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Working with some of the most rapidly-growing brands in one of the most competitive of sectors, Marcel looks at how leading from the front, identifying a culture and brand message, and delivering the best for customers can create a clear advantage for any business.
Marcel Khan has worked at a senior level at some of the fastest-growing businesses in one of the most competitive sectors in the country. From how to inspire a workforce to great customer service and making your brand stand out in a crowded market, he looks at the lessons in brand, people and culture from his time with the Five Guys and Nando’s restaurant chains.
Spending six years as Operations and Brand Development Director for Five Guys Europe, Marcel launched the US’s fastest growing restaurant chain in Europe. He oversaw over 90 restaurants including what would become eight of the company’s best-performing outlets in the world. Before Five Guys he was Regional MD for Nando’s UK for almost a decade where he helped the brand grow from 42 to over 260 sites. He became the company’s top internal management developer and was also closely involved with CSR and community programmes.
In almost 15 years at the top of some of the most distinctive restaurant brands, Marcel has defined how to stay ahead in a notoriously difficult market. His lessons are simple, but can be easily forgotten in the everyday heat of business. At both Nando’s and Five Guys he and his teams were driven to create a culture where everyone felt valued and passionate about what they did. As businesses they marked out where they could compete and focused on being the best in that area, conveying a clear message about what they offered, and ensuring they consistently delivered on that promise.
Marcel actively believes in maintaining a view from the frontline, and would regularly work in restaurants and talk to customers directly about their experience. Customer service was key, as was how the values of the staff were reflected in the brand and the restaurants themselves. He delivers practical insights and advice on how to lead and inspire a team, define and build a brand and culture, and create a competitive advantage.
Now serving as CEO of Thunderbird Fried Chicken, a private equity-backed, dynamic new restaurant project undergoing expansion, Marcel continues to take on new challenges. Prior to his time at Nando’s Marcel held various operational managerial roles at UK restaurant chains including Loch Fyne, the Belgo Group, and the Planet Hollywood franchise.
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