Meet Caroline Dionne
Meet Caroline Dionne: Our Franchisee at 841 Highway 15, Kingston, Ontario
In November 2015, Caroline Dionne took over the Mary Brown’s location on Highway 15 in Kingston. Since that time, great things have been happening. What makes Caroline an outstanding Franchisee? It’s all about caring…
Caroline has always been involved in her community and now, as a business owner, she can make a difference on even a larger scale. It’s one of her passions as a Mary Brown’s Franchisee – and it shows in everything she does.
A Good Neighbour
Caroline has made it her mission to learn all about the neighbourhood where her store is located, to get to know the businesses and people nearby and to participate in local events. She enjoys helping and recognizing her neighbours. In fact, Caroline instituted a Citizen of the Year Award to acknowledge the exceptional contributions of local individuals; the award is highlighted in-store and in the press.
Caroline knows that supporting her neighbours is not only the right thing to do, but they are also her biggest customers! The nearby military base is her store’s biggest 'neighbour' of all. Caroline ensures they get the recognition they deserve. She explains, “I have always been an advocate of supporting our troops and so it was only natural to immediately implement the staff wearing red shirts on Fridays to show our support. We offer military and their families discounts, run military specific promotions and on Remembrance Day, we give all active and retired military a free lunch. It is a little way we can say ‘we are here, we support you, and most importantly, Thank You'.”
Caroline’s commitment to the community is a big part of her success. She says, “I want our restaurant to be a 'local' venue and not seen as a 'big name, corporate establishment'. To do this, I reach out to as many people, groups and businesses in the area as I can. I offer them a lunch or dinner by bringing our food to their businesses or group meetings. It’s a win-win. Mary Brown’s food is being experienced by potential new Guests and more people meet my staff and me. In the end, our faces and our product become familiar and it raises our store profile.”
An innovation leader, Caroline implemented a tablet last year on her packing line that dramatically increased service speed and accuracy. It was a simple, cost effective solution. She shared it with other Franchisees in her region to help them increase their efficiency.
Caroline ensures her team receives the training they need to provide outstanding Guest service. She involves her team in understanding sales data and in any Guest issues that arise. She clarifies, “I implement my core values of empowerment, team work and respect. I have my staff involved in as many decisions as possible and appropriate. I find this empowers them to take ownership over their role and to be a part of the business as a whole. Our staff are our biggest asset. To be successful, we believe that we must have a strong and motivated team behind us.
If you’re in Kingston, drop by Caroline’s store and see her team in action! (You can enjoy Mary Brown’s delicious Made Fresh from Scratch™ food while you’re there!)