Nick Sarillo

Entrepreneur, Speaker & author of "A Slice of the Pie: How to Build a Big Little Business"

Nick Sarillo is the founder, CEO and “primary keeper” of the Purpose and Operational Values of Nick’s Pizza & Pub – the sixth busiest independent pizza company in per-store sales in the United States. Founded with the purpose of providing the community with an unforgettable place where families could relax and have fun, Nick’s Pizza & Pub has margins nearly twice that of the average pizza restaurant and boasts an 80 percent employee retention rate in an industry in which the average annual turnover is nearly 150 percent. Nick credits his company’s success to his purpose-driven culture, which is the focus of his new book, A Slice of the Pie: How to Build a Big Little Business (Portfolio; 2012).  Nick is a regular speaker at entrepreneurship, leadership and HR conferences. His insights have been featured in The New York Times, The Economist, Inc., Fast Company and Investor’s Business Daily.

To book Nick Sarillo call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.

See Below for Full Bio

  • Speaking Topics:

    Business Culture, CEO's, Employee Engagement, Employee Retention, Entrepreneur, Ethics, Human Resources, Leadership

  • Travels From:

    Illinois

  • Price:

    $7,500 - $10,000

    Notes on Fees

  • Videos
  • Full Bio
  • Speech Topics
  • Books
  • Testimonials
  • News

TEDx Naperville – Building a Culture of Trust: One Slice at a Time

Nick Sarillo is the founder, CEO and “primary keeper” of the Purpose and Operational Values of Nick’s Pizza & Pub – the sixth busiest independent pizza company in per-store sales in the United States. Founded with the purpose of providing the community with an unforgettable place where families could relax and have fun, Nick’s Pizza & Pub has margins nearly twice that of the average pizza restaurant and boasts an 80 percent employee retention rate in an industry in which the average annual turnover is nearly 150 percent. Nick credits his company’s success to his purpose-driven culture, which is the focus of his new book, A Slice of the Pie: How to Build a Big Little Business (Portfolio; 2012).  Nick is a regular speaker at entrepreneurship, leadership and HR conferences. His insights have been featured in The New York Times, The Economist, Inc., Fast Company and Investor’s Business Daily.

To book Nick Sarillo call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.


Building High Performance Culture through Purpose and Values – Every Employee has a Slice of the Pie
Join Nick Sarillo, author of A Slice of the Pie, as he shares his success secrets to turning any small business into a successful, high-performance organization. Nick’s compelling and surreal “It’s A Wonderful Life” story about an everyday business that was able to rally and unite an entire community serves as a great example of how clearly defining your company’s purpose and values can create a world-class culture in any organization and any industry. Nick will share real life examples from his experience in the restaurant and construction industries detailing how to create the type of company culture you’ve always wanted to work for as well as provide take away tangible tools that you’ll be able to begin implementing into your business tomorrow! Nick’s presentation will energize and inspire to action anyone who wants to strengthen organizational culture and engage their team in company results.

Trust & Track: Leadership On Purpose!
Today’s ever-changing business environment and people challenges require a new type of leader and how we manage people. Be inspired to shift from the dated command-and-control style of leadership and join the Trust and Track leadership movement. Being a Trust and Track leader means you have great communication skills and the ability to lead your company culture. Using real life experiences, Nick will share how to train managers to be coaches.

Retention: Hiring on Purpose
The restaurant industry is known for having 100-150% employee turnover rates. With almost 200 team members, Nick’s Pizza & Pub maintains less than a 25% turnover annually. How can that be? How has he been able to turn high school kids into dream employees – smart, dedicated, resourceful, hardworking, eager to learn, willing to go out of their way to make customers happy. In this interactive session, get ready to change hiring as you know it. CEO and Founder Nick Sarillo will share interviewing tactics that will add depth to your perspective on both who to hire and how best to hire them. He will share true life stories from his 18 years of experience in the restaurant business and help you bridge his tools and techniques to fit your organization and ensure you get the same results.

