
What is the best part about owning a Golden Corral restaurant?
The brand gives you instant creditability, the uniqueness in our sector of the industry, and the opportunity to affect so many people's lives positively!
What are your goals and plans for the future?
David has been operating the business with me since 2012. We have been working out a plan to have me less involved in the day-to-day operations. It will be David's decision on the future direction of Chance Hospitality, Inc. in the future. I feel comfortable in the direction he will guide us.
What would you tell prospective franchisees about owning a business?
Owning a business isn't easy. If it was everyone would do it. You have to be diligent, resilient, and committed to make it work. It is surely rewarding when your hard work and dream becomes a rewarding reality!