Work Before PlayPinot's Palette
Operations Director Chasiti Mosely Guides New Franchisees from Build-Out to Opening Night
As any new franchisee can tell you, it takes a lot of hard work to create the fun and energetic atmosphere that you typically find at a Pinot’s Palette studio. Before a studio opens its doors and the painting, drinking, and fun can begin, franchisees spend months navigating the build-out process, which includes working with architects and contractors; getting to know the local liquor laws; and learning the ins and outs of the franchise’s proprietary technology suite.
Build-out is a busy and important time. New studio owners often have questions and concerns about the process. And when they do, they turn to Chasiti Mosely.
Mosely understands all of these concerns very well. As operations director for Pinot’s Palette, it’s her job to guide new franchisees thorough every step of the process, from the early build-out stages to the official grand opening.
For most of the process, Mosely works with new franchisees remotely, offering advice and acting as a source of support via bi-weekly phone conferences.
“We talk about things like our general build-out policies and procedures, how to choose the right contractors, and how to choose an architect,” says Mosely. “After that, we discuss how to hire artists and plan calendars. That’s what makes our franchisees so successful — we answer most of their questions early in the process.”
Later, when it’s time for the studio to open its doors, Mosely and one of the company’s artist trainers visit each location in person to provide on-site, opening night support. Within the span of two years, Mosely has attended all of the Pinot’s Palette openings across the country.
“Until You Do it Yourself, You Don’t Understand”
Mosely is more than just an advisor. She knows the ins and outs of the studio build-out process because she’s been through it herself: When Pinot’s Palette was gearing up to open a new location in the Houston-area community of Memorial City, Mosely took on the responsibility of overseeing the construction and opening, acting in a franchisee/owner role to find out exactly how the process worked. It was a tough job, she says, but it gave her a real appreciation for what new franchisees are going through.
“It’s easy to tell someone how to do something and explain the steps that need to be taken – but until you really do it yourself, you don’t understand; you don’t know about all of the minor details that you need to pay attention to,” explains Mosely. “Franchisees will come to me and ask, ‘When you went through this process, what was it like for you?’ — It’s nice to be able to tell them that I’ve been through this; I understand.”
Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day
Mosely says that one of the most important pieces of advice that she gives all new franchisees is to avoid rushing through the build-out stage. She encourages franchisees to take the time to make sure that everything is done right the first time – that way, she says, they can spend more time focusing on their customers.
“Opening a studio is really exciting, but it’s important to understand that every single step takes time,” she says. “Our franchisees are ready to start their journey as entrepreneurs, and they want to open as quickly as possible – but it takes a while to build a really awesome studio. Patience is a virtue.”
This is a piece of advice that Illinois franchisees Pam Bartlett and Christa Juergens took to heart as they planned the build-out of their Naperville studio.
“We had realistic expectations,” says Bartlett. “If a builder told us that something was going to be done on this day, we’d give ourselves a few days’ padding. We always made sure that we had a cushion to get things done. We didn’t try to rush, because we knew we would probably need the extra time. And if we ever had a question about how something should be laid out or how something should be done, we called Chasiti and she helped us through it.”
Bartlett and Juergens worked closely with Mosely during the planning stages of their studio, getting her approval on all design aspects of their studio. Build-out was a lot of work, they say, but Pinot’s Palette offers plenty of support to ensure that it goes smoothly. Their studio opened in late December 2013 – and in their first month alone, they brought in 500 customers.
Mosely was there in person to offer support – and praise for a job well done.
“Lots of times, franchisees want to rush and cut corners to open their studios faster,’ Mosely says. “But Pam and Christa didn’t do that. And their build-out was perfect. Their studio is one of the best out there.”