Customer Loyalty: A Family Recipe For Success

Have you ever tipped your server a $1000 for a $35 restaurant bill? At Nick’s Pizza and Pub restaurants this has happened four times. Nick Sarillo’s compelling and surreal “It’s A Wonderful Life” story about an everyday business that was able to rally and unite an entire community serves as a great example of how clearly defining your company’s purpose and values can create a world-class culture of customer service in any organization and any industry. Enhancing customer service starts with turning your employees into leaders rather than followers. At Nick’s, the word “customer” is actually not part of the language; instead the goal is to create meaningful “guests” relationships and experiences that go beyond a single monetary transaction. Similarly, Nick’s does not have a “staff” hired to perform mind- numbing tasks. Instead Nick’s dynamic “team” of leaders work together as a dedicated family, utilizing their purpose and set of values to find solutions on their own. In this session, gain Nick’s real-life examples of how to set your team up for success and provide “Unforgettable Guest Experiences.”

After attending this session, attendees will:

  • Be able to specifically define what A+ service is for their company.
  • Have an “Art & Science” process and tool for defining which elements of any given task are non-negotiable and which may vary based on an employee’s performance.
  • Make use of five techniques for creating, training and measuring unforgettable customer experiences.
  • Employ an effective training system that measures performance every day as well as recognizes and rewards milestones.

Trust & Track LeadershipTM - A Proven Method For Achieving Purpose And Profitability

Today’s ever-changing business environment requires a new type of leader to be more effective in the way we communicate and develop our people. In this session, be inspired to shift from the dated command-and-control style of leadership and join the Trust and Track LeadershipTM movement. The restaurant industry is known for having 150-200 percent employee turnover rates. With almost 200 team members, Nick’s Pizza & Pub maintains less than a 25 percent turnover annually. How can that be? Being a Trust and Track Leader means operating in an environment of trust and having the ability to lead company culture, not just tell people what to do. Using real life experiences, Nick shares how to create a meaningful place to work where leaders are coaches that build and inspire their team.

  • As a result of participating in this program, participants will be able to:Implement a “Recognize the positive” (over the wrong or off) behavior to support building and retaining team members.?
  • Take home coaching tools, such as the “certification feedback loop” form, that they can implement immediately to be a better coach.
  • Surrender the old perception of “boss and micro manager” and become a high-performing servant leader operating in an environment of trust and open communication.
  • Understand how to make employees feel “accepted, supported, and successful” through onboarding, training and celebrations.

Millennials CAN Be the Best Leaders - How to Benefit From Your Youngest Employees

Millennials - those employees born in the late 1980’s and 1990’s have brought unique workforce opportunities. They expect to “feel” heard and want a spot at the table. They expect to be mentored and recognized. At Nick’s Pizza & Pubs restaurants, millennials lead the way – not only do they represent more than 70% of the workforce, they are great leaders and strongly contribute to the bottom line. Nick’s operates a “Business as a School” with processes based on company purpose and values for hiring, onboarding/training, feedback, recognition and more. Come and learn how you too can successfully integrate millennials into your workforce.

As a result of participating in this program, participants will be able to:

  • Use their company’s purpose and values to give a sense of “why” and connect employees to their work.
  • Increase the value of their team by cross training and providing a clear process for solving issues.
  • Motivate and hold employees accountable using Nick’s Trust-and-Track Leadership style.
  • Tap into their employee’s full potential by giving them a clear path of development.

General Manager River Club of Mequon

“Nick was a pleasure to work with...It was refreshing to see his approach and how he as a business owner uses the material in his business every day; and, real life examples of how these cultural principles can effect change and success...Within 30 minutes of the close of our second day, I had employees utilizing and embracing the tools we had learned. I look forward to leading my team through the transformation this will have on our culture and our business.”

Director Leadership & Organizational Development Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago

“We were thrilled to feature Nick Sarillo as a presenter to over 100 Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago leaders. He quickly connected with our leaders through his genuine and powerful storytelling style. Nick provided practical, relevant and thought-provoking tools which included his Trust and TrackTM process. In addition, Nick shared with our leaders his proven methods to improve team retention, productivity and customer service. Most gratifying was to hear from a number of our leaders having implemented those tools within their teams.”

Director of Marketing People Report & Black Box Intelligence

"Nick brought passion to a whole new level while telling his story at Summer Brand Camp. He delivered a unique and heart felt message that left the audience with actionable items to take back and implement at their own organizations. Attendees were touched and motivated by his story and talked about it for weeks after the event! Nick would be a great addition to any speaker line up."
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