Anthony Esposito talks about the advantages of being in a family business when it comes to innovation.
Instead of carving time out for innovation, I think innovation should be a continual process. Innovation should be something in the back of your mind 24/7, every single day you are working and every single day you are at home. Innovation is crucial to succeeding in business because if you don’t like innovation, then a famous quote it, you’re going to like irrelevancy even less. Because if you don’t innovate, you’re not going to survive. And in the grocery industry specifically for my family business, we see that a lot of these big chains with a lot of the bureaucracy they have, it’s hard to really innovate because there’s so many layers they have to go through, and so many stores they have to implement it in. Us, starting out with one store, one family, no bureaucracy, a very flat organization, it’s much easier to implement this innovation, so that being said, my father, who is turning 64, and myself who is 21 and my oldest brother who is 29, we’re much younger and we have a fresher, more innovative, more hip vision of what a grocery store should be like and what the experience should be like. So my father’s been very, very understanding, very open to a lot of ideas, and we’re going to make sure that with the first store and hopefully the many other stores we open later, we include innovation as, like I said, a continual process. When it comes to bringing up new ideas to our family, I think it’s more casual than anything. My father has always had one of those Samsung flip phones, for years, and recently he upgraded to an iPhone, and because of that, I know this sounds a bit irrelevant, but because of that we have a family chat on iChat, iPhone, so all 7 of us talk all the time. So because of that chat, we’re able to share articles easier, we’re able to take picture of other concepts we like and share them easier, and we’re really able to get everyone’s input at the touch of our finger tips. So I wouldn’t say that’s something that’s many layers to show my father or show my family ideas, I’d say it’s much more open, we just send a text, talk to him when he’s at home, talk to him when he’s at work and he’s very open to listening.