Entrepreneur: Food With Thought

 

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Food With Thought: How One Franchise Is Making the World a Better Place Through Sandwiches

The problem with being generous is that eventually word gets out. That’s what Jeff Sinelli, founder of the 11-year-old Dallas-based sandwich franchise Which Wich, discovered.

Philanthropy was always a core element of his concept, with each of his 300-plus franchises supporting two to three charities per year, and corporate pitching in toward dozens more. Eventually, requests for donations got to be overwhelming.

“There were so many people asking for contributions, we could have hired a full-time staff member just to deal with it,” Sinelli recalls. “I’d be at dinner with my wife talking about it, and we’d just say, ‘There has to be a better way.’”

He found that solution after meeting Kip Tindell, CEO of The Container Store, at the Conscious Capitalism CEO Summit in 2013. Sinelli’s business card includes the line “Making the world a better place,” and Tindell asked him how he was doing that.

“We have our mission statement on our cards, on our walls, in books,” Sinelli says, “but nobody had ever called me on it.”

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