Keith Singletary has been the operator of Chick-fil-A Capital Centre in Largo, Maryland, for nearly 23 years.
Chick-fil-A Capital Centre believes in providing its guests with the best restaurant experience they can. Their team prides itself on providing great-tasting food and a comfortable environment in which to enjoy it.
With its 230 employees, Chick-fil-A Capital Centre is focused on community and enriching the lives of all of its customers.
“I had pain points, and I didn’t know about [them],” Keith remembers. “I just kind of worked through it.”
Keith is part of a group of Chick-fil-A owners and operators network. Each year, he receives a Christmas card from one of them.
When he realized he wasn’t able to send Christmas cards himself, he asked that owner how he found the time to do so.
“That’s when he shared with me that he had a Virtual Assistant,” Keith says. “I kind of measured myself, as many owners and CEOs of companies measure themselves, by the number of things we can complete on a daily basis. This is my to-do list. If I get 95%, I’ve done a great job.
“As I started spending time with him, he shared with me that he’s been able to spend time in what we call his ‘sweet spot’ because of some of the things his Virtual Assistant takes off his plate.”
That’s when Keith called BELAY and his Virtual Assistant, Alaina Colpitts, came onto the scene.
“[BELAY] was particular in getting to know who I was and some of the things I enjoy doing and the things that I may not enjoy or am not as good at,” Keith says.
“They spent a lot of time understanding who I am, which gave them the opportunity to be able to select someone who would fit right in.”
“It was a perfect match,” Keith adds. “[Alaina’s] personality and her ability to want to serve helped me out.
“She was able to take a lot of things off my plate from email management to also helping me get better organized.
“It’s all been because of her being able to help me get better organized and being able to set those timeframes for not only people in my restaurant but the community leaders I meet with and the volunteer groups I work with.
“All of that has just been tremendous.”
Keith is heavily involved in his community and serves on multiple boards. Alaina helps him with those activities by getting his notes together when he gives speeches or reports or by gathering materials for him when he is spending time in schools and mentoring kids in the community.
Keith also has been able to use Alaina’s help in his real estate ventures as well.
“One of the things I love is she suggested we have continuous meetings,” Keith says. “We meet every Friday morning and go over what's taking place this week, what do we have coming up next week?
“She creates an agenda and brings any questions she may have. I'll have some things that I'll share with her or give some updated information. Having that constant communication has been great.
“She makes me look like I really know what I’m doing.”
“I’ve been more impactful because I’m spending time in front of people as opposed to doing a lot of admin [work],” Keith says. “I’ve been able to impact people indirectly and directly as well, so I enjoy that quite a bit.”
Keith and Alaina have gotten to the point where people know that she is the first point of contact in scheduling meetings or submitting requests to Keith.
“It’s gratifying to know that if they don’t see me, they can reach right out to Alaina and request what they need from me,” Keith says. “Since I’ve had her, I have not missed [acknowledging] one birthday.
“It’s wonderful to be able to send little notes to people. My executive team and my leaders all get gifts at their homes. If I don’t get a chance to see them at work, they know when they get home, there’s going to be something there waiting from me.
“She’s helped me expand the impact that I want to have in my business and in the community as well.”
Having Alaina be the initial connection point between Keith and his team has proven to be helpful to Keith in removing distractions and allowing for more presence.
“If you want to have a greater impact, you need to be able to have the ability to delegate and understand where your sweet spot is, where you’re most effective, and let someone else take over the other part,” Keith says.
Keith has gained the ability to listen and connect with his people because of his engagement with BELAY.
“When I have my one-on-ones with them, my phone is disconnected and I'm tuned into what they're saying to me,” Keith says. “I'm holding onto every word.
“Before, I might be physically present, but my mind would be someplace else. I’ve gained the ability to be a better listener and that helps me become a better leader.
“Because if I’m leading, and I can't hear what my team is sharing with me or what it is that they need to grow or develop or do their job more efficiently or effectively, I'm not effective. If I'm not effective, then that means everybody else below me is not effective.”
With Alaina by his side, Keith has been able to do more of the things he needs to be doing to make the kind of impact he wants.
“I’m reaching more people,” Keith adds. “I’m able to touch more people, not only in the restaurant but in the community, in my church and with my relatives.
“It’s helped me become more present mentally and emotionally. I am a better family member. I’m a better husband. I’m a better leader.”
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