Written by Chamberlain Zulauf
As my business classes start to pick up, I can’t help but notice vocabulary words that have been drilled into my head in everyday life. Slept in instead of doing homework? Opportunity cost; sleep in exchange for grades. Commons serving something I’m not a fan of, such as chicken tenders or general Tso’s (I said it)? Substitute commons for a classic and familiar crispy chicken wrap.
Nowhere else have I come up with so many real-world examples of what I’ve been learning in classes like legal & labor foundations, marketing management, and microeconomics as the subject that takes up as much space in my hungry conscious. None other than the most GOATed fast-food chain of all time: Chipotle.
With a chipotle bowl plus a large bag of chips and a Modelo being my probable choice for a last meal you can trust me when I say I have ideas on how Chipotle could be even better than it already is. For starters, I believe the number one thing Chipotle should add to their menu is green spinach tortillas. While I’m at it, shredded chicken, ground beef, better cheese, and scrambled eggs would also be wise strategic additions to the menu. I’d also swap out those cheesy Modelos with Heineken, but that’s more of a personal preference (or consumer preference If you will) and I recognize the theme clash.
In adding these new options for customers Chipotle would not only be increasing consumer choice/ utility and therefore profit, but also Chipotle’s food would become incomparable to competitors like Cava or Moe’s. The vocab word there would be competitive edge. If I could have a shredded chicken burrito with scrambled eggs inside a spinach tortilla, I would go straight up Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs into self-actualization.
Speaking of things every business major has heard one hundred times, let’s do some SWOT analysis! SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Starting with strengths there are a lot; quality of food, quantity of food, best in-restaurant radio, best chips on the market, best drinks (the hibiscus lemonade is addictive but also, they get points for selling alcohol), I could go on. As for weaknesses, I will admit that the quality of their food does vary from location to location. Now, for opportunity, I would like to see a Chipotle open on Main Street before I graduate. It is in this business major’s opinion that Chipotle is missing out on a valuable target market in Roanoke students and staff, with the nearest location being an aggravating 15 minutes away. Finally, let’s analyze threats. Currently, no one compares to the Mexican grill. So, threats to me are null in this case; especially if Chipotle listened to my suggestions.