The leadership of Papa John’s is presently going all over the country visiting its franchises and talking to franchisees and team members to glean ideas about how they can improve as a company. This exploratory team included Steve Ritchie who was officially promoted to CEO of the company on January 1 of this year. Ritchie personally visited stores in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago and Detroit. During this time he said he had some great conversation from employees of all points of view. It had to ask some hard question which he says made for quite a few difficult conversations.
This body of employees included managers, drivers, and pizza makers. In the end, he was convinced that the vast majority of Papa John’s employees are unified with the vision of moving forward. They know that this will mean communication is imperative, that listening to both other employees and to customers will sometimes be hard.
Steve Ritchie Papa Johns has been involved in the pizza delivery business since a teenager in high school when he purchased his first restaurant store for $16,000. He first joined the Papa John’s team in 1996 working at a restaurant first as an order taker, then manager. Then he became the owner of the store in 2006. In 2010 he first started in the leadership area of overall company operations. In 2014 he was promoted to company COO. In 2015 he was made its president. Besides Ritchie other recent hires and promotions include Mike Nettles as its Chief Information and Digital Officer and Brandon Rhoten as its Chief Marketing Officer.
Papa John’s currently boasts about 120,000 employees in 5,000 stores around the world. Papa John’s International, Inc. is headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky as is the third-largest pizza delivery company in the world. Ritchie hopes to lead it to ever greater heights of success.