For most Americans, working at a career means doing a great job, being recognized for their efforts, and gaining promotions that offer better pay and more responsibility. This idea, known as the “American Dream,” is what many would argue has made the United States the great country it has been for generations. If you want a perfect example of how this dream is being realized in today’s world, look no further than Papa John’s Pizza CEO Steve Ritchie. Once you delve into his background and examine his rise to the top of today’s highly-competitive pizza industry, you’ll be even more amazed at the many accomplishments Steve Ritchie has to his credit.
With his rise to CEO of Papa John’s Pizza in 2018, Steve Ritchie reached the culmination of a dream that started in 1996. Hired by the company as a customer service representative, Steve began like everyone else in these positions, learning everything he could while earning $6 per hour for his efforts. However, unlike many people who fail to recognize the opportunities before them, Steve instead dove into the job and quickly became a rising star within the company.
After 10 years of learning everything he could about Papa John’s Pizza and the pizza industry as a whole, Steve Ritchie found himself in 2006 not as an employee, but instead a franchise owner and operator. In this new capacity, Steve was not only able to use the many great marketing plans provided by the company itself, but also put many of his innovative and creative ideas to use as well. As a result, Steve Ritchie quickly became one of the company’s best-known and most profitable franchisees, which helped him gain the attention of company executives.
Working with a company that has a 98 percent promotion rate of its hourly employees into positions of management, Steve Ritchie knew that once he became a franchise owner, the sky was the limit. Having by now caught the eye of many higher-level company executives due to his innovative business ideas and ability to relate well with both customers and employees, Steve found himself promoted yet again, this time into the position of Chief Operating Officer and eventually company President.
If there is one person in Papa John’s Pizza or in fact the pizza industry as a whole who exemplifies the importance of pizza in his life, it is Steve Ritchie. In fact, even from his days in high school, it was clear Steve and pizza were destined to have a long, happy life together. While most of his fellow students were working part-time jobs, delivering newspapers, or mowing lawns, Steve Ritchie had managed to save up enough money to buy his very own pizza restaurant in his hometown. Though young and inexperienced, Steve had a natural ability to not only run a pizza business, but turn it into a huge success.
As he now takes the reins of one of America’s most successful companies, Steve Ritchie looks to the future and realizes it holds tremendous promise. Dedicated to excellence, Steve has done many incredible things since taking over as CEO. One of these has been his tours of various Papa John’s Pizza restaurants around the country, where he often drops in unannounced to visit with employees, franchisees, and even customers. In fact, it is not at all unusual to see Steve sitting down at a table with customers, enjoying a slice or two of pizza while finding out what they like or don’t like about Papa John’s. With this approach to business, it is no wonder Steve Ritchie has achieved the “American Dream.”